Say You’ll Be Mine

Books on Tape. Jan. 2024. 10:46 hrs. ISBN 9780593823019. $85.50. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
Schoolteacher and aspiring playwright Meghna Raman receives a wedding invitation from her college ex-boyfriend Seth, a successful songwriter who she believes is the one who got away. Before she knows it, she’s agreed to be Seth’s “best man” and to allow her mother to matchmake for her. Meanwhile, HVAC engineer Karthik Murthy, who adamantly doesn’t want to get married, agrees to go on matchmaking dates initiated by his mother, just to please her. Although Meghna and Karthik’s first meeting goes awry, they agree to a fake engagement so that Meghna has someone to bring to Seth’s wedding and Karthik can stop going on his mother’s dates. However, as the two get to know each other through family events and work functions, their feelings move from perfunctory to love. Narrator Soneela Nankani’s emotive vocalizations save Kumar’s formulaic debut. She delightfully portrays the pragmatic Karthik with hints of humor. While written as irritatingly oblivious to most situations, her Meghna displays intelligence as she ponders outcomes.
VERDICT Unfortunately, the abundant misunderstandings and miscommunications that befall the couple for most of the novel evaporate Nankani’s positive vibes. Best for fervent fans of the fake-dating trope.
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