Chance Encounters

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The woman spoke of gratitude for those who had courage, and at the end of what was essentially a monologue the woman said to my friend: Surround yourself with positive people and hang in there. My friend had not shared a word of her difficulties, yet this chance encounter satisfied her need to receive something positive. But the intriguing feature of this story is that the chance encounter provided the necessary spark of encouragement and hope.

My friend e-mailed me and wanted to know what the positive psychology folks might think about such a meeting: How might fortuitous circumstances influence our wellbeing? In , writer and cartoonist Allen Saunders offered the quote: We can all relate. We spend so much time working toward something, only to have the unexpected snare our attention and take us in a completely different direction.

Of course this could be for better or worse. But is there a science underneath the positivity of chance encounters? We can test it out. Think of the three best, most important experiences in your life. Take a moment to do this. No particular order—but three things that happened to you that really changed your life. Once you think about it you will realize that one or two, if not all three were likely to have happened by chance. Sure, there was the degree you received that you worked on for years, or the promotion at work you deserved.

Yet psychology is defined as a science that helps us describe, predict and control behavior.

Unexpected Friendships Give Our Lives New Meaning

So here is a seeming contradiction. Some of the things that have made us happiest in life were never on our to-do list. Who we become is greatly influenced by what happens beyond our control. And yet, as your own life has likely revealed, there is evidence that chance encounters can, and do, positively influence our lives. Perhaps it is time to build this into the formula for expecting, and experiencing more joy and more hope in our lives. Albert Bandura wrote a paper thirty years ago that highlighted chance occurrences as the blind spot in psychology.

He looked at both positive and negative chance encounters. It was hard to step away from this story even for a second. Caroline had some difficult decisions to make and I sure as heck wasn't going to miss them! The forbidden angle of this book makes the chemistry electric. The characters are instantly attracted but not only do they live forever apart, one is in a serious relationship with a genuinely nice guy.

I'd put Chance Encounters into that category of this is so wrong, but it is so right. Alongside books like Emily Giffin's Something Borrowed. Cheating is wrong, but.. But, not to glorify or promote cheating but J. There's no physical cheating, but that emotional cheating is spread across these pages thick. So, am I saying read this book?

Am I saying take it to heart? It's a fiction, as in, read it for what it is don't get caught up in your morals, stay for a good time. Enjoy the emotions that J. You'll stay for the chemistry, the puzzling "who will she choose? Thank you so much J. Sterling for providing a copy of your book to review! Jul 02, Tarryn Fisher rated it really liked it. This was like a sugar overdose. I am currently lying on my couch fighting away happily ever afters and thoughts of true love.

Most of you know how angsty I am. I read dark, murky, slightly sick novels. I read to feel-and not necessarily to feel happy. Sterling has an eternally optimistic view of love and life. Caroline and Jax are clearly meant to be together and this is a novel for those who believe in true love Okay, I have to go exercise myself Awww, man! Okay, I have to go exercise myself of this happiness and bite someone I kind of really want that necklace View all 7 comments.

Can you forget that sizzle and get on with your life? Or will you always wonder if perhaps you missed yo Read more of my reviews and ramblings at Ana's Attic Sexy Tales and Toys While I normally dislike books where there is dishonesty and cheating, Chance Encounters by J. Or will you always wonder if perhaps you missed your soulmate? I met my now husband of over 20 years when I was on vacation. I had a perfect on paper boyfriend in college who I loved. But when I met my husband, BAM!!!! I had no idea what I was missing out on! Still, it is hard to give up a certain, perfect sounding future for the unknown.

Caroline has a great life, a great boyfriend, and had no questions about her future. She loves her boyfriend and he is a great guy. Then on a cross-country plane ride, Caroline meets Jackson. Immediately they connect, in a way that neither has ever felt before. Her life is mapped out. She saw her future, knew what she wanted and everything was great. All of her family and friends loved Clay and would never understand why she would ever leave him.

Caroline is also really nice, with a good heart.


The last thing she wants to do is hurt anyone, but in being like this, she only hurts herself. It was a light, enjoyable read that often had me smiling, despite the subject matter. I loved all the characters, and Jackson was totally swoon-worthy. I loved that the author never felt the need to vilify Clay in order to make Caroline look better. Yes, sometimes I got mad that she was still going on talking to one while living with the other, but I understood.

How do you leave your perfect future, and a guy you truly love for the unknown? The characters are way beyond college aged. Overall, I give this book 4. There was no sex in this, but lots of chemistry. Sterling for sending me an ARC of this book to review. I was not compensated for this review. Nov 12, Kala rated it it was ok. I recently read The Perfect Game by J. Sterling and I liked it a lot. It had some issues with the plot that made me give it only 3 stars, but overall I enjoyed the characters and the writing. Not as much with Chance Encounters.

I thought the first meeting between Jackson and Caroline was awkward and unrealistic. I didn't buy the progression of their relationship at all. It's also difficult to become attached to a character as unlikable as Caroline. She is constantly talking to Jackson, mooning over his gifts, swooning over his letters, but she is in a steady and committed relationship with another man that she claims to love.

I have a really hard time identifying with someone who cheats for an extended period of time. No, Caroline did not have sex with Jackson, but she had a relationship with him and she continued that relationship for over half a year until Jackson broke it off after he found out Caroline got engaged to her boyfriend. We don't get to spend much time with Jackson or really get to know him at all, but he was pretty bland. He was too perfect. I can't even think of one flaw the guy had.

Chance Encounters with Cesar Millan: Claiming an Object

I think the author wrote this before The Perfect Game and her writing has definitely improved. I'll probably check out future books by her, but this one just wasn't great. Jul 08, Melissa rated it really liked it. I love YA and I love contemporary romance - this book is like getting both in one. It is written in a YA style but the characters are older than your typical YA book. Chance Encounters is about love at first site, it's about wondering if you are with the right person, it is about taking chances, and it is about breaking hearts. I think my favorite line from the book was "Sometimes other hearts have to break in order to keep yours intact.

I started this book and finished it within 24 hrs. The story was sweet, emotional, and entertaining - the perfect mix to break my reading slump. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that loves a love triangle, love at first sight, and a happily ever after. Can't wait to read more from Miss Sterling!

Apr 14, Lori rated it really liked it.

How to Learn From Friendship Lessons and Chance Encounters | PairedLife

I have to first say Congrats to J. I can see where she has grown confidence in her writing and am proud to say that Chance Encounters was a wonderful read I fell in love with the Characters Jackson especially, I felt the love, the heart break, and most especially the deep connection between all of them. I also have to give J. I did at times get frustrated with Caroline because I knew who I she should be with but at the same time I understood her reason to hesitate.

This was an amazing book and now has me even more enthused for more of J. Full review to come Aug 20, Tara rated it really liked it. Talk about a guilty pleasure book. Caroline has the perfect boyfriend Sterling are you a Packers fan? Even she would tell you that, before she got on a plane that is. If I was her real life friend I would be kicking her ass for even thinking about another guy while she had the perfect guy at home.

Here is where the guilty pleasure kicks in though because the minute Jackson was introduced Loved h Talk about a guilty pleasure book. Loved him, loved their chemistry, loved it all. I felt horrible for wanting her to break up with a perfect guy for some guy she met randomly on a plane that lives clear across the country, but I just couldn't help it.

This story is a true follow your heart where ever it may lead you story. Review Ramblings ugh, can't. I kind of like Bailey Thomas needs to get over himself …. OMG, I can't believe these idiots Seriously, pick up the damn phone I absolutely hated the start of the book and the rest was just okay. I liked tidbits here and there. I liked Clay and Caroline's relationsh Review Ramblings ugh, can't. I liked Clay and Caroline's relationship and how nice she is to him and vice versa.

Some of the lines that the respective best friends deliver hit the spot. But that's about it. It just didn't work for me. View all 4 comments. Apr 07, Jennifer rated it it was amazing Shelves: I couldn't put it down. This book made me feel many emotions It also showed me you should always follow your heart.

Also not to waste any time May 16, Michelle Mankin rated it it was amazing. Lots of deep quotable lines. Author really captures way girlfriends talk and relate-which I loved! Oct 09, Tina rated it did not like it. Oh god the writing is atrocious. Jul 24, Just My Opinion rated it really liked it.

How to Learn From Friendship Lessons and Chance Encounters

THIS is a love story! Sterling very graciously provided me with a copy of her novel to review and I can't thank her enough! Literally, right from the very first pages, I was feeling a connection with the characters and their circumstances. The characters have personalities of people you know. They come to life right off the page and live out the book in front of your eyes. I am lucky enough to have experienced love at first sight and can empathize with the moral and emotional dilemmas faced by the female lead character.

The friends both Jackson and Caroline have surrounded themselves with are incredible supporting characters with their own depth and emotional tides. I would love to know the stories they must have to tell as well. I can only hope so! This book is a fast-paced, emotional rollercoaster ride you never want to end. Sterling weaves this tale with such casual ease and wit that you very well may finish it in one sitting. I was left feeling fulfilled yet missing Caroline and Jackson within moments of the last page. While the story is fantastic, I found the characters unforgettable.

As it says in the novel, sometimes you have to break other hearts to be true to your own. While I am paraphrasing a bit, this is a truth in life and a lesson we all should hope to learn. I am inspired to live every moment to its fullest and never waste a moment. May 06, Laura Young rated it really liked it. J Sterling Page count: Sometimes other hearts have to break in order to keep yours intact. So the thing that made me mad and lowered my review. Its just not right! Also thanks to the author for giving me a copy to read and review the story.

Overall I liked it. The guy characters were all strong and ready to speak their minds.

Caroline Weber well she was a weak and afraid. That keeps getting me. Jan 04, Hannah Lane rated it it was ok. I feel the same way about both of J. Sterling's first two novels—the bones themselves are good ones, it's the flesh around them where problems arise. Caroline has a perfect boyfriend, but after meeting Jackson on an airplane, she's suddenly conflicted about where she really belongs.

Here are my issues with this book— -The initial encounter between Caroline and Jackson was ridiculous. I rolled my eyes the entire time, which probably wasn't a great start. There are moments where I connect with the character, but Caroline as a whole wasn't very developed. I don't like it when I'm trying to figure out why the guy is so in love with the girl. Sterling book, the plot was a good one.

It just wasn't executed in a way that matched the initial idea. Sterling has gotten better with her books. The Perfect Game was a major leap, I cannot wait to read her next books! Dec 24, Alyssa rated it really liked it Shelves: Despite the relatively lower reviews, I quite enjoyed this book a lot. The book is what it claims to be: They had everything planned out for them and didn't see any foreseeable change to their plans. Until Caroline meets Jackson, a boy she can't help but feel an instant attraction to and can't keep herself away from.

I don't condone cheating at all, and although Carol Despite the relatively lower reviews, I quite enjoyed this book a lot. I don't condone cheating at all, and although Caroline doesn't cheat physically, she definitely does emotionally, but you can definitely sense the instance attraction and pull that Jackson and Caroline feel from the very beginning, and I guess I couldn't really fault her for that.

I also really like how there was nothing particularly wrong with Caroline and Clay's relationship, just that it wasn't the right one and it wasn't meant to be. Clay didn't fuck up. He wasn't a complete asshole. It wasn't like he disrespected Caroline. He just wasn't the one. And if we want to compare writing styles, I actually think the writing in this book was better than Sterling's writing in her other book, "The Perfect Game.

It was also kind of a nice change that the attraction and relationship between Jackson and Caroline was pretty much all emotional and not physical. Nice quick read with a unique plot. May 14, Andrea Randall rated it really liked it. When reading YA books, I try to keep in mind the intended audience despite my 29 years. With Chance Encounters, I didn't have to think about it!

I appreciate when the action starts right away, when plot tension doesn't come half-way through the book, and CE hit the mark in that respect. I fell in love immediately with Jackson Parks, but, like our main character Caroline, I was also in love with her boyfriend Clay. The story is real, palpable, and heartbreaking. The ping-pong game between Caroli When reading YA books, I try to keep in mind the intended audience despite my 29 years.

The ping-pong game between Caroline's head wanting to keep others happy, and maintain the status quo and heart wanting to keep herself happy is a struggle we have all dealt with at one time or another. The supporting characters are absolutely wonderful. Caroline and Jackson have friends that I wanted to high-five and hug throughout the novel. Sterling does a spectacular job of writing male characters, as well. It's not just their obvious sexuality she nails, but their emotions and idiosyncrasies.

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Not every male is a muscled-out meat-head with stars for eyes. Some are angry, some are confused, some are "love lovers," and it helps build depth of character in the story. The tension, the climax, and the ending were all gut-wrenching and heart-warming at the same time. This is a great YA read that I really do feel can be enjoyed by those who also enjoy the the YA mature genre. Feb 25, Jaymie rated it liked it Shelves: I am really torn as to how to rate this book. I liked the idea of a girl who thinks she has everything she wants until she meets a stranger who she just can't get out of her mind.

However I really have to say the execution of the story was more 2 stars. So I will give it 2. I am a huge fan of J. Sterling's book The Perfect Game , I absolutely loved it. So I was anxious to read more of her works. Unfortunately Chance Encou 2. Unfortunately Chance Encounters did not impress me as much as I had hoped. Other than a few memorable lines and quotes from the MC's best friend Bailey I really didn't like the writing. I am a huge fan of love triangles but this one did nothing for me. It was a bit predictable and not totally believable.

I wish I could have liked the characters more but I just could not connect to them. I think this author is extremely talented I just don't think this is her best work. Apr 18, Melissa Simmons rated it it was amazing. I was given the opportunity by the author to read, Chance Encounters by J. I was hooked from the very start. I loved the main character Caroline; she is a girl who knows what she wants in life. She loves her boyfriend and then she meets Jackson, a gorgeous farm boy from Upstate N I was given the opportunity by the author to read, Chance Encounters by J.

She loves her boyfriend and then she meets Jackson, a gorgeous farm boy from Upstate New York, and they just instantly connect with each other. I liked how the author made the story into a forbidden romance by putting Caroline in a relationship from the start. I love to watch the drama unfold. These types of love stories are my favorite kind to read, whether everyone gets their happy ending or not. I definitely recommend it! Oct 15, Christy rated it it was amazing. They had always both known it. And today was only the beginning. That is the dilemma Caroline has.

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