The Proposal

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 09 Nov 2018

Member Reviews


Let me just preface this by saying that I absolutely adored The Proposal. Jasmine Guillory is a fantastic writer, full-stop, and her sophomore novel was a fun contemporary romance that treated its characters (and readers) like competent adults. There was dramatic tension, but it didn't feel like the characters made stupid, dumb choices JUST to move the plot forward. They communicated with one another the way people do in real life and disagreements happened because of what each character SAID to one another, not because they didn't talk to begin with. (Such gasp. Much shock. So horror.)

Both the two leads and everyone else were diverse in some way, but no one's backstory or motivations felt contrived or there to only serve a narrative purpose. Like, this novel was just so refreshing and makes you question the romance genre as a whole. Why can't other novels have functioning adults as their protagonists? Why can't there be more than just straight white people falling in love?? Why can't more intersectional stories cross over into the mainstream???

I was definitely aware of Guillory's debut, The Wedding Date, earlier this year (an #OwnVoices contemporary romance raved by Roxane Gay!), so I really wanted to read The Proposal as soon as it was published. (Because duh that cover and that summary.) AND LET ME TELL YOU. It delivered. The Proposal could have been any other romance, but because Guillory is so precise in her characterizations, it made sense that THESE characters in THIS setting had THESE things happen to them. The sex scenes weren't gratuitous but they didn't feel safe for work, either. And I know the timeline in which her protagonists fall in love is, in theory, very short, but it's also like why is this taking so long?? 👏HUR👏RY👏UP👏

Honestly, the only thing that I disliked was that the damn book ended. I could see that the pages left were getting smaller and smaller, but I was also like no??? maybe don't?? And then when Nik and Carlos FINALLY get their Happily Ever After, I turned the page and there was a biography of Guillory instead of more story. (How dare she.)

I know that both The Wedding Date and next summer's The Wedding Party take place in the same universe, but that's kind of not the same thing and I am very, very sad I can no longer read this book for the first time.
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This was a fun romp of a book. I loved how the author intertwined characters from her first book, The Wedding Date, into this story without stealing the show.
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Such a unique and fun spin on a modern romantic comedy. I’ve loved both of Guillory’s books so far. Can’t wait for the next!
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Interview with Jasmine:
Fresh Pick for 11/6/18:

Looking forward to The Wedding Party next spring!
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Not as great as the Wedding Date, but still a fun, sweet read. I did recommend to purchase this title.
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This was a fun book! I've never read this author before but I enjoyed it. Very cute and funny. I would recommend it for fans of romance comedies.
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Nikole Paterson never expected her boyfriend of only five months to propose. She especially didn't expect him to do it at a Dodgers game and have it broadcast on the Jumbotron. It makes it especially awkward when she turns him down. In for the save is Carlos Ibarra and his sister Angela who happen to be sitting a couple rows back, and when they see the sharks start to circle Nik, hoping to get a story, they whisk her out of the stadium.

After a terrible breakup with the last person she loved, Nik has never been interested in the whole relationship thing. So she's happy to just hang out with Carlos, no strings attached. 

Carlos has so much on his plate what with being a pediatrician and basically taking over as the "man of the house" after his father passed away five years ago. He's too busy to commit to someone seriously, so he's completely on board when Nik says their hanging out (and sleeping together) is enough. 

But what happens when it's not enough, and their time together becomes more than just a series of random hook-ups?

I have to say that I enjoyed The Proposal much more than I did The Wedding Date. For some reason the relationship between Nik and Carlos just clicked for me better than Alexa and Drew. I think it's the banter between them is so fantastic. Jasmine Guillory does a wonderful job of writing their arrogance and humbleness, and Carlos has some wonderfully romantic lines too. Both Nik and Carlos are good at their jobs and love what they do, Carlos especially is not afraid to wax poetic about all of his strengths and accomplishments, and Jasmine Guillory does a great job in keeping it from moving into irritating territory but showing how much he puts forward for others around him especially his family. 

Before I started reading I wasn't aware that this book was tied to The Wedding Date in any way, but rest assured Carlos's best friend Drew and Drew's fiancee Alexa are mentioned and make an appearance, which made me happy to see those characters again. 

I also loved Nik's best friends Dana and Courtney. The support system the women have for one another is everything I want to read in female friendships in my books. I wouldn't mind either of those ladies popping up again in their own book if that's in the cards.

I thought that the pacing of the story was wonderfully done. Oftentimes I find that there's so much attention paid to the build-up that when we actually get to the conflict there's not enough time for a resolution without it feeling rushed. Not so with The Proposal from the beginning to the end, everything fit perfectly. 

With two stand out books in 2018, I cannot wait to see what Jasmine Guillory brings us next!
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The Proposal was just what I needed! I loved The Wedding Date and knew I needed to read more of Jasmine Guillory. I am very quickly becoming a big fan. I was happy to see some of the characters from The Wedding Date make an appearance in this book.

The whole idea of this story is so cute. I loved that this botched proposal set this whole story in motion. It was a great beginning to the novel. I loved the strong female character of Nik. She knew what she wanted and was not afraid to say it. I really liked Carlos too!

The story line and ending was pretty cliche and predictable but I have come to expect that from romantic comedy fiction. I really don't want to be shocked by the ending- I want everything wrapped up in a pretty bow at the end. This delivered for me! I would and have recommended this book to others. 

Reviewed on Instagram
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Thank you Berkley Romance and NetGalley for providing me with a complimentary copy of The Proposal in exchange for an honest review. 

Let me start by saying, I didn't read The Wedding Date (but I wanted too). The Proposal should be counted as a novel written within the same world. I will call it book #2. The couple from the first story is mentioned or appeared quite a few times through it.

The Proposal begins with an embarrassing situation. Nikole Paterson is at the Dodgers game when her boyfriend, a guy whom she has only dated five months, proposes to her using the scoreboard. To her dismay, everyone is watching her as she tells him no in the most subtle way. He storms out, leaving her behind. 

Carlos Ibarra and her sister are a few rows behind watching the events unfold. They decide to help Nikole by taking her away from the stadium and dropping her to meet her friends. When asked to join them, they agree. Carlos and Nikole share a spark and they will start communicating through texts and phone calls in the days to come. 

Nikole thinks that Carlos will be a nice rebound hookup since she doesn't want anything serious. Carlos feels the same way. Yet, the more time they are around each other, the more difficult this arrangement becomes. 

The Proposal is a fast and easy story. I liked that the author was inclusive of different races and body types but I had a hard time relating to Nikole. She said she was hurt before and that's why she didn't want to be in a relationship but we never get to experience her past. It's only mentioned. I would've liked to see more of what the other boyfriend did to make her skittish of relationships.

Carlos was very likable and so was his family. He was devoted to them. He was a good friend too. The only time I didn't approve of him was when he felt rejected. He was quite mean then. Otherwise, he was a good guy. 

Cliffhanger: No

3/5 Fangs
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Jasmine Guillory is an auto-read author for me now! I loved The Wedding Date, and her second doesn’t disappoint. The characters are smart, relatable, and endearing. A great romance even for non-romance readers.
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I have been waiting to read The Proposal since I read The Wedding Date in February, and it did not disappoint!  This fun, sweet story was a 5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ read for me! 

If you adored The Wedding Date as much as I did, I highly suggest grabbing The Proposal. Nikole is at a Dodgers game with her boyfriend (of five months!) when he suddenly, and very publicly, proposes to her in front of thousands of people. Carlos (Drew’s friend from The Wedding Date) and his sister Angela jump in to rescue her from a camera crew following the disastrous proposal, and of course Carlos ends up supporting her after video of her proposal goes viral 😉 

I loved how independent Nik’s character is and how attached to his family Carlos is. I adored Carlos’ character in The Wedding Date, so I was thrilled he got his own storyline! I also loved the scenes with Drew and Alexa! Really this story was just so fun, it had all the components I love in contemporary rom-coms.
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I don’t what’s up with me lately, but the last few books I’ve read have just not held my interest. I got about a third into this, but it started to just get on my nerves. I used to never give up on books, but I’ve got wayyy too many on my TBR list to waste time. I’ve seen others feel the same way in reviews. It’s great as far as diversity, but the premise and writing are just kind of cheesy and predictable. Too bad, it seemed promising. Oh well.
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I had been super-excited for Jasmine Guillory’s first book, The Wedding Date, based on a lot of glowing advance reviews by readers I trust. I pre-ordered the book, set aside an evening as soon as I received it, and settled in to read … only to find myself a little bit underwhelmed. I liked The Wedding Date, don’t get me wrong, but I didn’t love it in the way I had expected. I can’t really explain why, but I just didn’t connect with Drew and Alexa’s story; I even read it again to see if a second time through would change my opinion, but it didn’t.

So I opened up The Proposal with somewhat reduced expectations, merely thinking that it would be a solid read to occupy me on a four-hour Detroit-Los Angeles flight (in the middle seat …). But I was completely sucked in from the opening page, cringing along with Nik as she endured the world’s least-welcome marriage proposal in front of thousands of fans at Dodger Stadium. I flew through the book, eager to see how the romance between Nik and Carlos would unfold, but just as impatient to find out what would happen to all the secondary characters. (I very much hope that Courtney will take center stage in one of Guillory’s future books!)

I think what I appreciated the most is that Nik and Carlos actually TALK to each other. There are several places where it seemed like a secret or mismatched expectations could send things off the rails, and I think most other writers would have used those plot beats to obstruct the path of Nik and Carlos’s relationship. But Guillory doesn’t go down that road—whatever problems there are between her two protagonists, miscommunication isn’t one of them. Nik and Carlos are open and honest with each other, and they don’t hide things that then eat away at their relationship. That shouldn’t be so refreshing, but it is.

The Proposal is one of the most well-rounded romances I’ve read lately, with a plot that is as engaging as its characters. I didn’t just like this book, I LOVED it.
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This was delightful! I read it all in one morning, and then promptly went back and got The Wedding Date from the library. I will be watching for more of Guillory's titles!
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I absolutely loved Jasmine Guillory’s first novel The Wedding Date so I was excited to read the next book in the series and learn more about Drew’s best friend Carlos.

All those happy feels from The Wedding Date returned in full measure and I really enjoyed this one. It was a fun read and very hard to put down. 

I swooned hard for Carlos and really enjoyed getting to know him better. He could be overbearing and paternalistic, particularly with his family, but this is where we see his greatest growth as a character. He carries a lot of unresolved grief and it was so good to see him finally deal with it, thanks to Nik’s advice.

Nik was not very self-aware so I did struggle to understand her at times. She would make sweeping pronouncements, like never wanting to date a doctor because her ex was a doctor, that didn’t make much sense to me. (Hello, not all doctors are the same and the issue with that ex was that he was a straight up jerk!) But I really admired her ability to create a freelance career as a writer and how loyal she was to her friends. She and Carlos made so much sense together. To the point where I was very ready for them to stop pretending they were in a “casual” relationship before they were, bless their hearts.

I loved all the food scenes: ranking tacos, Carlos's explanation for why he likes cooking risotto (which is my reason too!), Nik and Alexa meeting at the restaurant. I especially loved Nik's friends Dana and Courtney and I wish I could take that self-defense class at Natalie’s Gym.

As much as I enjoyed this book, I had two main issues that made me subtract a star. First, Carlos was such a standup guy, always looking out for Nik while respecting her agency, up until close to the end when he behaved in such a mean way toward her. This was really hard to take. I get that he was hurt but there was no excuse for him to behave that way.

Second, and I’ll try to address this as unspoilery as possible, there’s a scene in which Nik punches someone. I’m sure it’s supposed to be empowering given the self-defense classes but she was not reacting defensively. This story includes a side plot that did some great education about emotional abuse. It was a strange juxtaposition to explore emotional abuse and then have Nik wallop someone. While it was an uncomfortable situation, she was not being attached and if it was the other way around and a man was punching a woman, it would not be okay. So I really can't be okay with it in this instance either. (This such a small part of the book and I think most people won’t have any problem with it. Perhaps I’m being overly sensitive but it really did take me aback.)

I also thought Nik's grand gesture at the end was unnecessary and on the cheesy side. I just wanted them to communicate with one another! But this is totally minor in comparison to what a happy, enjoyable read this was otherwise.
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I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and Penguin Random House. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Public proposals surely make the moment far more memorable and "romantic." Of course, it is a declaration of love. However, when your boyfriend of five months, who cannot even spell your name right, proposes to you in front of thousands of people, would you still say yes?

The story follows Nik, who happened to experience the very same public proposal. Thankfully, Carlos, together with her sister, helped her from this disaster. Both Nik and Carlos are not looking for anything serious, so they both think it would be a perfect hookup set up. However, when one of them realizes that this relationship could be more than just a hookup, things get a little bit tricky.

I haven't read any books written by Jasmine Guillory, so this is my first time reading one of her books. It has been a long time since I read a romcom book. I'm glad I picked this one since I did enjoy reading this novel. This is such a funny and delightful book. It has one of the best opening scenes that I read in a romantic comedy book. The romance between Nik and Carlos is adorable. It has the right amount of swooning moments that are not way over the top. Also, the writing style is simple and very easy to read. I also commend the author for including important elements in the plot such as female empowerment, diversity and being independent through the lovable POCs. I also like how this book highlights the value of family and the importance of health.

Although the narrative started our epically, the middle part became quite slow for me. There are some cliches moments as well that made the story quite predictable. Lastly, the ending felt flat and abrupt. I just wished that it was more fleshed out.

Overall, The Proposal is a warm and fuzzy read that has diverse, interesting characters. I recommend this book for people who like to read a cute romantic comedy book.

I give this book 3.5 stars!
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4.5 stars

I reviewed The Proposal on Dear Author on October 29, 2018. The review can be found here:
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Jasmine Guillory takes another outlandish meet-cute situation, this time involving a jumbotron in a baseball park, and produces her second delightful rom-com.

Nik and Carlos meet when Nik’s man bun wearing, actor boyfriend of five months proposes during a baseball game via the jumbotron. Horrified because she hardly knows him, she turns him down much to the crowd’s dismay. But before the disappointed fans mob her a handsome stranger swoops in to save her. 

When Dr. Carlos Ibarra saw the perilous situation the attractive woman just a few rows away was put in, he couldn’t go against his nature and immediately jumped in to help her. And what started as a one time, spur of the moment event turned into great company revolving around delicious food, great fun and incredible sexy times which turned into more. 

After hearing so much about Guillory’s debut novel The Wedding Date, I jumped at the chance to read The Proposal which turned out to be a sweet and easy to read story with likeable main characters and a delightful supporting cast that added to the story’s charm.

Nevertheless I found the story’s pacing to be a bit slow and had difficulty connecting with the characters and their romance in addition to the fact that being of Hispanic descent myself I found some cultural inaccuracies and situations that felt borderline offensive. 

The Proposal is book #2 of The Wedding Date series by Jasmine Guillory. It is a sweet and fluffy standalone contemporary romance with a happy ending.
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I really struggled to connect with this book. Ultimately, I was unable to finish. However, NetGalley requires a rating. Here are my thoughts.

The Positives: Cute premise and an extremely diverse cast of characters! You have characters of different races, ethnicities, and sexual orientations. Bravo! The relationship between the three best friends is fun.

The Negatives: Zero chemistry between the hero and heroine. The humor felt forced to me. The author emphasizes how hard the characters laugh at each other, and it seems like she's trying to convince the reader that it's funny. Not my cuppa.
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The Proposal was a perfectly nice, sweet read, but unfortunately for me just probably not terribly memorable. I have great appreciation for the critical eye being turned towards the lack of diversity and representation in the romance genre, and I think romance books like this that feature non-white characters like Carlos and Nik are valuable and important. I fully intend to read more by this author (The Wedding Date is sitting unread on my shelves currently) because I'd like to give her another chance. The parts of this book that I think were the most compelling were actually the nonromance parts- Carlos's relationship with his family and Nik's tightknit friendships, and I'd be interested in seeing more from some of those characters.
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