In brief: Nik didn’t expect a proposal at a baseball game, nor did she want to marry her boyfriend. When things turn nasty, she’s rescued by Carlos, who would be perfect for a rebound fling (according to her friends).
The good: It’s fun, fresh and involves lots of delicious food.
The not-so-good: I cannot find any of Jasmine Guillory’s other books in the entire state.
Why I chose it: Many, many recommendations from others
Publisher: Headline Eternal (Hachette)
Setting: Los Angeles, USA
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Many, many people have recommended Jasmine Guillory’s The Wedding Date to me, but there were zero copies available to me locally. So the best thing to do was to read The Proposal, which is listed as the second in the series. Each novel can easily be read alone and I don’t think there was anything unexpected by reading The Proposal first. I enjoyed it so much that I’ve since ordered everything else that Jasmine Guillory has written.
The story opens with an interesting premise – getting proposed to at a baseball game on the big screen. The problem for Nik is that she doesn’t actually want to marry Fisher and they’ve only been dating for a few months anyway. Fisher turns nasty at the word no and all cameras are on Nik, but she is rescued by Carlos and his sister Angela. They help her to escape from the game and Nik insists on buying them a drink to say thank you. But Nik’s friends have already started thinking what a great rebound Carlos would be for Nik. She’s not giving in to their demands, but Nik and Carlos become friends. Then friends with benefits. Neither of them wants a full-on relationship disrupting their lives, but what if this could work?
The Proposal is delicious fun. I don’t know if it was just me, but the food descriptions in the novel are divine! Cupcakes, enchiladas…yum! It was the icing on the cake (literally) to the great characters, believable scenes and realistic plot (beyond the scoreboard proposal). There is also a wide range of diversity in the novel – Nik is black, Carlos is Latino and there are a wide range of body shapes, ethnicities and sexualities. These characters all mirror the real people you see in the real world and have realistic flaws to match. One character says, ‘Oh my god!’ a lot. The women drink too much at times. They eat full meals and multiple cupcakes – yay! They swear. They worry about how their bodies look. They feel responsibility to their families. I could relate to a lot of this. Reading about Nik, Carlos and the rest of the characters (except Fisher, who is a giant douche) made me feel like I was coming home. I felt really comfortable with the characters. To top it off, the story is funny in places! Real giggle worthy stuff of the best rom-com type. There are also some heartfelt moments too, in particular the background of one of the minor characters and a family emergency.
The writing style is easy to read and the story flows freely as Nik and Carlos become friends, then lovers. It’s a wonderfully fun read and no cliché, but I am really looking forward to reading my order of a box of Guillory’s books.