Isha, Unscripted

Berkley. Feb. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9780593547830. pap. $17. F
Isha is a recent graduate of the University of Texas with a degree in creative writing—she even took the coveted Matthew McConaughey class. Her Indian American family expects her to make something of her degree or find a “real” job. Isha does have her best friend and cousin Rohan, a fellow black sheep, nearby. After the two cousins have a rough night out at a bar in Austin, Isha gets a call from her elusive agent that she has a last-minute pitch meeting. The meeting does not go well, and her agent then drops her. Rohan comes to the rescue by trying to set up a meeting with McConaughey himself at the same bar from the night before. What follows is an improbable sequence of events, including a bartender/love interest saving Isha and Rohan from a sticky situation. Isha does pick up the pieces and start to figure out how she wants to make her life.
VERDICT The romance between Isha and Tarik the bartender is sweet, but much of the rest of the story feels clunky. Recommended for libraries where Patel’s (First Love, Take Two) previous works are popular.
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