I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Released: November 16th 2021
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Marriage Game #3
Published by Berkley
“The Singles Table has a lot to love, and I had a hard time putting this one down.”~ Under the Covers
In The Singles Table, Sara Desai returns with her newest romance full of chemistry, passion, and lots of meddling aunties.
Zara Patel is unabashedly herself: loud, colorful, and oftentimes clumsy. So when she meets a tall, dark, and stoic man at the first bachelor/bachelorette party of the wedding season, she does what she does best: she annoys the hell out of him. But as annoying as he finds Zara, Jay Dayal could use her help. Zara is a self-proclaimed matchmaker, and Jay’s mom wants him to find love in his life. And Jay, providing security to the very people who could boost Zara’s career, could help Zara in return. So Jay and Zara come to an arrangement. But it’s not long before they’re both putting their arrangement on hold and blurring the lines between friends and lovers and questioning where their true passions lie.
I have read Sara Desai before, and I’ve loved every romance she’s written; The Singles Table has a lot to love, and I had a hard time putting this one down. Jay and Zara play up the grumpy/sunshine dynamic really well. Jay is former military, a workaholic, and too much of a protector to ever have fun. Zara is one hundred percent his opposite. She finds the fun in everything, laughs at herself, and takes her large and often-overbearing family in stride. On the surface, Jay and Zara have nothing in common, only brought together by their ability to help each other. But their chemistry is undeniable – at least to everyone except Zara and Jay.
I absolutely loved how Zara and Jay could go from reluctantly friendly, to flirty and sweet, to downright steamy. Desai wrote some very spicy scenes for these two main characters, and every single scene showcased the true heart and soul of these two characters. Outside of the bedroom, there were some laugh out loud moments between Jay and Zara, as well as among their friends and family.
As much as I loved the sexy scenes, some of my favorite parts of The Singles Table were Desai’s handling of the heavier topics. As a former air force pilot, Jay does suffer from PTSD from his last deployment. Part of Jay’s journey was coming to terms with his personal struggles, and taking the steps to finally get himself help. Likewise, Zara’s life is not all sprinkles and rainbows and she must have some difficult conversations as an adult child of divorced parents.
If I had to find something I could have done with less of, it was all the miscommunication between Zara and Jay. Both characters had a tendency to self-sabotage their own happiness by doubting and second-guessing the other person time and time again. While they did it all for the other’s presumed happiness, a little less assuming could have gotten them to their happily ever after a bit faster without hurting the overall story.
In the end, Sara Desai’s latest was about finding and pursuing your passions. Professionally, both Jay and Zara realized their dreams can change along the way. Personally, they realized the perfect person for them might just be found at the singles table.
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- ARC Review: The Singles Table by Sara Desai - November 16, 2021
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