ARC Book Review: It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe

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ARC Review It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe

Love is always enough. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Or that it doesn’t require any effort. 
-It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe

Some people claim they don’t regret anything in life. Are you one of them? I’m definitely not. There are things I wish I’d have done differently. I just finished reading another advanced reader copy from a newly discovered author, and it made me think about my could have, should have, would have. Here’s my ARC review for It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe.

Book Summary

He is the best man to her maid of honor. He’s also the boy who broke her heart three years ago.

They were besties since diapers and high school sweethearts before they became exes.

Rebecca and Miguel have again crossed paths for their best friends’ wedding.

She has to confront the boy who once destroyed her heart. And as their paths intertwine, the secrets she has kept hidden threaten to resurface, leaving her with no escape from the past she thought she had left behind.

“It was like an invisible string was pulling me toward it.” 

“We were connected in a way I could never honestly explain.”

The Characters

Rebecca Allison ‘Becky’ Williams

  • A lovable, loyal, supportive friend
  • Doting daughter and sister
  • Talented baker and owner of The Reading Nook (cafe + reading area)
  • Miguel’s “Red”
“There was always something about Rebecca that drew my attention from the time we were kids. It was her natural beauty and the determined way she walked through the world.

Rebecca was my best friend. More than that, she was my person. Somebody who knew me so well that I didn’t have to open my mouth, and she’d already be there. She could read me without an issue, and I was the same.”

a beautiful red head wearing a gold dress standing by a lake

Miguel Luis Fernandez

  • NFL star
  • Prodigal son
  • Always have a soft spot for kids
  • Becky’s taste tester

“It was funny because although I’ve been in Bluebonnet my whole life, feeling Miguel’s arms wrapped around me felt like I was finally, finally home once again.”

It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe - Miguel





ARC Review: It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe

It was nice to return home to Bluebonnet, where I first met Becky and Miguel in the book Kiss Me First (Emmet and Kate). 

It Should Have Been Us made me laugh but also broke my heart and put me back together.

This book is an excellent reminder that constantly thinking about the past and all the “what-ifs” can hold you back and stop you from finding happiness.

Why I like it:

  • Becky. I’ve adored Rebecca ever since Kiss Me First. She’s kind but feisty. She’s always there supporting Miguel and Emmet from football practices to games, rain or shine. You’ll want to have her in your corner. 
  • Unexpected bomb. Just when I thought this would be another book of funny banters and cute ex-lovers who found their way back together, Anna B. Doe dropped a bomb that gave me all. The. Feels. 😩
  • Healing closure. I don’t like misunderstandings in books, but I like the closure they both get. Along the way, I understood why they acted the way they did. 
  • Roller coaster of emotions. I like it when the book serves different emotions. I laughed a few times. I’ve missed the verbal battle between Miguel and Becky. There is tension between them every time they’re around each other. There were tears and heartaches, not just for them but also for some people around them.

Indeed, it’s the things we didn’t do that we regret the most.

The worst feeling in the world is knowing you could make things right, but you let it slip away.

Knowing you could have prevented it is the only thing worse than a broken heart.

And I felt all that while reading what came down between this couple I’ve come to love.

Will I recommend this book?

If you’re into second-chance love stories with lots of heart-fluttering moments, heartwrenching pasts, steamy scenes, and hard-earned happily ever after, this is your jam.

Favorite Scenes

  • Pre-wedding football game in the backyard
  • Seeing my fave characters from Blairwood University (another sports romance series from Anna B. Doe’s universe)

Favorite Quotes

You can try to reason, but you and I both know you were made for me. This is inevitable. We’re inevitable.

These last three years have felt like I was walking alone in the dark, endless tunnel with no way out. Coming back. Seeing her again. It was like I finally could see the light at the end of it.

Love is always enough. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Or that it doesn’t require any effort.

I loved her before I fell in love with her. She had me wrapped around her finger, completely enticed, and I was starting to wonder if that would ever change.

She was the sun, and I was the one circling around her this whole time, needing her warmth and her light. Her love. I needed her love like I needed air to breathe.

You’re my ride-or-die, Rebecca Williams. My forever.

What are you reading next?

I’m honored to be part of the ARC team for this book. It Should Have Been Us by Anna B. Doe is available in paperback and is FREE on Kindle Unlimited. It will be released on December 08, 2023, on Amazon.

This post contains affiliate links, so we’d get a commission if you purchase through the links at no additional cost. Thank you!

Check out my top romance novel recommendations categorized by tropes.

Question for You

Do you believe in second chances? Where do you draw the line?

Hey, you wanna be book buddies? I share short book reviews, recommendations, funny memes, and relatable reels on my Instagram account @booksandblogs_lux. Follow me there! I also post my reviews on Goodreads.

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  1. Excellent review! It covers all aspects of the book, and gives us a lot of food to thought. Thanks.

  2. That sounds like a good one and they sound like two very interesting characters.

  3. That does sound like a good one and the two characters sound really interesting.

  4. Sounds like a romance the customers at my store are going to be eating up!

  5. Great review. I don't know this title, but I would love to know it :) Regards!

  6. No, I can not say I have never done anything I regretted in life. It surprises me anyone can. This book sounds like a fun read! Good for the holiday break!

    Allie of

  7. This sounds like my kind of book! I enjoyed your wonderful review Lux!

  8. I don't necessarily believe in second chances, but I have kidded myself into seeing it a delayed extension of the first chance.

  9. Glad to see these reviews which provide quick and clear insights into the books.

  10. Hi, Lux!

    Thank you for visiting me at Shady's Place Music & Memories, dear friend! I can relate to the second-chance romance aspect of this story, because it applies to Mrs. Shady and me. We dated steadily for two years, broke up for a year, gravitated back to each other and ultimately married. I believe tension between two characters with a history and feelings for each other is realistic. Tension and arguments are not necessarily the enemies of a good relationship. Apathy is.

    Have a wonderful weekend and please come see me again, dear friend Lux!

  11. Very interesting, thank you for this great review.

  12. Sounds like a book I would enjoy.
    Great review!

  13. Sounds really interesting. Great review.

  14. I do enjoy second chance romances! Glad to hear this was a hit. Love that cover, too. :)

  15. Love second chance romances! Happy to hear this was a hit and I love that cover. :)

  16. This is an excellent review. I think I would love reading this book. Thank you for sharing.

  17. thank you so much for lovely review dear Lux !

    i really loved it and it was beautiful to knowing characters of the book through your perspective .
    you have way to speak out things so well done and keep up the beautiful job friend :)

  18. Merry Christmas to you, dear Lux! May our paths continue to cross as we head into '24. You truly bring light and love to those blessed enough to connect with you in this online life we live.