I received this book for free from Berkley Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
Also in this series: The Kiss Quotient, The Heart Principle
Series: The Kiss Quotient #2
Published by Berkley on May 7, 2019
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Source: Berkley Publishing Group
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.
The Bride Test is the second book from Helen Hoang and we get some fun times from the Diep family. I was given this ARC from the Berkley Publishing Group and I am so glad that I was given this wonderful opportunity because this book I loved even more than the Kiss Quotient, there was something more engaging about this book than even the first one. Helen Hoang has such a beautiful storytelling voice and it really shows in her stories, she is a new author, but she is very brilliant in showing such vibrant emotion to her readers.
The Bride Test begins with our heroine, who lives in Viet Nam she works as a maid at a hotel. She is a single mother to a five year old girl and wishes she could be something more for her daughter. While cleaning the bathrooms, an older woman comes in and stikes a conversation with her and thinks that she would be perfect as a wife for her son, Khai. She wants him married with a family, but he is very stubborn, never dates and stays away from women. But after meeting with My, she knows that she is perfect for her son. At first, My is hesistant but having a chance to live in the States and bring her family will be worth it. She has a daughter to think about so she reluctantly accepts, knowing that she has nothing to lose.
Khai is furious with his mother for forcing him to live with a stranger for a whole summer, to take to weddings and eat breakfast with, he just wants to be left alone to his own devices. But when his mother promises him that this will be the only time she will intervene in his life, he grudginly accepts not expecting to like My but from the first moment he sees her he is stunned by his physical reaction to her. Khai refuses to be in a relationship because he doesn’t believe that he can love. Khai has autism but ever since the death of his best friend, he doesn’t realize he feels any emotion. But when he and My meet, the walls around his heart begin to crumble, and as the sexual tension rises between them and Khai will need to reevaluate his belief in not being capable of love when he might lose My forever…
The Bride Test is a brilliant story and I had so many feels during this book. Like in book one, we see that Khai is autistic. Now I am so happy that this author has implemented this type of diversity in these books because I definitely think there needs to be more romances that shows characters with autism especially since its much more common than most people realize. In The Bride Test, our hero is the one with Autism and its so brilliantly done. I love that we see how his brain works very differently and he processes emotion seperately. We see the relationship he has with his family and how close of a bond he has with his brother Qhuan.
Then we have the romance that develops between Khai and My or (Esme) Esme is keeping a secret from Khai that she has a daughter, she wants his approval because she sees how capable he is and independent and financially stable. She wants him to love her because she is already starting to love him but she also has other reasons to be in the states. She is on the search for her birth father, she begins to want more for herself than just marriage to Khai. She wants to be smart and to go to the University and make a difference in the world and find her true place and to be the best mother she can be. I love how much growth we see in My, see how she goes in the beginning from believing there was no hope to beginning to see her true value. Now for Khai, he wants My sexually, and at first he denies what he is starting to feel for her. He wants her in his bed, but he also misses her presence and craves her smile. It does take both of his brothers to really wake him up in the end and help him realize that he is capable of love, he just doesn’t realize he loves My, since he needs to accept his capability of true emotion first.
There were so many feels in this story and I admire Helen Hoang so much in her story. This was the perfect book for Khai and My. I love seeing them connect and has so much character growth and seeing them grow together was beautiful and endearing. We see how much they deserve one another and accept each other fully and their differences. My doesn’t know what Autism is in most of the book, but what I adored about her character is how she treats Khai. She views him as a man of worth, trust him completely and never gives up hope that he could come to love her in return. Its so beautiful seeing Khai and My come together in this story and I found The Bride Test an unforgettable story that captivates its readers hearts in such a fundamental way that is like a breath of fresh air!!! A TRUE JEWEL!