Cover Image: First Love, Take Two

First Love, Take Two

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Member Reviews

I had to DNF this book. It read like an insiders club that i wasn't privy too. I was frustrated that it kept illudiding at events that weren't on page. I gave it a good shot, like 35% before i gave up. I couldn't connect to any of the characters.
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This book was so adorable! It was my first time reading Sajni Patel and it did not disappoint. I thought the way the book handled real life issues that are dealt with in relationships was really well done. Preeti suffers from anxiety, and it was so interesting to explore that aspect of her relationships. A partner can either help or make it so much worse depending on how they act. Preeti is also part of a big, traditional Indian family where everyone knows everything about each other. I loved learning about her culture and how she held her own against the gossip mill. Overall this was a cute second chance romance full of chemistry and tension between the characters. But don’t come looking for steam, it’s very much a fade to black kind of story.
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ARC provided by netgalley in exchange of an honest review. 

This second chance romance was a complete disappointment and utterly unforgettable. It's the second book in a romantic series and while I had not read the previous book I decided to give this one a chance because the plot was really intriguing. While I understood their background as a couple and as individuals perfectly, there's definitely a sense of being dropped midway through a series as the author dedicates a lot of time to reminiscing about their past dynamics as a couple without giving us new flashbacks instead deciding to tell us how perfect they were together. Thus, I could never really get invested in their relationship because while they were supportive of each other and shared cute moments most of the time was spent crying over the past. 

My main issue with this romance is the author's writing style, it's not something I enjoy and I couldn't enjoy the story itself because of it. The way the inner narration of the main character is written feels very exaggerated and not authentic, I also had a personal issue of the exclamation marks because it just read weird to me. Aside from that, the way the issues of racism and the cheating that the main character did to her fiancee with Daniel as well as her confrontation of aunts was very rushed and was not dealt with in an appropriate manner and thus left me unsatisfied with the resolution. Everything felt superficial and the main character just kept ignoring the issues around her and while she did grow as a person it became kind of annoying to see how she could never verbalize anything. 

The characters were not likeable, their relationship was not believable, the writing style was not to my taste, their ending was again too rushed. I wouldn't read from this author again. 

So, why did I give it 2 stars? Well, I didn't hate it and at times enjoyed how Daniel took care of Pree. They had some cute moments but it didn't save the book for me.
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I am not going to lie this book was HEAVY. Way heavier than my typical romance. my biggest feeling coming out of this book is waiting for the romance to take center stage. I think it took a backseat to family drama and mental health issues. I would have loved to feel more angst between main characters. I enjoyed the cultural aspect of the book though!
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A romance book with second chance romance AND forced proximity? You can’t convince me otherwise - this book was written for me! Oh, and wait… There’s only one bed too!

At its core, First Love, Take Two, is a book about learning that it’s okay to put yourself first. For the past few years, Preeti has put everyone’s needs before hers. She blames herself for her mom’s health scare, so she has been doing everything she can to make her parents happy, including getting engaged to a man she doesn’t love. She also broke up with the love of her life, Daniel, because she believes it will be better for him and everyone around her. Fast forward to the present - Preeti and Daniel will be living in the same house for the next three weeks, and this is the first time they’ll be around each other for an extended period of time after their break up.

There’s so much pain and so many things that have yet to be said between Preeti and Daniel, but what I love about their relationship is that their care for each other always powers through. Preeti is the first to comfort Daniel about his relationship with his father, and Daniel is the first to recognize what Preeti needs to get through her panic attacks. There is so much love between them, and seeing their interactions - the way they lend each other support; the way they tease and poke fun at each other; the way they help each other - had me rooting so hard for them. 

I’m not going to lie - First Love, Take Two, at times, was a difficult read, but oh so rewarding. I related so much to Preeti, and sometimes I had to pause while reading because the scenes with her panic and anxiety attacks felt a little too close to home. However, here’s a certain kind of relief, almost, in seeing my experiences in black and white through Preeti’s character. Reading about Preeti’s journey made me realize that I’m not alone, and that there’s no shame in asking for help. Patel also explored the difficulties Preeti and Daniel had to face, being in an interracial relationship - the racism Daniel faces as a Black man, the cultural differences between their backgrounds, and the pressure they both have to live up to their family’s expectations - and I appreciated the respectful and masterful way these serious topics were handled.

All in all, Patel crafted a beautiful second chance romance with First Love, Takes Two, and she left no stone unturned. There’s so much depth to this story, and I loved getting to know Preeti and Daniel. I ended this book feeling so happy and satisfied, and it took a few days before I could pick up another read. The book hangover was that intense!
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This is the second book in the series but can be read as a standalone. This book deals with a couple of traumatic issues, miscarriage/stillborn, racism, mental health issues of anxiety and depression, family conflict. I rate this a 4.5 stars. Preeti comes from a close knit religious Indian family which causes many triggers for her. Daniel is black and used to racism. The two of them broke up due to ... The author knows how to write a story that deals with and confronts many issues in a very realistic way. I highly recommend you read this to help you understand  mental health and its impact on relationships and family. If you enjoy a book with a plot and good romance this is for you!

I received an ARC for my honest opinion from NetGalley.
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I loved this book just as much as the first in the series, The Trouble With Hating You. Preeti was such a loveable character, building her own while balancing the expectations of her family. Daniel is such a good match for her and following them as they find their way back to one another after ending their romance was heart-warming. I love Patel’s stories for their view of the Desi culture and careful representation of interracial relationships. I am eagerly awaiting her next book!

Thanks to Sajni Patel, Forever (Grand Central Publishing), and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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First Read, True Love

Preeti and Daniel were deeply in love but six years ago she broke it off without explanation. Now they are temporarily sharing a friend’s apartment…what could wrong?  Or very, very right? 

Preeti struggles with anxiety and depression and it is explored in such a raw and real way.  Daniel’s unwavering support and love of Preeti is so beautiful and inspiring.  The navigation of an interracial couple through her traditional Indian culture and his wealthy Black family and friends adds even more depth to the story.  

While I would classify this as low angst it is very emotional and could trigger some reads. I would recommend checking out the author’s and other reviews content/trigger warnings. 

Now I’m so ready for Sana’s story! 

I received a complimentary review copy of this book but all opinions are my own.
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have been in a bit of a reading slump and this book really helped pull me out of it at least temporarily. I read the first book in the series last summer and absolutely loved it (that being said, reading the first book is not a requirement to enjoying this one). I knew within the first few pages of the first chapter that I was going to enjoy this equally as well.

This is a second chance romance. Preeti and Daniel dated through college but broke up six years previously. Both are in need of a place to stay for a few weeks while in between apartments and are offered a mutual friend’s one bedroom apartment to share. Of course sparks fly but their is a lot of hurt that needs resolved and overcome before the two can fully come together again.

I really really really liked Preeti. She is a doctor, which we don’t see enough of in romance, and has anxiety, panic attacks, and touch phobia, and lord knows we really don’t see enough mental health representation in romance. As someone who has anxiety and has panic attacks I found the depiction of both wonderfully portrayed in the book, and found the openness for the need for both therapy and at times medication very refreshing. I also really really really liked Daniel. The book is entirely from Preeti’s perspective, but I still felt like I was able to get the full picture of who Daniel is just from her interactions and observations about him. Together the two had amazing chemistry and I was always rooting for them.

In addition to the mental health discussion. This book handles difficult topics like familial expectations, toxic cultural traditions, and racism. All of these topics were handled in a head on but in a realistic manor. I liked that these things were not magically resolved, because these issues do not really have a solution.

I will happily read a third book in this series should there be one. Thank you to NetGalley and Forever for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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4.5 stars. I loved this book maybe even more than the first. It addressed so many of life’s issues ( racism, mental health, family expectations). I also always love when you pick a book up and you know where the story is going, but the ride is what makes it so worth the read. I cheered for Preeti all along the way. I loved seeing her grow more confident in herself and make tough decisions. I cheered too for Daniel who too was faced with tough decisions but never faltered in his ways. He was a heart melt-y character. Though Patels books aren’t your typical romance books, I truly do love them.
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I loved Preeti and Daniel’s story so much! I got very strong Helen Hoang The Heart Principle vibes from this one, and I wasn’t mad about it! I really enjoyed the dynamic between the two main characters, and I think the emphasis on open communication and support for one another is such an important topic to tackle. It was refreshing to see each of them develop personally to better themselves for the sake of their love being able to survive. This was the type of story that had me go down a rabbit hole of internet searches, particularly about different traditions and terms used in the Indian culture. I love when a book sparks that curiosity for me, which is why I always tend to select ones with characters different from myself. While there were times I wanted to yell at Preeti because I was nervous she wasn’t going to go after Daniel, I absolutely loved this book!
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And here I thought I loved Liya and Jay until I read first love take two and completely fell in love with Daniel and Pree more!!  Sajni Patel never disappoints, beautiful story, not enough words to justify how much I enjoyed it. Absolutely loved this book.
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The Trouble with Hating you was one of my favorites from last year and I was very excited to read this one. Sanji Patel writes excellent chemistry and it was easy to root for this couple. I loved the culture and life experience each character brought to the relationship. I listened to a portion of this on audio and really enjoyed the narrator - plus it was an easy book to listen to on 2x speed!

🥰really liked
🤟second chance, one bed, mental health rep
📚Sara Desi, Abby Jimenez
🎶Never Really Over by Katy Perry
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This one fell a little flat for me. Preeti tipped over into annoying, and some of the dialogue and descriptions seemed forced and choppy. This is the second in a series, and while I followed along pretty well, I think it would be best if you read the first book. I've heard a lot of good things about the first book in the series, so I may read that at some point. As for First Love, Take Two, there are a lot of books that tackle similar tropes and themes and do it better.
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A second chance romance where former lovers Preeti and Daniel are forced to live together, helping explore a long lost relationship that should have never come to an end. Full of intense sexual tension and a focus on mental health and racism, this romance is sexy and super refreshing!

Preeti broke it off with Daniel because of his father and the stress from the Indian community, but Preeti never told him why. Now that they are forced to live together, Preeti must finally face Daniel and all the cowardly decisions she made in the past. Can Preeti finally tell Daniel the truth and can their love thrive even though there is so much going against them?

This book does an excellent job of explaining what I personally experience during anxiety. I related to this book on such a personal level. I love that Patel explains the stigmas behind mental health and the disservice we do to ourselves by not addressing mental struggles. She also brought up racism and by the end of the book I wanted to stand up and cheer when Preeti made her speech to the aunties! This book is a reflection of all the soap boxes I want to stand on and a beautiful depiction of true love, growth, and the strength to speak out. A relevant romance with a lot of heart!
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Loved it 😍 it was amazing, heart warming and fierce. I was lucky enough to grab an arc copy - but I also treated myself to the audio and a physical copy for my favorites shelf 🤗

I read the first book last year The Trouble With Hating You (Liya’s story) and knew right away that I’d be grabbing this one, since I was intrigued by Preeti and Daniel. 

This book was just everything I needed it to be. The story managed to navigate that tricky line of telling a romance story while balancing real world issues in a compelling way. It found the balance to address a number of relatable and real vent issues while still delivering that romance essence and not losing the vibe. 

I was blown away. I loved all of the characters, particularly Preeti’s squad and I loved seeing the evolution of her relationship with her parents. I think one of the things that stood out and spoke to me most was the representation this book gave to Mental Health, particularly Anxiety and Panic Disorder. I thought the author gave such thought and care to addressing this and did a wonderful job of showing what this type of Anxiety / Panic can look and feel like. It was one of the better representations I’ve read.

In terms of the romance itself, this one just had an excellent array of tropes to satisfy. Preeti and Daniel are exes who have not crossed paths in the last six years. Do it was a second chance romance, but wait for it - they are now temporary ‘roommates’…and are forced to share a space and there is of course only one bed 😊

I was 100% here for all of it - definitely one of my top reads of the year and one I will highly recommend. 

Thank you to @NetGalley and @ReadForeverPub for the chance to be an arc reader for one of my most anticipated reads of the year 💕💕

TW / CW; Mental Health Struggles, Racism, Fetal Death, Heart Attack (off page, spoken of)
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Thank you Forever Pub and Netgalley for an arc of First Love, Take Two. I loved the Trouble With Hating You so I was super excited for this book.

While I enjoyed it, there was something that didn't click for me. It may have been that her anxiety was too close to home. It was mentioned in the author's note, but I struggled with the stillbirth and whether it was necessary for the story line. 

I loved the chemistry between Daniel and Preeti. He was so sweet and caring despite Preeti constantly pushing him away. I loved how he always seemed to know when she needed some support like playing guitar for her. He was the epitome of boyfriend goals. I think Preeti tried to return the favor, but was struggling so much between her job, her anxiety and her family obligations. It's always so eye opening to me about much culture and religion plays into relationships. I loved Preeti's group of friends including Liya who we met in the first book. 

I'm still a fan and excited to see what Sajni Patel writes next. I'm hoping one of the Preeti's friends is next! 

I will update with the link when I post on my bookstagram account.
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Thank you to NetGalley and Forever Publishing for this ARC in exchange for an honest review!

3/5 ⭐️s

Oh boy.  I wanted to love this book so much.  Second chance lovers, forced proximity/roommates…This had potential!  Unfortunately, it just didn’t hit that sweet spot for me.

Preeti is finishing up her residency and preparing for her future as a doctor while seeing dating the ideal Indian man, the man her parents hope will soon become her husband.  The only problem?  Her ex, Daniel, is back in town, and they’re temporary roommates.

What I Loved:
- Daniel and Preeti’s quiet moments where they fell back into the easy nature of their past relationship.  They were soothing and natural, and it did way more to show these two were meant to be than any words either of them said.
- At one moment, Daniel slowly strips in front of Preeti.  That scene alone earned this an entire extra star in my rating. 🥵
- Preeti finding her voice and standing up for the people she loved.
- Preeti’s anxiety was handled really well.  It was acknowledged without judgment, and she sought professional help when she needed to.  Loved that.

What I Didn’t Love:
- I ended up skim reading about halfway through.  Daniel and Preeti both like to repeat themselves and argue over the same things A LOT.  This book would’ve benefited from being 50 pages shorter and cutting out the repetitive arguments.
- So much of this story took place six years ago.  Why they broke up.  The racism and hate they faced.  His dad’s disapproval.  We see almost none of that in the present.  This leaves us only being told what happened and how it made them feel instead of letting us experience that alongside them.  It made for a boring read.
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This book was a quick, cute read, the second book to the trouble with hating you series, telling Preeti and Daniel’s story. This was enjoyable, I just really enjoyed the trouble with hating you more.  I liked Preeti’s parents though and how they were always in her corner.
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Harlequin Junkie Recommends!

Preeti Patel should be in her element after all her hard work, long nights and even longer days have finally paid of, well sort of, with her residency almost over Preeti is one step closer to being a fully fledged doctor. The only issue being she is about to be out of a place to live and she still needs to find a permanent position at the hospital. With her roommate having just got married the last thing Preeti wants to do is be a third wheel and cramp their bubble of happiness which is exactly how she finds herself rooming with non other than the devilishly charming Daniel Thompson!

Now this shouldn’t be an issue right, rooming with a good looking and talented cook sounds like a dream to most girls, well it would be if Daniel wasn’t the guy that still held Preeti’s heart in his hands! With her overly involved parents constantly all up in her personal business will Preeti and Daniel finally be able to work around all the obstacles that pop up in their path?

I absolutely loved getting to see both Preeti and Daniel grow as individuals but also as a couple. In the six years since their break up you can see that both have grown and can handle the opinions of others in a more mature way. However it was Preeti that really stood out for me, I loved that she finally stood up for herself and what she wants and who she wants to be with. The tension between these two was HOT! I loved getting to see them try and work through their old feelings while trying to navigate their new situation.

One of the big topics in this novel was race and racism. Even with Preeti and Daniel coming from two different races and having to face a whole lot of backlash on their mixed race relationship, I found that the entire thing was handled very tastefully. Aside from a few heavy topic this book was very much a feel good read with a kickbutt female lead that found her own way breaking down all the walls put in front of her!

First Love, Take Two by @sajnipatelbooks is a definite must read! This second chance meets forced proximity romance will have you rooting for this couple on in their journey to happily ever after!
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