Alisha Rai comes to the blog with the third in her Modern Love series: full of unusual, complex and utterly human heroes and heroines with
First Comes Like
Jia lives with her friends Rhiannon and Katrina, after moving from New York. An Influencer with a twist, Jia is a product of a conservative Muslim family, wears a hijab, and hides many of her insecurities behind a truly giant heart, a positive outlook and tons of hard work. If she could, she’d make everyone ‘feel’ beautiful, and her short videos that promote products she believes in help women of all sizes and colors feel better about themselves. She’s ultimately hoping to start her own company, creating makeup that works on a broad range of complexions and doesn’t require a ton of extra work to find that ‘right shade’. She’d found herself enamored of a ‘text’ relationship with a famous Bollywood name: a television actor with a verified account who helped her to feel desired and valued.
But finally meeting her ‘crush’ face to face at an event turns her world upside down. He doesn’t know her – and she’s been catfished. Dev Dixit is from a line of Bollywood stars, but took his talents to the small screen, and is in Hollywood to film a new nighttime soap, hoping to broaden his career. Things never quite worked out as he expected after his brother’s death, and taking responsibility for his teen niece, and bringing an Uncle to live with him under his now limited means as he navigates a new work environment and expectations is wearing. But meeting Jia, whatever the circumstance, leaves him unable to forget her. He’s intrigued and uses that concern for her (and fear that he knows who ultimately set her up with ‘him’ via text) is something he should atone for.
But Jia has other pressing issues: with her parents’ discovery of a photo of the two snapped by paparazzi, and her inability to declaim the photo, she needs Dev to ‘pretend’ a relationship – just to get her through the upcoming visit. This was possibly one of the most intriguing and complex stories of the series, as Rai uses traditional values, the “Desi” way of things, and the innate reserve of both Jia and Dev to create a relationship that shows the two truly starting to develop a connection, even with multiple and frequent interference from family, friends and the press. A lovely look at hope, desire and the power of love – all wrapped into a story that defies first impressions, prejudgments and long-standing beliefs in your place in the world, all to be rewritten.
Title: First Comes Like
Author: Alisha Rai
Series: Modern Love #3
Also in this series: The Right Swipe, Girl Gone Viral
Genre: Asian-American, Coming of Age, Contemporary Romance, Contemporary Woman's Fiction, Dual Narration, Family Saga, Friendship, Humor elements, Multi-Cultural, Romantic Elements, Second Chance
Published by: Avon
Published on: 16 February, 2021
Source: Publisher via Avon Addicts, Publisher via NetGalley
Audio Length: 11 Hours: 11 minutes
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Book Depository ♦ Google ♦Audible ♦Direct from Publisher
The author of The Right Swipe and Girl Gone Viral returns with a story about finding love in all the wrong inboxes...
Beauty expert and influencer Jia Ahmed has her eye on the prize: conquering the internet today, the entire makeup industry tomorrow, and finally, finally proving herself to her big opinionated family. She has little time for love, and even less time for the men in her private messages—until the day a certain international superstar slides into her DMs, and she falls hard and fast.
There’s just one wrinkle: he has no idea who she is.
The son of a powerful Bollywood family, soap opera star Dev Dixit is used to drama, but a strange woman who accuses him of wooing her online, well, that’s a new one. As much as he’d like to focus on his Hollywood fresh start, he can’t get Jia out of his head. Especially once he starts to suspect who might have used his famous name to catfish her…
When paparazzi blast their private business into the public eye, Dev is happy to engage in some friendly fake dating to calm the gossips and to dazzle her family. But as the whole world swoons over their relationship, Jia can’t help but wonder: Can an online romance-turned-offline-fauxmance ever become love in real life?
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via Avon Addicts, Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.