ARC Review: The Mismatch by Sara Jafari

Happy Friday y’all! I keep meaning to write up a June/July wrap up and August TBR but work and workout classes (and cooking!) are making my life so busy that I have no time to write any of my blogs- I barely have time to read these days too, but I’m making time for that. I did finally finish a book last night though, and I have all the thoughts- thank you so much to Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine/Dell and Netgalley for letting me read an eARC of The Mismatch (which is out now, so if y’all are interested in it, you can definitely go grab it).

The Mismatch 3.5/5 Stars

Summary from Goodreads: For a young woman who just wants to get her first kiss out of the way, a rugby player seems like the perfect mismatch. But a kiss is never just a kiss. . . .

Now that Soraya Nazari has graduated from university, she thinks it’s time she get some of the life experience that she feels she’s still lacking, partly due to her upbringing–and Magnus Evans seems like the perfect way to get it.

Whereas she’s the somewhat timid, artistic daughter of Iranian immigrants, Magnus is the quintessential British lad. Because they have so little in common, Soraya knows there’s no way she could ever fall for him, so what’s the harm in having a little fun as she navigates her postgrad life? Besides, the more she discovers about her mother’s past and the strain between her parents, the less appealing marriage becomes.

Before long, Soraya begins to realize that there’s much more to Magnus than meets the eye. But could she really have a relationship with him? Is she more like her mother than she ever would have thought?

With unforgettable characters at its heart, The Mismatch is a gorgeously written coming-of-age story that shows that love can be found in even the most unexpected places. 

So, let me just start off by saying that the summary is barely like the book- like sure, you see those things in the book, but it’s so much more. Like, based on the summary, I would have assumed it was going to be a cute romance (which, I mean I totally did), but OMG no, this book was anything but. It was so heavy and dealt with so much grief and family pain and abuse and addiction and what it means to be the child of an immigrant growing up somewhere where you’re so different and your parents’ religious beliefs are so woven into your culture, that you can’t really separate the two so even if you aren’t the same level of religious, you kind of are (if it wasn’t obvious, I very much identify with the whole child of immigrants thing). In general, I really liked The Mismatch and everything it explored, but what I didn’t like was the mismatch (lol) with the summary given to me and what actually happened in the book, which is why I gave it a 3.5. In terms of the book itself, I really liked how Soraya was questioning why certain things had to happen certain ways and how she decided to go after Magnus because she wanted the experience- what a great romance novel trope! I also really liked how we got a look into what Hossain and Neda’s life was like when they were younger, before he became an addict- it showed a really good glimpse into why their family life was the way it was and why Soraya felt the way she did about somethings and her coping mechanisms vs Parvins. I also liked how the book began with this big moment between Neda and Laleh and then you spend so much of the rest of the book trying to figure out exactly what happened, until everything ends up boiling over and coming to head. Specific things that still really irk me about the book are that Soraya completely glossed over the fact that Magnus called her exotic- and I know she said that she didn’t make a big deal about it because he was attractive but ew. As someone who has been called exotic on dates/dating apps before, that’s so gross, especially since her and Magnus stay together for a while after that. Amir’s obliviousness to the double standards between him and his sisters plus to how gross and terrible his father was still annoys me- it’s like open your eyes! You still live there! You should be able to see that your sisters can’t have boyfriends or even be seen with men but you can have ridiculously loud sex in the house at any point in time and nothing happens. Again, overall, this book was super interesting and I’m really glad I read it, but 100% do not go into it thinking you’re getting a lighthearted, cute romance (or even any sort of romance at all really).

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