ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
“Alexa Monroe walked into the Fairmont hotel in San Francisco that Thursday night wearing her favorite red heels…”
I loved so much about The Wedding Date! Like, oh my word, what a damn treat! Seriously friends, I know this cover screams Valentine’s Day, but this is the perfect summer read! Jasmine Guillory’s beautiful debut novel stars two people who take an elevator ride that will change their lives.
➽ Drew Nichols – Pediatric Doctor from Los Angeles, white, and freaking out that he is in San Francisco to attend the wedding of his best friend to his ex, dateless. Oh, and Drew doesn’t do girlfriends.
➽ Alexa Monroe – Lawyer, and now Berkley’s mayor’s chief of staff, black, and just trying to get to her sister’s hotel to celebrate her graduation. But Alexa is too busy with her career to risk her heart.
And while Drew and Alexa are stranded, and bonding over crackers and expensive cheese that Alexa had in her purse because she’s my damn idol, Drew realizes that Alexa might just make the perfect wedding date to the wedding he is dreading.
You all know this is a romance book, so you all know where this is going. And, Lord, it’s adorable. But you also know what it is? Important. Alexa constantly checks Drew on his privilege. And for the most part, he understands and learns from it. From Drew letting Alexa know if she is going to be the only black person at an event, to Drew realizing the different opportunities and free passes he had growing up just based off his skin color. This book has so much good inside it.
“White men hated it when you reminded them of their privilege”
This book also puts a spotlight on how important it is for us to work with underprivileged youth, especially from low-income areas. Not only was Alexa smart, beautiful, and successful, she also went the extra mile for what she was passionate about and what she believed in. Systemic oppression is real, and I loved how the author found a way to shine a light on it in a steamy romance book.
“I know, but Drew, you’re a white guy. Life is different for you. You were born with a benefit of the doubt that black kids never get.”
And even though I was completely living for this romance in every way possible, my only real “critique” of this book is that it has somewhat fade to black sex scenes that just kind of feel abrupt and disjointed. Like, the sexual angst, tension, and scenes are all there, but it just doesn’t feel as good getting a few sentences of what is happening and then *bam* they are back to doing whatever they were doing before, or whatever new activity after. This is honestly my only real complaint about this book. But this book is really sex positive, and I was here for that from start to finish!
The only other kind of side-eye I have going on is because Drew didn’t realize how amazing Alexa was right away. And sometimes it seemed like his friend Carlos was the best wing man in the entire world and deserved just as much credit as Drew! Also, side-note, The Proposal is about Carlos, Drew’s colleague and friend, and my heart is so damn happy.
Also, food is brought up constantly in this. Like, I was highkey hungry every time I picked this book up! In my opinion, I think this book is really food positive, too, but there is also a constant discussion about Alexa’s body in this book. And even though I think it’s super well done and empowering, I can also see how it could be triggering for some. Also, trigger and content warnings sexual content, for racist comments that are always challenged, and talk of disease diagnosis for a child (I know this is specific, but it’s one of two triggers that I personally have).
Overall, I loved this. And you know I’m always here for the fake dating trope done right! And Alexa was a treat to read about, and she deserves the entire world. Also, this is completely irrelevant and unprofessional, but Jasmine Guillory is honestly the cutest author in the damn world. Seeing her author picture at the end? Oh my word, what a confirmed angel! Also, I can’t wait to read the The Proposal and everything else this author creates, because The Wedding Date was such a blessing.
The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.