Helen Hoang is quickly becoming one of my most favorite authors.
I first found her through my Book of the Month subscription box (side note: how many of you belong to subscription services? They’re the best thing, right?)
Anyway, yeah, I found her when BOTM offered her debut novel, The Kiss Quotient.
I snatched it up based on two things: the cover and the interesting and unique synopsis.
“Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases—a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.
It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice—with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan—from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…
Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but crave all of the other things he’s making her feel. Their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…”
I absolutely loved and devoured The Kiss Quotient. Apparently so did a lot of you guys. Amazon says TKQ is one of their top 100 books in all of 2018!
If you haven’t read it yet, please do yourself a favor and pick it up. It’s darling, sexy (surprisingly hot, actually), charming and completely addicting.
So when I heard she had a NEW novel out, with another totally fun cover and a similar story, I had to have it!
And then I fell in love with it, forgot to pace myself, and finished it in about 4 days.
That’s too fast! I forgot to make it last!
The Bride Test introduces us to Khai, an autistic Vietnamese young man that doesn’t think he has the capability to love. His mother has ideas of her own and brings young Esme (how she gets her name is a cute story all in its own) over to the U.S. from Vietnam to essentially convince her son to fall in love and marry her. The side plot is endearing and sorta sad, but my heart was bursting for Khai and Esme throughout it all. Their voices are authentic and real, and at times, so DANG funny.
Here’s the official synopsis:
“Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions—like grief. And love. He thinks he’s defective. His family knows better—that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride.
As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down, thinking this could be the break her family needs. Seducing Khai, however, doesn’t go as planned. Esme’s lessons in love seem to be working…but only on herself. She’s hopelessly smitten with a man who’s convinced he can never return her affection.
With Esme’s time in the United States dwindling, Khai is forced to understand he’s been wrong all along. And there’s more than one way to love.”
This story captured me from the first chapter and immediately I was rooting for Khai and Esme. She is adorable and cute and spunky as heck; a girl that knows what she wants out of life. And Khai is so…Khai. He’s particular, dry, and kind. And when he wears his reading glasses and his wardrobe of all black, he’s sexy as heck. These two create a fire-breathing chemistry that will keep you turning the pages.
The Bride Test quickly gained armpit carry status in my house, which is basically an automatic 5-star rating. As soon as I find myself carting around a book under my arm no matter where I am, I know I’ve got a winner on my hands.
Pick up The Bride Test right away. It’s the perfect summer read!