Lillie Vale | The Shaadi Set-Up

The Book: 

The Shaadi Set-Up by Lillie Vale
Published September 7th 2021 by Putnam
Date read: December 7, 2021

The Characters: 


Rating: 4 out of 5.

Buy it on | Amazon

The Plot (from Goodreads):

High school sweethearts Rita Chitniss and Milan Rao were the golden couple, until the day he broke her heart. Now, six years later, Rita has turned her passion for furniture restoration into a career and has an almost-perfect boyfriend, Neil. The last thing she needs is for Milan to re-enter her life, but that’s exactly what happens when her mother, an unfailing believer in second chances, sets them up. Milan is just as charming, cocky, and confident as he was back in school. Only this time, he actually needs her business expertise, not her heart, to flip a hard-to-sell house for his realty agency.

While Rita begrudgingly agrees to help, she’s not taking any risks. To prove she’s definitely over him, she signs herself and Neil up on, a Desi matchmaking site famous for its success stories and trustworthy enough to convince everyone that she and Neil are the new and improved couple. Instead, she’s shocked when MyShaadi’s perfect match for her isn’t Neil…it’s Milan. Ignoring the website and her mother is one thing, but ignoring Milan proves much more difficult, especially when she promises to help him renovate the beach house of her dreams. And as the two of them dive deeper into work—and their pasts—Rita begins to wonder if maybe her match wasn’t so wrong after all.

The Review: 

Thank you to Putnam for a gifted review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Normally second-chance romances and love triangles aren’t my favorite tropes, but The Shaadi Set-Up had me re-thinking my preferences!

Although it’s clear from the start who Rita is going to pick, I loved watching her learn more about herself and her relationships throughout this book. Not just romantically: Rita also had to tackle her family’s expectations. By the end of the book I was really impressed with Rita and her personal growth.

Rita and Milan had great chemistry, and I loved their friendship-turned-romance. They made a great team! I flew through this book, eager to find out why they broke up in the first place and how they would rectify it.

I love the home improvement setting–definitely one of my favorites. I’m so jealous of the house they were flipping, and felt Rita’s pain at having to sell it! She put so much of herself into that house. I really enjoyed the descriptions of her work upcycling furniture.

Bonus: Rita has cute dogs.

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