People We Meet on Vacation - book cover
Women's Fiction
  • Publisher : Berkley
  • Published : 11 May 2021
  • Pages : 384
  • ISBN-10 : 1984806750
  • ISBN-13 : 9781984806758
  • Language : English

People We Meet on Vacation


Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2021 by NewsweekOprah Magazine ∙ The Skimm Marie Claire Parade The Wall Street Journal Chicago Tribune PopSugar ∙ BookPage BookBub ∙ Betches ∙ SheReads ∙ Good Housekeeping BuzzFeed Business Insider Real Simple Frolic and more!

Two best friends. Ten summer trips. One last chance to fall in love.

From the
New York Times bestselling author of Beach Read comes a sparkling new novel that will leave you with the warm, hazy afterglow usually reserved for the best vacations.  

Poppy and Alex. Alex and Poppy. They have nothing in common. She’s a wild child; he wears khakis. She has insatiable wanderlust; he prefers to stay home with a book. And somehow, ever since a fateful car share home from college many years ago, they are the very best of friends. For most of the year they live far apart—she’s in New York City, and he’s in their small hometown—but every summer, for a decade, they have taken one glorious week of vacation together.
Until two years ago, when they ruined everything. They haven't spoken since.
Poppy has everything she should want, but she’s stuck in a rut. When someone asks when she was last truly happy, she knows, without a doubt, it was on that ill-fated, final trip with Alex. And so, she decides to convince her best friend to take one more vacation together—lay everything on the table, make it all right. Miraculously, he agrees.
Now she has a week to fix everything. If only she can get around the one big truth that has always stood quietly in the middle of their seemingly perfect relationship. What could possibly go wrong?

Editorial Reviews

"What Henry is especially skilled at is writing dialogue. The banter between Poppy and Alex is so natural, quick and witty that it would make Shonda Rhimes do a slow clap."
-The Associated Press

"Beach Read fans, assemble. Emily Henry is back with another smart, steamy romance….Warning: you will feel all the feels. And probably shed a few tears."
-The Skimm

"The strength of People We Meet on Vacation [is] the clever observations, the dialogue (which is laugh-out-loud funny) and, most particularly, the characters. Funny and fumbling and lovable, they're most decidedly worth the trip."
-The Wall Street Journal

"A delightful love story full of hilarious one-liners and winking asides, making it the perfect poolside companion."
-Real Simple

"Emily Henry is my newest automatic-buy author, and People We Meet on Vacation is the perfect getaway: a heartfelt, funny, tender escape that you wish could last forever."
-Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Book of Two Ways

"People We Meet on Vacation is a gorgeous slow-burn romance, full of sexual tension and tantalizing possibility. I fell head over heels for Alex and Poppy, and loved travelling all over the world with them both."
-Beth O'Leary, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Flatshare

"This is a perfect rom com, and I completely adored it. I think Emily Henry might be our generation's answer to Nora Ephron. A witty, warm page turner."
-Sophie Cousens, New York Times bestselling author of GMA book club pick This Time Next Year

"Emily Henry is a STAR! Deeply emotional and starkly funny, People We Meet on Vacation cements Emily Henry as the Queen of Banter. Rom-com fans will swoon over this slow burn friends-to-lovers romance. Poppy and Alex are real and flawed and ultra-lovable, and their Summer Trips will scratch an itch for those of us who've missed traveling. A perfect summer read!"
-Alexis Daria, bestselling author of You Had Me at Hola

"A compulsively readable book full of sparkling wit, dazzling prose and a romance that grabbed me by the heart and wouldn't let me go."
-Abby Jimenez, USA Today bestselling author of Life's Too Short

"An absolute delight: swoony, legitimately moving, and packed with witty banter that makes Alex and Poppy jump off the page. We are already waiting impatiently for whatever Emily writes next."
-Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan, USA Today bestselling authors of The Royal We and The Heir Affair

"Henry's biggest strength is in the sparkling, often laugh-o...

Readers Top Reviews

Theresa D
I was confused with what I must have missed within the story the evening before but then discovered there is an actual problem with the book. There is a section missing...the pages numbers go from 88 to 249, then from 280 to 121...where is pages 89 to least then with a little work I could figure out the whole story....shame on you team!! Probably wont buy any more of Emily's books for that reason alone.
KMDMom in CtAlyssaLi
It was fun to read about the wonderful and crazy vacations Poppy and Alex went on. AND I was very surprised it took that long for them to cross over from friends to lovers. But then I felt the story just sagged. I should remind myself that romcoms are hardly ever stories I enjoy--not a big romance fan, I guess. The book is well-written and I like the flash-back convention to tell a story but I think the book was majorly overhyped--not that good.
PEOPLE WE MEET ON VACATION Overall: ★★★★⭑/5 Spice: ★⭑/5 Contemporary Romance Stand-alone Tropes: Friends to Lovers, One Bed, Forced Proximity, Opposites Attract Follow Poppy and Alex through 12 years of being best friends and one vacation together a year for 10 of those. Poppy is loud, carefree and wild. Alex is more subdued and a homebody. When they meet in college and then have to share a car trip to their hometown their friendship begins. Every year they take a trip as cheaply as possible during the summer, until eventually Poppy is able to turn traveling into her job. Even though they live far apart as they get older, they always come together at least once a year for The Summer Trip. One summer, things get weird and they happen to not talk for two years. With a last ditch effort to save their friendship Poppy reaches out to Alex and plans one last Summer Trip just like old times. I loved reading about this friendship. The chapters bounce between different years of their past trips, and their current summer trip. These were two lonely people with nothing in common that came together to complete each other. Definitely a slow burn since we follow them for 12 years, but reading about all their secret feelings and thoughts of unrequited love was somehow both frustrating and swoony in the best way. The last quarter of this book made my heart fly, and I almost teared up while watching them work through their issues. Amazing summer/ beach read!
I was hoping to like this book. Preordered and I didn’t know what all the hype was about either. I skipped a lot of pages to get to the end. Basically it was inspired from the movie When Harry Met Sally but I thought that movie was better.

Short Excerpt Teaser


Five Summers Ago

On vacation, you can be anyone you want.

Like a good book or an incredible outfit, being on vacation transports you into another version of yourself.

In your day-­to-­day life, maybe you can't even bob your head to the radio without being embarrassed, but on the right twinkly-­light-­strung patio, with the right steel drum band, you'll find yourself whirling and twirling with the best of them.

On vacation, your hair changes. The water is different, maybe the shampoo. Maybe you don't bother to wash your hair at all, or brush it, because the salty ocean water curls it up in a way you love. You think, Maybe I could do this at home too. Maybe I could be this person who doesn't brush her hair, who doesn't mind being sweaty or having sand in all her crevices.

On vacation, you strike up conversations with strangers, and forget that there are any stakes. If it turns out impossibly awkward, who cares? You'll never see them again!

You're whoever you want to be. You can do whatever you want.

Okay, so maybe not whatever you want. Sometimes the weather forces you into a particular situation, such as the one I'm in now, and you have to find second-­rate ways to entertain yourself as you wait out the rain. On my way out of the bathroom, I pause. Partly, this is because I'm still working on my game plan. Mostly, though, it's because the floor is so sticky that I lose my sandal and have to hobble back for it. I love everything about this place in theory, but in practice, I think letting my bare foot touch the anonymous filth on the laminate might be a good way to contract one of those rare diseases kept in the refrigerated vials of a secret CDC facility.

I dance-­hop back to my shoe, slip my toes through the thin orange straps, and turn to survey the bar: the press of sticky bodies; the lazy whorl of thatched fans overhead; the door propped open so that, occasionally, a burst of rain rips in off the black night to cool the sweating crowd. In the corner, a jukebox haloed in neon light plays the Flamingos' "I Only Have Eyes for You."

It's a resort town but a locals' bar, free of printed sundresses and Tommy Bahama shirts, though also sadly lacking in cocktails garnished with spears of tropical fruit.

If not for the storm, I would've chosen somewhere else for my last night in town. All week long the rain has been so bad, the thunder so constant, that my dreams of sandy white beaches and glossy speedboats were dashed, and I along with the rest of the disappointed vacationers have spent my days pounding piña coladas in any crammed tourist trap I could find.

Tonight, though, I couldn't take any more dense crowds, long wait times, or gray-­haired men in wedding rings drunkenly winking at me over their wives' shoulders. Thus I found myself here.

In a sticky-­floored bar called only BAR, scouring the meager crowd for my target.

He's sitting at the corner of BAR's bar itself. A man about my age, twenty-­five, sandy haired and tall with broad shoulders, though so hunched you might not notice either of these last two facts on first glance. His head is bent over his phone, a look of quiet concentration visible in his profile. His teeth worry at his full bottom lip as his finger slowly swipes across the screen.

Though not Disney World–level packed, this place is loud. Halfway between the jukebox crooning creepy late-­fifties tunes and the mounted TV opposite it, from which a weatherman shouts about record-­breaking rain, there's a gaggle of men with identical hacking laughs that keep bursting out all at once. At the far end of the bar, the bartender keeps smacking the counter for emphasis as she chats up a yellow-­haired woman.

The storm's got the whole island feeling restless, and the cheap beer has everyone feeling rowdy.

But the sandy-­haired man sitting at the corner stool has a stillness that makes him stick out. Actually, everything about him screams that he doesn't belong here. Despite the eighty-­something-­degree weather and one-­million-­percent humidity, he's dressed in a rumpled long-­sleeve button-­up and navy blue trousers. He's also suspiciously devoid of a tan, as well as any laughter, mirth, levity, etc.


I push a fistful of blond waves out of my face and set off toward him. As I approach, his eyes stay fixed on his phone, his finger slowly dragging whatever he's reading up the screen. I catch the bolded words CHAPTER TWENTY-­NINE.

He's fully reading a book at a bar.

I swing my hip into the bar and slide my elbow over it as I face him. "Hey, tiger."

His hazel eyes slowly lift to my face, blink. "Hi?"

"Do you come here often?"

He studies me for a minute, visibly weighing p...