Title: The Bride Test
Author: Helen Hoang
2nd Book in the Kiss Quotient Companion Series
Adult Contemporary Romance
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
To say that I had high expectations for this book is an understatement… After LOVING The Kiss Quotient … I was equally excited and terrified of reading this book… but I’m so pleased to say that I need not fear; this story was everything and more..
First, it’s not another Kiss Quotient even if we do have a similar couple (an autistic love interest) These characters come alive all on their own… Khai is such an adorable character… it’s an experience to learn his quirks and to see him learning how to relate and interact with Esme, to see him fall in love and come out of his comfort zone which is a very difficult thing to do, as well learning to deal with loss and to process emotions… it’s an amazing journey to say the least..
“He was ignoring everyone, including her, at this expensive wedding. So he could read a novel about alien demon things.”
I love how to the point he was… and I was laughing out loud when everyone told Esme how she should just tell him when she wanted something from him and not just expect him to know … I was just thinking that is the worst thing to say to a woman!! It was just hilarious…
“Please, don’t let me make you cry,” he whispered in her ear. “If something is wrong, tell me so I can fix it. Please.”
Esme was someone I could relate to… her ambition, her need to do better for her family regardless of what it took from her to do so… Her experience as an immigrant touched me… even if it wasn’t the main focus of the book what little we got was to the point.. I truly love her resilience, her strength, her commitment to understanding Khai as best she could without having a clue why he was the way he was.. her acceptance of him… She’s quite the character…
The romance itself was sweet, fun and cute.. and I love reading about Michael and Stella.. and those glimpses we got from Quan… I just want his book ASAP… However, why didn’t I give it a 5 star? I wanted a little more from them as a couple.. The courtship was so very good, but I wanted to see more interaction not just being told about them going on dates… or just them at random family weddings… Maybe I’m just too picky..
Also (and if you haven’t read the book this might be a spoiler — Sorry) I thought that the surprise kid was too easily solved and accepted — it felt a little rushed to me… And why didn’t anyone explain to Esme what an autistic person was sooner? I understand how Khai’s mother wouldn’t but Quan could have done it sooner to give her more background and understanding of his brother… It just bothered me…
Overall, even with these little details I would still urge you to read it.. and enjoy it… which I’m 100% sure you will… It’s such a refreshing and adorable love story that leaves you feeling happy and warm…
Have you read this book yet? Let me know if you agree or disagree with my opinion in the comments below