Cover Image: First Love, Take Two

First Love, Take Two

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Member Reviews

OMG!! I cannot express how much I loved this book. It was everything I could ever ask for in a romance novel and second chance romance being one of my most favorite trope, this book set up my expectations so high. Preeti and Daniel own my entire heart and I was so proud of Preeti for speaking up. Growing up in a south Asian community I have seen racism a lot and I could relate to this book a lot. And Daniel…that man made me swoon so much. I adore him and want to protect him from everyone. The small conversation, touches Pree and Daniel shared was everything and I just couldn’t stop myself from falling in love with them. It's one of the best book I have ever read.
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This was SOO cute!! Such a heartwarming second chance romance that honestly was very emotional at times! While there are some very sweet moments in this book and some great playful banter between our MCs, this book also tackles some serious topics (mental health, racism, societal pressures) that had my heart hurting along with our main characters. I definitely could feel the chemistry between Preeti and Daniel and loved how they found a way back to each other. I also continue to love this friend group! My only wish was that there was a bit more romance and that our MCs overcame the obstacle that came between them a bit earlier (some of it dragged a bit in the first half).

Rating: 4 stars

Thank you to NetGalley and Forever Publishing for an e-ARC of this book!

TW: racism, sexual assault, anxiety, pregnancy complications.
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Preeti Patel is completing her residency and realizing her dream of becoming a doctor. But the pressure from her family to get married, the stress of finding somewhere new to live because her roommate is about to return from her honeymoon, and the exhausting residency hours are weighing on her.

One of her problems is seemingly solved when she is offered a friend’s vacant apartment until she finds a permanent housing solution. However, she discovers that she will not be the only one staying there; she will be sharing the apartment with her ex Daniel, who she never really got over.

Daniel has swagger, incomparable cooking skills, and good looks. But Preeti’s community did not approve of their interracial relationship and she fears that if they were to rekindle their romance it may not be worth the fallout.

Guys, this book is full of great chemistry. This book would be a studio apartment because there are no doors. 🔥 If steamy romances with strong female characters are your jam, too will love this series.

I keep saying that second chance romances aren’t my favorite but this is the third one in a row that I’ve read so I think I’m changing my tune. I think I enjoyed this one so much because there was a legitimate reason why Preeti and Daniel broke up years prior, unlike some second chance stories that have flimsier miscommunications as their breakup catalyst.

I loved getting to see a bit of Liya, who is one of my favorite book heroines. If you haven’t read The Trouble with Hating You, do it. She is so awesome.

This book is a romance but it does touch on heavier topics like racism, mental illness, touch aversion, etc.

Thank you to Forever (Grand Central Publishing) and NetGalley for an advanced copy of First Love, Take Two in exchange for my honest opinion.
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I loved the first book in this series, The Trouble with Hating You and I was so excited when I received the ARC of this book. Overall I felt that this book, compared to the first book, lacked a bit of what the first book had. 

I love the second chance romance between the characters even through nothing happened between the characters, romantically until about 70% through the book.. I love that the female character, Preeti was a doctor and that she was working through her anxiety in this book. It really shows the stress that doctors in training go through along with someone who is dealing with anxiety. The representation in this book was great. I loved Daniel he was a great character and helped Preeti so much specifically with her anxiety. 

I love the cultures in this book. Within the first couple of chapters we see Daniel's family at a gathering and there is so much southern food that actually made me hungry reading it. I love that we get to see Preeti's Indian culture as well and the struggles she is going through in her own way (since we say Liya go through her struggles in the first book in the serious). 

Both characters are forced together and they share an apartment for most of the book which is where they are forced to work things out and actually talk. The tension between then was off the charts. 

I liked the message that this book told, but I felt that there wasn't any character growth with Daniel as much as there was with Preeti. I also felt the romance was so slow burn that it felt rushed when it actually happened between them. 

Overall it was an enjoyable read. I love Sanji Patel's writing style. I can't wait to see who she writes about next!

Thank you Forever publishing for an e-ARC through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review and thoughts.
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I really loved this book. the characters were really well developed that the story just flew by really smoothly. I really appreciated the inclusion of good food as I am a foodie at heart and the relationship in this story was the cutest. I loved Daniel, his character was overall my favorite because he always had such interesting responses and actions. The element of realness was a good touch to this novel. I think it's important to recognize toxicity in cultural traditions and relationships. The messages in this book were really powerful while also letting it still remain a romance novel with a lot of heart. I think it would be great to see another book in this world. I would definitely recommend this book.
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AHHHH Sajni Patel's First Love, Take Two was a heartwarming, swoony romance that gave me all the feels. There is nothing I love more than forced proximity romance because all the fiercely spirited banter and tension are just delicious. That is exactly what we got with this story. I absolutely loved Preeti and Daniel's second chance at love.  It was sexy, humorous and full of heart!

As a South Asian woman and also a woman in an interracial relationship, I loved how Patel highlighted the unique and somewhat problematic perceptions of South Asian communities and the experiences of interracial dating. It hit home for me and made this story extra special.

Overall I loved this story and hope to read more from this author in the future! 4 stars! ~Ratula
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4.5 stars!
After adoring The Trouble With Hating You  (I reread it earlier this year almost reread it again but had to stop myself because I needed to read other books), I was soooo excited for First Love, Take Two! I loved Preeti in book 1 and couldn’t wait to find out the mystery of her and Daniel’s relationship. 
I can be a sucker for a second chance romance, but it can be very hard to do right. You have to mix the right amount of angst with the right amount of “oops what if we just kissed again” to get the perfect formula. The author really delivered me what I wanted! The conflict that broke them up six years ago is big enough that the hurt still makes sense today, but wasn’t anything unforgivable on either Preeti or Daniel’s part. 

Aside from their rekindling romance, I also was very emotionally connected to Preeti and her struggles with anxiety. And I loved how Daniel would give her space while still being there for her during a panic attack. It was really wonderful to see. I don’t want to give away more of the story so I’ll just say that I also appreciated the way Preeti was there for Daniel when he really needed it as well. Their relationship felt deep and supportive. 

Both Daniel and Preeti’s families have their wonderful parts and their toxic parts. I liked watching them both come to terms and do what needed to be done for their own success in life emotionally and mentally. 

As cute and heartwarming as much of the story can be, there are some parts that can be very hard to read. Please be aware of trigger warnings for anxiety, panic attacks, racism, fetal demise scene (briefly on page as Preeti is a resident in a labor & delivery ward), slut-shaming, and contentious familial relationships. 

I loved watching Preeti and Daniel regrow their relationship throughout the story. Daniel is a super sweet guy who is always there for Preeti even when she isn’t ready to be there for him yet. Their separate journeys make them much stronger people individually and a force to be reckoned with as a couple. 

I do recommend reading The Trouble With Hating You before this book as there are vague references to what happened in book 1 that may be confusing if you didn’t read it first. That being said, I highly recommend this book! I can wait to see what comes next! I’m hoping for Sana’s book :)
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A second chance romance about forgiveness, cultural expectations, family, religion and acceptance.

TW: anxiety, depression, panic attacks, racism, sexism, fetal loss

I loved this story from the beginning, its about Preeti Patel who gets to chance with the first guy she ever loved Daniel Thompson when he comes back into her life. This second chance romance is also a forced proximity romance.

Preeti is a medical resident who has a lot on her plate. She busy at work, trying to find a permanent position after her residency ends, she needs to find a apartment and she also struggles with her mental health and a touch aversion. She locates a place where she can stay until she gets a job, but she has to share it with her ex-boyfriend Daniel Thompson for a few weeks. Six years ago, Preeti ended things with Daniel without giving him a reason and has been avoiding him ever since but is still close with his sister and his grandparents, they love Preeti!! The forced proximity of living together, pushes Preeti to acknowledge that her feelings for Daniel never when away although she is expected to marry someone else and eventually reveal why she broke up with him. Preeti loves her job, her family and friends are very important to her and because of this she puts everyone else in her life first.

Daniel returns in TTWHY at Reema's wedding and as soon as Preeti saw him, she goes and actively avoids him. Daniel's feelings for Preeti hasn't changed but he is still upset about her ending things with him without giving him an explanation. He makes the best of their living situation, and he wants answers that Preeti won't give him. Daniel, like Preeti has to deal with family expectations, he's comes from a prominent and affluent Black family and mostly his father who he has a contentious relationship with has very high expectations of him.

There wasn't a lot of angst, which I loved. Preeti and Daniel's love for each other was more on the memories of their past relationship than on any new significant development in the present. He constantly teased her about the little things that he still knew about her, he cooked for her, taught her how to cook and even helped her when he knew she was struggling with her mental health. I liked that he wasn't willing to let her go a second time, he fought for her and Preeti made the best of the living situation for herself and ultimately was used to being around Daniel in a shared space and reexamine her own hurts when she gets a second chance at a relationship with the love of her life. Their love for each other grew over the pages and Daniel is such a romantic, he showered Preeti with love, compassion and so much affection and gave her peonies (my favourite flowers)!!

This story goes beyond the romance, it examines the religion, and community in the Hindu Indian diaspora and how the community treats young women who are comfortable with their sexuality and somehow the older generation still have outdated views on the role of women in relationships and marriage.

Thank you to Netgalley and Forever for an eARC, in exchange for an honest review. This review is cross posted on Instagram and Goodreads.
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Preeti Patel is about to realize her dream of being a doctor. She is forced to look for alternate living arrangements and decides to move into her friend's vacant apartment for a couple of months. But, her ex Daniel Thompson is also living there for a few weeks. Preeti is forced to confront the past and all the family drama that led to her running away from Daniel. Will the close proximity give her closure or will it rekindle the feeling that she kept buried for 6 year painful years?

First Love, Take Two by Sajini Patel is all about second chances. It was nice to see a romance novel address issues like racism, mental health and family drama. Daniel was a little too saccharine and Preeti was annoying in some parts. There was a little too much of over the top cultural drama that could have been toned down. Overall a good read. Would rate the book 4 stars.
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A very happy pub day to First Love, Take Two by Sajni Patel! And thank you to Forever, Sajni Patel and Netgalley 
for the gifted ARC 💕 Definitely my favorite book of the year so far! 

Quick Synopsis: Preeti never quite got over Daniel Thompson. Super-hot, plenty of swagger, amazing cook-the guy is practically perfect. And if it weren’t for their families, there might have been a happily every after. But it’s hard to keep her sanity and libido in check when the man of her dreams is sleeping mere feet away. Can Preeti and Daniel find a way to stand up and fight for each other one last time . . . before they lose their second chance?

What I loved:

1. Preeti was a strong female lead. Period. 
2. The diversity in this book was unreal. Not only does it have diverse characters but it revolves around real life issues- interracial marriages/relationships between two VERY different cultures. This is something that you rarely read about it Sajni did an amazing job writing about it. 
3. I absolutely adored every character! Of course there was family drama but the love from their friends and family, how Daniel’s grandparents loved Preeti, and how supportive Preeti’s friends were had me in awe. I was invested in everyone by the end of the book. 
4. I need a Daniel in my life. Until then, I’ll keep reading the book pretending he’s mine 😉
5. Lastly, I love Sajni’s writing. I loved how she weaved real life issues into the story. There was racism, fear and anxiety, aversion, therapy and mental health, and more. But what made the book more enjoyable to read is I didn’t feel the heaviness of it all. 

A 5⭐️ read for me! 
.
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I was a huge fan of Patel’s The Trouble with Hating You so I was so excited for First Love, Take Two. This book brings up several important topics, however I found the love lacking between Preeti and Daniel. 

Patel discusses racism in the Indian community and I really like the way she handled it. Preeti went from being a passive character that couldn’t stand up for herself or others to channeling her inner bad ass and putting her aunties in their place. I loved that aspect of this book!  Patel also brings up mental health, mainly anxiety, and I think it written in such a fantastic way. Daniel was very supportive of Preeti’s anxiety, even sitting with her through her first therapy session. I applaud that scene because that’s how all partners should support each other.

My main issue is that Preeti and Daniel were at odds for about 70% of the book. I didn’t feel like there was enough time for me to get behind them as a couple because of Preeti’s resistance lasted so long. With that being said, I did still enjoy this book. It had its cute moments and I really like Preeti as a character.

*TW: mental health, death of infant, discussion of sexual assault
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This was the perfect follow up to The Trouble of Hating You! These books are so heartfelt, and I really appreciated the discussion on mental health. You also see the importance of a supporting family and sticking up for yourself and those you love. You could see the difference in the relationships between Daniel, Yuvan and Preeti. Daniel and Preeti are my new favorite couple!

Thank you Forever and Netgalley for you eARC in exchange for a honest review!
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Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with an e-Arc of this book!

cw/tws: sexual harassment (mentioned), stillbirth, anti-Blackness, misogyny

First Love, Take Two is a second chance romance by Sajni Patel. Preeti, a medical resident, is forced to live with her ex Daniel, whom she left years ago due to the pressures of her community. As the two spend more time together, they realize that the feelings they left behind aren’t really left behind...and you’ll have to read it to find out!

First things first, although this book is technically the second in a series, it works well as a standalone, meaning you don’t have to read The Trouble with Hating You to understand the events of this one, although they are mentioned. The romance in this book is incredibly compelling - I loved both Preeti and Daniel as characters. Daniel especially is such a stand-up guy, and he’s definitely the kind of person that Preeti needs.

Beyond this, the book also deals with various issues, namely anti-Blackness in Indian communities, classism, and mental health stigma. I cannot speak on the first two issues, but I believe that Sajni did handle the topics as sensitively as she could. However, I’m not sure if I agree with the equivalency of the classism in Daniel’s community with the racism in Preeti’s. Without spoilers, I do think Preeti tried her best to make up for her past actions, and Daniel’s reactions were realistic. The book also touches on mental health stigma, I believe fairly well. Mental health is treated just as importantly as physical health, as it should be.

I think where this book suffered again was that the dialogue would come off as preachy or ungainly at times, and occasionally when Preeti was talking to her friends I wasn’t sure how realistic the dialogue really was. This was an issue I had with The Trouble with Hating You as well, but it wasn’t overly distracting.

Overall, a pretty solid read!

3.5/5, rounded up
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Great read

I really enjoyed this book, so much that I stayed up very late finishing it!  Although I read the first book in the series, this one does not require reading the first, although it would explain some things.  Nor does the author spend too much time explaining the past.

The heroine is at once exotic but very familiar.  She is stressed due to finishing her medical residency (Chief Resident at that!), family stresses, no job (yet), no home (roommate married), etc.  Her first love has resurfaced, but both families made that difficult in the past...  I won't tell you more, you need to read it for yourself!

Thank you to the publisher who lent me a time-constrained e-arc via Netgalley.  This review is optional and my own opinion!
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I am very much a fan of forced proximity, second chance romance, and only one bed, and I really enjoyed that this book contained all of those elements. I also appreciated the exploration of racism in Preethi’s South Asian community and the discussions surrounding her mental health. The author didn’t shy away from exploring the toll Preeti’s anxiety had taken on her life and her relationships, though I did kind of roll my eyes at a doctor blaming herself for her mother’s heart attack. I didn’t feel super connected with Preeti and Daniel’s relationship — as with a lot of other one POV romances I’ve read, he seemed too good to be true, and I didn’t feel like we fully explored why he loved her and had been pining for her for six years. I also was a bit uncomfortable with some of the scenes at the beginning when Preeti was still technically engaged. I felt like I missed out of a bit of info, especially in the beginning of the book, from the first installment in this series, so I may pick that one up to try to fill in some of those blanks! The audio was pretty good, though I do wish the quality of the app would be better (but of course that's not on the book!!).
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4.5 stars - This one's in my top 5 of 2021! I loved everything about this story, it has plenty of humor, romance, and real-life problems.

If any of these interest you, then add this to your TBR now:

*Forced proximity
*Second chance romance
*Strong female lead
*Anxiety/Depression
*Touch aversion
*Diversity

While this is a great series, each book can be read as a stand alone. This is a wonderful representation of the difficulties between families, especially when there's a difference of religion or race.

Aside from the main characters (which I honestly couldn't get enough of), the most entertaining part of the story for me was Preeti's best friends, and I never wanted the audiobook to end.
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First Love, Take Two by Sajni Patel is my favorite book of her series so far. Of course, I'm intrigued by anything medical-related, so when I saw this would be Dr. Preeti Patel's story, I knew I would love it! This story is a second-chance forced-proximity romance between Preeti and Daniel. I appreciate the authentic inclusion of mental health and anxiety addressed with the main character. I highly recommend this book and audiobook because you will not regret falling for this love story!

Thank you, Forever and Hachette Audio, for my complimentary copies for this honest review.
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While First Love, Take Two was a quick read, it was a mixed bag for me. 
On the plus side, I liked Preeti's character development. Standing up for herself to her elders, finally coming clean about why she broke up with Daniel and letting the guilt go and most importantly admitting she needs professional help to manage her anxiety took courage.  I also liked that this was forced proximity romance where the exes Preeti and Daniel forced to cohabitate and try to fight the attraction. 

The things I didn't care for: I've finally came to a realization that second chance romance is not a romance trope I enjoy a whole a lot. If there were flashbacks to their relationship 6 years ago and showed us how they fell in love and what made them perfect for each other (they never really got over each other) I'd have enjoyed this story more. 
  
Lastly, I am in no position to comment on the accuracy of the hostile environment Preeti (and also Liya from Trouble with Hating You) finds herself in her Indian community. But I feel like there were too much negativity surrounding the couple it prevented me from being invested in the romance.  

I think readers who liked The Trouble with Hating You and enjoy women's fiction with romance elements would like First Love, Take Two.
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Y'all think you've read book boyfriends before. But let me introduce you to the king of them all - Daniel. This man is so sensitive, in-tune, and just a perfect match for Preeti.

I love when a romance or rom com is so much deeper than surface level, and just like The Trouble With Hating You (also loved, btw) this story focuses on so much more. Anxiety, sensory differences, and cultural expectations are a big focus of Preeti's story, as she struggles to find a balance between her needs and her family's wishes, while being true to herself.

I would recommend reading The Trouble With Hating You fairly close to this book. It's been some time since I read TTWHY and I was a bit rusty on some of the characters and situations this book referenced. Not a knock on the novel, but more so on me.

Content warnings: racism, stillbirth, mental health.

Full review to come on bookstagram.
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#FirstLoveTakeTwo:

“I never hated her. One second in her presence and there is no one else.”

First off, read the first book. I think it’s necessary, some may not. But, The Trouble With Hating You is also wonderful, so, just read it. 

I cannot remember the last second chance book I’ve read and I really liked how this one. There’s usually some great misunderstanding that communication can fix. I mean, it is, but it’s on a much much level. I don’t want to spoil it. It just seemed more realistic to me and I can see this playing out in real life, as it does. This was different and I appreciated that. 

What I really liked is that Patel discusses so many important issues like touch aversion, xenophobia, racism, anxiety, mental health, but it adds an element to the story that helps us understand Daniel and Preeti as humans. It doesn’t take away from the plot into a subplot that solely takes away the focus on the romance. It’s wonderfully crafted and I think extremely effective. (Preeti goes offfffff about the blatant racism and then tries to slam the door but it’s automatic so it just slowly shuts. Hilarious) 

Overall I really loved Preeti and just seeing her evolve as a person. I loved Daniel and his kindness and strength. I loved how he cared so much for Preeti, especially when talking to ole Dad. 

Thank you so much forever for the gifted copy. First Love, Take Two was so enjoyable, and I really liked the ending. This comes out 9/22 (tomorrow) 🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️.5 from me

TW: all mentioned above but also, pregnancy complications, stillborn birth, mention of sexual assault
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