First Love, Take Two
by Sajni Patel
Rating: 5/5 Genre: Contemporary Romance Steam: Closed Door Romance Publisher: Forever Romance Pub Date: September 21, 2021 Thank you Forever and NetGalley for my ebook Advanced Copy! You're the best! I purchased a physical copy for and by myself. Available: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookShop
CW: Racism, Xenophobia, Heart Attacks, Anxiety, Depression, Medical Descriptions, Death of Baby
First Love, Take Two Synopsis: After years of hard work Preeti Patel is so close to accomplishing her dream of being a doctor. But she has yet to have a job line up, she needs to find an apartment ASAP, and her parents want her to get married to a respectable Indian man. When her best friend Liya offers her apartment up for a couple months as she’s moved out, Preeti jumps on the opportunity. Only downfall? She has to share it with the only man she’s ever loved and the man whose heart she broke six years ago. Nothing can go wrong with this set up. She never told him why she ended the relationship. There were too many opposing views on both sides of their family and it would have crushed him. Surely she can keep her mouth shut, libido in check, and heart protected for three weeks.
First Love, Take Two Review
After reading The Trouble With Hating You earlier this year and falling head over heels in love with it, I was so incredibly happy to receive this book as an eARC. Literally made my whole miserable week and I read it in a day. Then I reread it. Whoops! Also if you haven’t read the first one in this series I highly recommend it as there is a decent amount of overlap and details that could ruin the first book.
Before I go too much into the details of love and meh about this book I just want to let you know why I adored this book as a whole and why Patel will be an auto-buy author for me. These books are heavy. There is a lot more in this book than meets the eye when you look at the cover or even read the synopsis. This book covers racism, familial expectations, cultural identity, and mental health in depth. The characters are put through the wringer. Patel does not hold back on them. It was the same with The Trouble With Hating You. This is why I adore Patel’s writing and story building. It’s not for some, but if you are capable of making it through those topics then these books could easily become favorites of yours. The way Patel writes relationships between friends, family, and lovers is amazing.
Preeti: I really enjoyed her as a MC. Yes, I got annoyed with her at times, but the way that Patel has written her to be multilayered it works. I found her need to put her family and Daniel before herself to be incredibly selfless and made me like her even more. Her struggles were so real. I really felt for her. Overall she was a wonderful MC that I couldn’t help but to root for!
Daniel!: You sweet bean. If anyone is looking for a perfect example of a cinnamon roll hero here he is. I mean the man can cook, love his family, flirt like crazy, help make presentations, but also has a chip on his shoulder to make you swoon! Ugh. Love love love him!! Plus I thought he was the perfect opposite to Preeti.
The Mental Health: I loved this. Omg, I appreciate it when authors portray anxiety and mental health well in a book. And adding to this one the extra layer of seeking help as a medical professional just was phenomenal. Loved it.
Plot: I’m a sucker for second chance romance with an aspect of forbidden romance and interracial/cultural couples. Obviously this book was like catnip for me. The plot moved the book along so well but didn’t sacrifice fully creating all of the characters. Patel went there with the themes of the book and thus that content warning should really be acknowledged. There weren’t petty issues between Daniel and another man or Preeti and another woman beyond a little jealousy but it didn’t become half the book.
One thing that really confused me at the end of the book was the timeline. So it’s supposed to be three weeks of Daniel and Preeti living together in the apartment. And they broke up over six years ago destroying a four year relationship. Right? Well then their actions throughout the book of Daniel being incredibly flirty and then very upset was strange. As was the speed of the relationship. Not spoiling anything, but the end seemed FAST for everything that went down in the book!
Long Story Short
Do I recommend reading this book? Yes!!! Read The Trouble With Hating You first, but then read this one. Read both of them. Get prepared for the next books from Sajni Patel. I adored reading this book. I think it took me an hour ranting to my mother on the phone about how good it was. There’s nothing else I can really say about this book than what I’ve already wrote. Just go read the book!!
If You Like This One…
I highly recommend picking up The Trouble With Hating You if you haven’t already read it for obvious reasons. Read my review of that book here. Another great one that is a second chance romance that’s also a friends-to-lovers book with a few heavier topics is People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry. Read my full review here. Or if you want a book that’s closed door romance with even more pain and heaviness then read Float Plan by Trish Doller. My review is here.