❈ Huge thanks to First To Read for providing me with a galley ❈
Title: The Wedding Date
Author: Jasmine Guillory
Release Date: January 30th, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Agreeing to go to a wedding with a guy she gets stuck with in an elevator is something Alexa Monroe wouldn’t normally do. But there’s something about Drew Nichols that’s too hard to resist.
On the eve of his ex’s wedding festivities, Drew is minus a plus one. Until a power outage strands him with the perfect candidate for a fake girlfriend…
After Alexa and Drew have more fun than they ever thought possible, Drew has to fly back to Los Angeles and his job as a pediatric surgeon, and Alexa heads home to Berkeley, where she’s the mayor’s chief of staff. Too bad they can’t stop thinking about the other…
They’re just two high-powered professionals on a collision course toward the long distance dating disaster of the century–or closing the gap between what they think they need and what they truly want….
After reading The Wedding Date, I created my “Favorite Reads of 2018” shelf on Goodreads and promptly added this book to the list so that should tell you how well things went.
Over the years, Fake Dating & I have had a rocky relationship. Plots revolving around Fake Dating are an easy way to get me intrigued, but they tend to fall short in actuality. Was that the case with The Wedding Date? Definitely not.
“She glanced up at the ornate clock over the bar, surprised at how late it had gotten. And how much she didn’t want this night to end. Damn it, it had been fun to be Drew’s fake girlfriend, but she knew that once the clock struck midnight, so to speak, the fairy tale would be all over.”
The Wedding Date is easily my favorite take on Fake Dating ever. That’s probably because Alexa and Drew’s “Fake Dating” Scheme didn’t last the entirety of the book. There was something so natural about the transition of their fake dating to their tip-toeing around defining their relationship after which involved weekend trips to see each other from across the state. In a way, it felt effortless and like I was actually watching the relationship of two people I knew unfold. Organic development was the main thing that drew me in about their relationship and made me root for them so much. While they were on their weekend of fake dating at the wedding, Drew tells Alexa to make sure to tell him if he does anything that bothers her. In that instance, it made Drew and Alexa’s encounter so much more real. I don’t know how to explain, but that was when I knew how great they were. Also, it was a nice diversion from other Fake Dating novels I’ve read in the past where one party will do something the other is uncomfortable with in order to convince everyone they’re dating. And, of course, the whole “hey I met you in an elevator please be me fake date for a wedding this weekend” thing was adorable and had the whole fate/chance encounter trope which I’m a huge fan of.
Alexa and Drew were such unique characters. Drew was a swoon-worthy Doctor working in Pediatrics in Los Angeles. Alexa was a black lawyer turned Chief of Staff working for Berkeley’s Mayor. I loved that they were both career driven individuals. We actually got to see the work they were doing too. Sometimes that’ll be brushed over, but that wasn’t the case with The Wedding Date. Alexa had an awesome arts program she wanted to create for at-risk teens, and we got to see that a lot throughout the novel which was cool. Alexa and Drew had very different problems in their life but I loved how they each helped each other when things got rough (there’s a really amazing scene which I’m referring to & it was so perfect). Alexa is Black and Drew is White. During the course of the book, there were instances when Drew says/does ignorant things and Alexa calls him out. Over the course of the book, Drew learns to be aware of his white privilege and how it impacts Alexa.
One of the problems I tend to have with Romances is the lack of development for side characters. They can feel like cardboard cutouts who are there to conveniently help the main character in their times of need. That was not the case with The Wedding Date. I loved seeing Alexa and Drew interact with their friends separate from each other. Drew had a best friend, Carlos, who wasn’t afraid to give him advice and it was great to see a close male friendship (Pssst Carlos is also the hero of Jasmine’s next book, The Proposal, so keep an eye out for that one hitting shelves in September.) Then, there was Olivia, Alexa’s sister, who was a lawyer in New York. Alexa wanted to make up for her past poor treatment of her sister and that was a decent part of the novel, and I loved the resolution and the bits we got to see of her. I PRAY we see more of the side characters featured in The Wedding Date again in the future…
I absolutely adored the setting (cause I’m a biased Californian). The story started in San Francisco at the wedding and then goes back and forth between Los Angeles where Drew lived and Berkeley where Alexa lived. It was a lot of fun to see recognizable places. Plus, In-N-Out was eaten and mentioned several times over the course of the book.
I would 100% recommend The Wedding Date to anyone look for a good romance to read.
If you like Fake Dating, have a passion for In-N-Out, or are looking for a Romance set in California, then The Wedding Date is definitely for you.