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Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words

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A charming NYC romance by co-host of the Woke Desi, for fans of: • multicultural connections • strong friendships and families • a “will they/won’t they” story with powerful stakes • the city that never sleeps • bucket list adventures • characters who fight outside expectations and pressures to build the life they want Kiran needs to fall in line. Instead, she falls in love. K A charming NYC romance by co-host of the Woke Desi, for fans of: • multicultural connections • strong friendships and families • a “will they/won’t they” story with powerful stakes • the city that never sleeps • bucket list adventures • characters who fight outside expectations and pressures to build the life they want Kiran needs to fall in line. Instead, she falls in love. Kiran was the good daughter. When her sister disobeyed her family’s plan and brought them shame, she was there to pick up the pieces. She vowed she wouldn’t make the same mistakes. She’d be twice the daughter her parents needed, to make up for the one they lost. Nash never had a family. The parents who were supposed to raise him were completely absent. Now as a psychologist, he sees the same pattern happening to the kids he works with. So he turns away from love and family. After all, abandonment is in his genes, isn’t it? If she follows the rules, Kiran will marry an Indian man. If he follows his fears, Nash will wind up alone. But what if they follow their hearts?


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A charming NYC romance by co-host of the Woke Desi, for fans of: • multicultural connections • strong friendships and families • a “will they/won’t they” story with powerful stakes • the city that never sleeps • bucket list adventures • characters who fight outside expectations and pressures to build the life they want Kiran needs to fall in line. Instead, she falls in love. K A charming NYC romance by co-host of the Woke Desi, for fans of: • multicultural connections • strong friendships and families • a “will they/won’t they” story with powerful stakes • the city that never sleeps • bucket list adventures • characters who fight outside expectations and pressures to build the life they want Kiran needs to fall in line. Instead, she falls in love. Kiran was the good daughter. When her sister disobeyed her family’s plan and brought them shame, she was there to pick up the pieces. She vowed she wouldn’t make the same mistakes. She’d be twice the daughter her parents needed, to make up for the one they lost. Nash never had a family. The parents who were supposed to raise him were completely absent. Now as a psychologist, he sees the same pattern happening to the kids he works with. So he turns away from love and family. After all, abandonment is in his genes, isn’t it? If she follows the rules, Kiran will marry an Indian man. If he follows his fears, Nash will wind up alone. But what if they follow their hearts?

30 review for Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words

  1. 4 out of 5

    Avani ✨

    2.5 stars Love, Chai & Other Four Letter Words by Annika Sharma, is the first book in the Chai Masala Club series. A desi, multicultural romance novel set in a city which never sleeps, New York. We see our main characters, Kiran & Nash. Both come with their own set of baggage to carry, but what if they follow their heart? Kiran, an Indian girl from a village in India goes to New York to study and Nash, who is a psychologist has parental issues, which makes him have commitment issues in the presen 2.5 stars Love, Chai & Other Four Letter Words by Annika Sharma, is the first book in the Chai Masala Club series. A desi, multicultural romance novel set in a city which never sleeps, New York. We see our main characters, Kiran & Nash. Both come with their own set of baggage to carry, but what if they follow their heart? Kiran, an Indian girl from a village in India goes to New York to study and Nash, who is a psychologist has parental issues, which makes him have commitment issues in the present. Kiran's family being very conservative makes Kiran not fall for any guy which doesn't come in her family's approved list of men (Indian). So to begin with, Annika Sharma has a lot of potential in writing a good rom-com. I loved the execution of this book as well as author's writing style. What I did not enjoy however, was the way Indian Culture was portrayed. To some levels I feel and do agree to the fact that families and parents being a little conservative as well as a little bit orthodox does happen everywhere and not just in Indian Culture. I would not want people from other cultures who have read about Indian culture for the first time having such a negative image. The family bonding and Kiran's sisters issues were all somewhere expectable. I liked Akash (Kiran's friend) more than Nash (Main Character), I would love to see a book about him. I definitely have a love-hate relationship with this book. Nash, to some extend had very limited character development. Nothing about his family and past background was clear since so much focus was given on Kiran's issues and problems with Indian Culture. The friendship of the Chai Masala Club as the only good thing which I genuinely liked and had no baggage to hold.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ayushi

    Thank you so much to Sourcebooks Casablanca for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review! Ugh. I’m so conflicted about my thoughts about Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words, especially after seeing that it featured a South Asian MC. Don’t get me wrong, this series (which I presume is going to be four books long) has an interesting premise. The premise follows four South Asian friends living in NYC in their 30’s, who have coined themselves as the ‘Chai Masala Club,’ on their i Thank you so much to Sourcebooks Casablanca for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review! Ugh. I’m so conflicted about my thoughts about Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words, especially after seeing that it featured a South Asian MC. Don’t get me wrong, this series (which I presume is going to be four books long) has an interesting premise. The premise follows four South Asian friends living in NYC in their 30’s, who have coined themselves as the ‘Chai Masala Club,’ on their individual journeys to find love. There were parts that I really liked in this novel, but ultimately there were a ton of elements of the story that were huge turn-offs. Starting off with what I liked about this novel, I really love how this book features Indian rep. And by Indian rep, I mean rep for those born and raised in India. Most books with ‘Indian rep’ that are released in the U.S. publishing industry feature Indian-American rep, so I’m glad that Indian readers have proper representation for themselves! I also liked the discussions about Indian immigrants in the U.S. struggling to keep up with the lifestyle and culture of the U.S. and how they don’t feel as connected to their Indian-American peers. Additionally, I liked that Kiran, our MC, came from a low-income family back in India and how her journey to the U.S. was a huge deal and form of success for her family, which helped break the model minority myth. I also loved how even though all members of the Chai Masala Club come from different Indian backgrounds (Kiran is Indian, Payal is British-Indian, and Akash and Sonam are Indian-American), they all still consider themselves united as Indian. Now moving onto some elements I didn’t particularly like. Since this is a romance book, let’s start with the romance between Nash, our love interest, and Kiran. Let me start off by saying that I’m genuinely so tired of seeing women of color (especially South Asian women) being paired with mediocre white men in romance novels and have to bend over backwards to explain their culture and deal with their insensitive remarks. First, I found it shocking that as someone who lives in NYC, Nash was as oblivious to Indian culture as he was in this book. It was honestly exhausting seeing Kiran have to explain every little thing about her culture to him and to hear him spew incredibly offensive and insensitive remarks when it came to how Kiran’s parents treated her. His comments about how because she was in America she had freedom to leave her parents and freedom to choose decisions for herself as opposed to the ‘oppressive’ nature of India? NOT IT. I have absolutely no idea why Kiran didn’t just leave Nash then and there. It all felt very white savior-y for me. It honestly just seemed like she liked him solely because he helped her complete the items of her NYC bucket list and that he was there to listen to her rant about her day. That was genuinely the entire basis of their relationship, and it felt quite repetitive and bland as the chapters progressed. Next, moving onto the relationship between Kiran and her family. I was pretty disappointed to see that this book followed the “strict South Asian parents” trope. I wish Annika Sharma had moved on from this stereotype and instead featured South Asian parents who are loving and supportive, instead of painting them in a “backwards or oppressive” light. I’m glad that Kiran’s parents came around about her relationship with Nash at the end of the novel, but a lot of the stuff that they were saying over the phone to her when she first told them about Nash were truly appalling and I honestly felt like it did more harm than good. Similarly, ​​when Kiran goes to India, I really didn’t like how Annika Sharma painted India to be this run-down place filled with poverty. I think she could have utilized this scene to talk about how the economic disparity is caused by the Indian government rather than appealing to Eurocentric views of Asian countries. Some other elements that really raised a red-flag for me were the horrifying number of times Harry Potter was mentioned in this book. I know that there’s a running joke about how millennials are obsessed with Harry Potter, and apparently that joke proves to be true in this novel? I would hope that Annika Sharma would realize that this series and its author have caused immense pain and trauma for marginalized communities, especially the trans community, and that there was absolutely no need to mention the series as many times as Kiran did in this novel. Additionally, there was also a comment about Gandhi and his practice of non-violent protests that painted Gandhi in a positive light. I would also hope that Annika Sharma would realize that Gandhi is definitely not a good person and should not be considered a role-model for South Asians, or anyone anywhere. It just seemed strange considering that Annika Sharma is, according to her author bio, the co-founder and co-owner of The Woke Desi Podcast, there were so many elements in her novel that were not, in fact, woke. Also this is a minor issue but I’m pretty sure that the exchange of dialogue between Kiran and Nash about mac ‘n’ cheese being food for children vs. being food of the Gods is a rip-off of the same line about mac ‘n’ cheese between Nathan and Haley in the TV show One Tree Hill? Idk if that was on purpose or a complete coincidence, but it seemed a little strange to be a coincidence. Anyways, that’s where I fell with this novel. I’m intrigued to read the following books in this series, especially since Sonam and Akash are both Indian-American like me. Overall, however, I’d have to give this first novel in the Chai Masala Club series 2.5 stars because of the reasons mentioned above.

  3. 5 out of 5

    ABookNook

    ✨I know I was supposed to be paying attention to the main couple, but is it a bad thing that I was thirsting for the sexy, brown boy secondary character the whole time 😩?✨ Unfortunately, I find myself in a very conflicted position. I really wanted to enjoy this book, and I did in a way. But I still had a few issues with it. I think the conflicts I did have with the book are due to my personal tastes. So I don't want to stray readers from checking this book out if they would like. Don’t get me wro ✨I know I was supposed to be paying attention to the main couple, but is it a bad thing that I was thirsting for the sexy, brown boy secondary character the whole time 😩?✨ Unfortunately, I find myself in a very conflicted position. I really wanted to enjoy this book, and I did in a way. But I still had a few issues with it. I think the conflicts I did have with the book are due to my personal tastes. So I don't want to stray readers from checking this book out if they would like. Don’t get me wrong though, I know I will enjoy the other books in this series. I see so much potential for the others. It is just the story and relationship of this one in particular that I had small issues with. It probably might not be the case for the rest of the books. Tropes: - friends to lovers - completing the heroine’s bucket list together - fighting cultural norms - will they / won’t they - cute grand gesture - closed door romance - strong friendships First of all, let me say the Indian representation in this book was great. In the few books with South Asian representation we get, we mostly get South Asian-American representation, not characters who are actually from India originally. This story provides a wonderfully unique addition to the list of books with South Asian representation. Second, I really enjoyed Kiran’s friends. And we got a sexy Indian playboy in their little group of friends who knows how to respect women and can actually be just friends with them?! Yes please! Let's break those Indian stigmas! I cannot wait to read their stories. Third, I am a sucker for the bucket list trope. I think it was executed very well. It definetly made me want to write my own list and find a handsome hunk along the way. Now I unfortunately have to mention the few issues I had with the book. I am extremely tired of the only representation I see of my community that of a strict, toxic community that is desperately waiting to shove every woman into an arranged marriage or trying to oppress her. And while is the reality for many people, enough of a reality to need books that discuss that, it is not such a reality in the modern day that the only representation I see of the South Asian community in books is that toxic and archaic community. Especially when it takes place in America. I, personally, along with most of my brown friends and family (which is A LOT), have never experienced a community like this. Most experiences of South Asian people of 2021 is not like the stereotypes we are so used to seeing. The world is changing and so is South Asian culture and norm. Of course there are tiny lingering glimmers of the regressive culture that used to be a norm still present in our culture today, but I think that is the case for every culture. I don’t like seeing South Asian culture consistently get painted in this harmful light. I don’t like seeing my culture getting viewed as oppressive, strict, archaic, toxic, and regressive in everything I read. I am extremely saddened when I read books that still fall into these stereotypes. And publishing these stereotypes over and over again is so harmful. I am tried of seeing South Asian families and communities as regressive or oppressive. I wish Annika Sharma hadn’t given into that stereotype. Furthermore, I was really not happy when India was painted in poverty and grime tinted glasses in the book. This could have been a powerful opportunity to fight that stereotype. To discuss the wealth disparity, the difference in wealthy + middle class areas and lower class areas, how India is developing, etc. Unfortunately, that is not what happened. The white man’s burden vibes of Nash’s relationship with Kiran was a big red-flag for me. Do not get me wrong, I am not opposed to interracial romances at all! But when I see a smart, woman of color end up with a mediocre white man who doesn’t even know the ‘c’ in culture? Nuh uh. Nash had this preachy vibe to him whenever he talked about her relationship with her country or her parents that was not for me. He was supposed to be trying to help her, I know. But it felt very preachy to me. Very white man’s burden vibes. And all that for barely even knowing about Indian culture? No thank you. He was practically clueless about Indian culture. He lives in NYC, how does he not know anything? And in 2021? The way Sharma could have made this work is by having Kiran call him out or ask him to figure things out on his own. Unfortunately, that did not happen. I think I would have thought their relationship was cute or realistic if I didn’t get the weird, mediocre-white-man-trying-to-tell-me-how-to-live-my-life-without-really-knowing-about-my-culture vibes. The had glimmers of adorable, coupleness. But not enough to make me forget the off vibes of their relationship at times. My last issue was the dialogue. It was a little off for me. I don’t know how to put my finger on it. The best way to describe it is “buzzfeed, girl-boss millennials trying to write regular dialogue.” It felt very unnatural and teen-movie like. I know that does not make any sense, but if you read this, then you’ll know what I mean. One thing I did want to note was how I would not really categorize this book as a romance. I would say it’s more of a women’s fiction. The romance wasn’t as developed or focused on as Kiran’s personal journey and conflicts. And that's totally ok! As long as you know that you are going into a women's fictiony book and not a true romance. Also, just a little warning: there are a lot of Harry Potter references in this book. I don’t know what I think about that tbh. I know Sharma did not mean any harm though. Also, Kiran’s chai recipe was so wack. I think some other people noted this too. But Kiran, girl, you good? who hurt you? come drink my mom’s chai, it will all be ok. I will say, regardless of the things I said about the stereotypes in this book being archaic, I thought that the way Kiran dealt with her hurdles was well done. I loved reading her inner battles and her struggle to make everyone happy. Her development was very beautifully done, and it brought a lot of joy to my brown girl heart. I think Kiran is a wonderful addition to the "brown MCs we love" list. And all of her friends automatically make that list too. I am really sorry, I didn’t mean for this review to be harsh. I don't like being harsh on books at all because I believe that it is important to find the best in every book. And I don't like being mean. If my review came off as mean at any point, please know that I have no issue with Annika Sharma (she is actually so cool and so nice) or Sourcebooks Casablanca. There was nothing inherently wrong or offensive with this book. So it technically is OwnVoices approved by me. I know I would have enjoyed this book a lot more if it had come out a few years ago. It is just, that this book reads a little aged in today’s day and age. I am very excited to read the other books in the series. I think Sharma has great opportunity with this series to fight some stereotypes and craft a new story for the South Asian community. I look forward to see what she does. I know I will for sure read the rest of the books in the series. And Akash. . . . . call me 😏 (I cannot wait to read his book. Someone get this man an HEA. Preferably with me. I need his book, now!) 2.5/5 stars (rounded up) steam: closed door Thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca, Annika Sharma, and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion ❤️

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rohina

    DNF @ 45% I guess I am the first one to DNF this book. Oh, well... The main reason why I requested this book was, the female lead was an Indian immigrant. Not an NRI but an immigrant. She was born and brought up in India and I was excited to read from her point of view. Initially, it started well. Kiran and her Chai Masala Club, fondly called CMC, was fun. Four Indians with different backgrounds and personalities were brought together by their love for chai and their roots. Having only read till 45 DNF @ 45% I guess I am the first one to DNF this book. Oh, well... The main reason why I requested this book was, the female lead was an Indian immigrant. Not an NRI but an immigrant. She was born and brought up in India and I was excited to read from her point of view. Initially, it started well. Kiran and her Chai Masala Club, fondly called CMC, was fun. Four Indians with different backgrounds and personalities were brought together by their love for chai and their roots. Having only read till 45%, I still had quite a few elements which led to me DNF'ing the book. I've highlighted them in point form for easy access: #1: Parental Influence — Born and raised in India, parents have tons of influence on their kid's life. It doesn't matter that you are from the city and "educated" or the village, your parents have a lot of opinions about every aspect of your life. Kiran and her parents were from a small village, but as I mentioned, it doesn't matter if you are from the city or the village, Indian parents have a certain mindset and it is practically impossible to change it, especially if their child is like Kiran. After Kiran's parents were "betrayed" by their eldest daughter (for very typical Indian parent mindset things) they've become over-protective, over-cautious and controlling of Kiran and the way she lives her life. Kiran, while she has lived in the US for over a decade, is still influenced by her parents and their needs and thoughts. Pretty normal for an Indian immigrant kid, however, this has turned out to become Kiran's personality. It has come to a point where she refuses to even toe the line. Her thoughts, the way she acts towards certain people, every little move is consciously or unconsiously influenced by her parents' personality, actions and reactions. Emotional blackmail is a pretty common tactic that parents apply to get their kids to do what they want and Kiran's parents do the same. What I would have loved to see was the author move away from this trope. She could have had Kiran and her parents communicate. I know, I know Indians and communication don't exactly go hand in hand, but I would have loved to see her parents be more accepting, hell even try to understand her and the times. I would have loved to see Kiran be freer and a relaxed person. #2: American's and their obsession with the most banal food — Okay, but seriously, what is it with American's and their obsession with mac n cheese? You have this character coming from a country that is so rich in its food, spices and flavour and all she got excited about was Mac n Cheese? Mac n cheese is single-handledly one of the blandest food I've ever tasted. It wasn't even something sweet or savoury, but something so utterly bland. #3: A somewhat desensitized female lead — I've lived in India for 26 years (born and raised) and yet I get awed by the sights, and here you have an Indian move from their home all the way to the US and you're telling me they were already done with the sights? Granted it's been 10 years, but still? #3: Narrative & Pacing — It felt like every single thing was being hashed out and discussed. Every dialogue exchange was philosophical and heavy which made the pacing of the story too slow, and made it boring as well. It was a drag to even read till 45%. More often than not, I would shut this book to pick up another one. #4: Oblivious Male Lead — We are in the 21st century and our characters are in their mid-20s and our male lead, Nathan was completely oblivious about the Indian culture. More often than not Kiran was explaining every little thing about the culture. I mean there is this is one exchange where Kiran is telling him about peacocks and the first thing Nathan asks her "How do you know so much peacocks?" (¬_¬) What's more ironic is that, for someone interested in a person from a culture that was so different, Nathan really didn't make an effort to learn about the culture. I mean, he could always Google and find out some of the basic stuff. I didn't read past the 45% mark not because I wouldn't, but because I couldn't. I think it says a lot when a reader is continuously putting aside a book for another one or falling asleep. So far, I did not enjoy the book as I had hoped and I don't have the will to finish it. I know a lot of people enjoyed the overall story and I know there will be a lot more. Unfortunately, I was not one of those people. As is always the case, there will be no rating for the book since I did not finish it. _________________________ For more reviews and recommendations: ☛ Facebook Page ☛ Main Blog ☛ Twitter ☛ BookBub * ARC approved by the published via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. *

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ashton Reads

    DNF at 33%. I was so ready to love this, but I’m not believing the chemistry and it’s too instalove to keep me interested. 😔

  6. 5 out of 5

    TheEuphoricZat

    Thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for making this book available to me via #Netgalley. This book highlights the conflicts between love, family and culture. We follow Kiran who is the definition of a good sister. Since her older sister married a man from a lower caste back in Indian, she has been forced to live up to a standard that would ensure that she is not disowned by the family. (I honestly believe the Caste system is horrible and should not exist in today's society). She is currently living Thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for making this book available to me via #Netgalley. This book highlights the conflicts between love, family and culture. We follow Kiran who is the definition of a good sister. Since her older sister married a man from a lower caste back in Indian, she has been forced to live up to a standard that would ensure that she is not disowned by the family. (I honestly believe the Caste system is horrible and should not exist in today's society). She is currently living in NYC and as she creeps closer to thirty, she is beginning to realise that a lot of the things she had on her life list has not been crossed out. Not that she necessarily tried to cross them off her list. That is until she meets Nash who is everything she wants but she is sure that her family would never accept him (because he is white). Anyways they form a quick bond, they start going on dates, exploring NYC, going horseback riding e.t.c. Nash who is a psychologist has always felt that abandonment was a pattern in his life that he could not break. But with Kiran, he is willing to try anything and everything. I really enjoy the way race and cultural differences were discussed. It is rare to see conversations like this arise in multi-racial relationships in books. Whilst Nash was not necessarily a racist or more basically, an ass, he has just used to the privilege that his race affords him. He was willing to learn and implement things into his life and even language. I loved it. I generally like a few steamy times in my romance but the absence of it in this book makes it all the more amazing!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mahathi

    Thanks to @netgalley and @sourcebookscasa for allowing me to read the preprint of this book. Written by a fellow Desi Annika Sharma, it is a 'forbidden' love story between a white American Nash Hawthorne with a traumatic, parentless childhood, and a 'village Indian' Kiran Mathur with a conservative upbringing and two parents who expect her to follow all rules of the land. There's not much to the premise of the story, it's just another will-they-or-wont-they romcom. It's not what attracts you to Thanks to @netgalley and @sourcebookscasa for allowing me to read the preprint of this book. Written by a fellow Desi Annika Sharma, it is a 'forbidden' love story between a white American Nash Hawthorne with a traumatic, parentless childhood, and a 'village Indian' Kiran Mathur with a conservative upbringing and two parents who expect her to follow all rules of the land. There's not much to the premise of the story, it's just another will-they-or-wont-they romcom. It's not what attracts you to read this book. It's going to be the unusual pairing and the navigation of an inter-racial relationship that would make you want to read. What seems like a regular lighthearted read will take you slightly deeper. For a non- Indian, it will certainly be a good way to learn both the good and bad of Indian culture. For a Desi however, it hits the troublesome spots. Touching issues that might hit very close to home. I don't want to give away too many spoilers, but the premise might itself give it away. For an Indian, to marry out of love, can be a huge deal. There are many variables to consider, from caste to money and everything else. And for a lot of Indian women, not following the rules laid down by conservative parents could mean being disowned. And this book... it somehow manages to both question and glorify it. And this has put me in a very controversial state of mind. How much do we owe our parents because they raised us well? Is it okay to do everything they want because of the sacrifices they made? Is it okay to give up on our freedom? Is it our responsibility to keep them happy? Or do we chase what we want and live how we wish, and choose love over our parents if the need comes? What's the line between strict and abusive parents? How can we educate them to be better parents? Is it even possible? Kiran's parents are narcissistic, controlling and I'm sorry, in my opinion, villains. Yet time and again, her friends support her parents with the excuse of 'They don't know any better' and ask her to give up everything for her parents. This angered me. And not to forget the casual casteism being thrown into my face with 'You're raised a Mathur, a Brahmin warrior' sentiments. That was so unnecessary. So yes, I don't know how I feel about this one. As a romcom, it's fine. As a mainstream Desi book, it's problematic. Weird though, the book has great reviews and it seems that a lot of Desis loved it. So mine is more a controversial take than anything else I suppose.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Liber_Lady

    ARC generously provided by Netgalley 3.5 Stars Love, Chai and Other Four-Letter Words is more of Kiran's journey to finding love, reuniting her family and finally find happiness than an interracial romance. I would call it predominantly a women's fiction with some romantic elements in it. Kiran: An Indian woman who was born and brought up in a village of India. She came to the US during her bachelor's and has been in the country for about ten years. She loves living in NYC however her heart is Indi ARC generously provided by Netgalley 3.5 Stars Love, Chai and Other Four-Letter Words is more of Kiran's journey to finding love, reuniting her family and finally find happiness than an interracial romance. I would call it predominantly a women's fiction with some romantic elements in it. Kiran: An Indian woman who was born and brought up in a village of India. She came to the US during her bachelor's and has been in the country for about ten years. She loves living in NYC however her heart is Indian. Her friends are all Indian (which totally makes sense for an Indian immigrant like me). The story revolves around her falling in love, the tensions in her family caused because of "LOVE", and how it all resolves itself Nash was an interesting enough male character. I don't have much opinion on him. Good love interest. Pros: - Good writing - Great friendships (Kiran and her 3 best friends) - Good representation of an Indian immigrant - Adorable moments between Kiran and Nash. Their connection felt real and heartfelt. - The grand gesture at the end was adorable Cons; - CLOSED DOOR romance (you only see the hero and heroine kiss) - The entire reasoning behind Kiran's parents drama and thoughts and actions had me furious. The representation of the reasoning and that culture might be true but it is a little uncommon. Yes, parents obviously hate it when the children fall in love and marry for love. But their extreme reactions, their words, their logic behind their daughters to NOT marry for love were too Hindi serial type. - Way toooo much description on NYC. As a person living in NYC, it got boring for me. Some might enjoy it. But a lot more romantic moments could have fit in the pages that went on and on about the NYC place, the food, the smell, the color, the history of the place. As an Indian immigrant myself, of course, my experience is different than the one in the book. But I did connect with the characters and the representation. I found the romance and steam lacking but well that's to be expected from an extreme closed door book. If u go in thinking about it as women's fictiony, you will be fine. PS: I hated the chai recipe of the heroine. Lol. I DO NOT make my chai like that. And I got mad reading that part. But well, again, every chai recipe is personal. And mine would definitely taste better and is much simple :P

  9. 5 out of 5

    Emma Reid

    This is an immersive story that left me craving chocolates and chai. Classifying this book into a genre is a bit more complex, as it's certainly romantically inclined but most of it is left up to our imaginations. I'd classify it as women's fiction personally, as we watch Kiran grow into her career and identity. That's not to say that Nash wasn't compelling (and incredibly attractive), but the focus was definitely on Kiran's journey. I'm interested to see how the Chai Masala Club continues, perh This is an immersive story that left me craving chocolates and chai. Classifying this book into a genre is a bit more complex, as it's certainly romantically inclined but most of it is left up to our imaginations. I'd classify it as women's fiction personally, as we watch Kiran grow into her career and identity. That's not to say that Nash wasn't compelling (and incredibly attractive), but the focus was definitely on Kiran's journey. I'm interested to see how the Chai Masala Club continues, perhaps with Payal!? *Thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review*

  10. 5 out of 5

    LA (that.bookmom)

    This book was soooo cute!! I can't wait to read more from this author and series. I thought Nash and Kiran were perfect together. I loved the slow burn romance that happened, and the wonderful friendship that bloomed along the way. Speaking of friendships, Kiran had the best friends and I loved all their chai dates together (maybe they get their own stories in fire books? 💜). I didn't like the family drama with Kiran's parents, but I understood why it was part of the story and I enjoyed learning This book was soooo cute!! I can't wait to read more from this author and series. I thought Nash and Kiran were perfect together. I loved the slow burn romance that happened, and the wonderful friendship that bloomed along the way. Speaking of friendships, Kiran had the best friends and I loved all their chai dates together (maybe they get their own stories in fire books? 💜). I didn't like the family drama with Kiran's parents, but I understood why it was part of the story and I enjoyed learning more about a different culture. Overall, this was a really cute story! Thank you so much @netgalley and @dreamacapemedia for this audiobook ARC in exchange for an honest review! I loved it and definitely recommend it. This book came out September 21st and the audiobook will be released October 19th 🥳

  11. 5 out of 5

    Carolina

    First of all, I would like to say that I won't be criticizing any cultural aspects of this book, since it's not my place to do so. If you would like to see reviews from people this book is set to represent, there are plenty to read here on Goodreads. Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words is about Kiran, who was born in India and moved to the US to pursue a higher education after her parents sacrificed a lot to get her where she is. This book is targeted as "strong friendships and families" but First of all, I would like to say that I won't be criticizing any cultural aspects of this book, since it's not my place to do so. If you would like to see reviews from people this book is set to represent, there are plenty to read here on Goodreads. Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words is about Kiran, who was born in India and moved to the US to pursue a higher education after her parents sacrificed a lot to get her where she is. This book is targeted as "strong friendships and families" but I honestly didn't see a lot of that. Moving to a total different country can be pretty scary, specially if you're doing it alone, so I was glad Kiran had the CMC to help her navigate life outside her comfort zone and everything she ever knew. It was nice to see they came from the same culture but had totally different backgrounds and somehow complemented each other. On the other hand, I was appalled and outraged by the way Kiran's parents treated her after they found out she fell in love with an American white boy. I wish we had seen a more understanding, with good communication on both parts, approach to this whole situation. Again, I know nothing about this culture-wise, but I can bet that on today's society not every parent will react that way, no matter where they come from. As much as I actually enjoyed Nash as a character from his background perspective, I found him to be hugely ignorant about most things. What bugged me the most was the fact that he was pretty much clueless about other cultures and didn't even make an effort throughout the book to get to know at least Kiran's a little better. You can't be expected to know everything right away, but he just expected her to teach him everything and got defensive when she was trying to educate him on the matter. I also didn't feel like they fit as a couple. They had trouble communicating and seemed to argue most of the time, with things getting quickly out of hand, and then everything seemed to be forgotten because they told each other how in love they were. Not to mention how he was a little possessive over her in the last few chapters. And can we please come up with new grand romantic gestures? I'm tired of the I-flew-to-another-country-for-you-because-we're-meant-to-be trope. I really liked Kiran. She was smart and funny. Sometimes it's not easy to deal with the expectations your family has for you, so I was pleased we got to see her navigate what that meant for her and the people around her. I just wish some things would have been handled differently in the grand scheme of things. Since this seems to be a series, I'm curious to see how it goes from here and read the books about the other CMC. I received an e-Arc in exchange for an honest review. Thank you Sourcebooks Casablanca and Netgalley!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kerry - Readkerryread

    I am a little conflicted on this one. I loved the different representation and learning more about a culture different from my own. I struggled with the connection between Kiran and her parents. The expectations, the vile things they said to her and yet she still felt obligation to them. I appreciated some of the conversations between Kiran and Nash regarding disparaging comments about her name. With Kiran and Nash I really enjoyed their connection and the trips they took to cross off items on h I am a little conflicted on this one. I loved the different representation and learning more about a culture different from my own. I struggled with the connection between Kiran and her parents. The expectations, the vile things they said to her and yet she still felt obligation to them. I appreciated some of the conversations between Kiran and Nash regarding disparaging comments about her name. With Kiran and Nash I really enjoyed their connection and the trips they took to cross off items on her bucket list. There was a push and pull due to Kiran feeling like she needed to have her parents arrange a marriage for him with someone they chose after they have already disowned her older sister for choosing a love connection with someone of a lower class. I liked to see that towards the end they made some strides to bring the family back together and Nash made a grand gesture to show Kiran how much he cared about her. The romance itself was pretty fade to black - closed door romance, but it was sweet. The cultural representation was big, and I really loved the friendships between Kiran and her three friends who played a big part in the story and I would loved to see them get their stories. Having grown up in America it was hard for me to relate to the parental connection and obligations. However, I am sure others will have a stronger connection with the story. I received a copy for review via NetGalley all opinions are my own and given freely.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    DNF at 34%. Please read reviews by Desi reviewers, there are plenty of good ones critiquing their culture as it was represented in this book, and it’s not my lane, so I’m not going to touch it. However, I had a few issues that made me slow down, and after reading other reviews, stop the book. 1. This takes place post pandemic, with clear references to the pandemic. Since it’s getting worse, not better, it’s jarring to read a world where it’s over. 2. The main character loves Harry Potter, and I get DNF at 34%. Please read reviews by Desi reviewers, there are plenty of good ones critiquing their culture as it was represented in this book, and it’s not my lane, so I’m not going to touch it. However, I had a few issues that made me slow down, and after reading other reviews, stop the book. 1. This takes place post pandemic, with clear references to the pandemic. Since it’s getting worse, not better, it’s jarring to read a world where it’s over. 2. The main character loves Harry Potter, and I get it. We millennials grew up on it, but to glorify it in public when JK Rowling has betrayed so many fans with her stance on trans people, as well as other topics, it’s super inappropriate to give it any more air time in 2021. Same with the Gandhi reference, he wasn’t a good person, this is known. 3. I knew this was going to be closed door going in, which I was okay with, but I just didn’t care about our main characters relationship. It was sweet but without a ton a depth. According to several reviews, this is more women’s fiction than romance anyway. Overall, there are too many books to read, and I love to read books about non-white characters by non-white authors, but not this exact one.

  14. 4 out of 5

    nihaarika

    I was not expecting to enjoy this as much as I did, but this was such a fun read. I loved seeing all the desi elements, especially the hindi words and there were some settings and places that felt so familiar to me, which was a nice feeling to have as I read this. The ending was pretty satisfying and neatly wrapped any plot threads that were woven throughout the story. Kiran was such a wonderfully adorable and funny character and I couldn't help, but love her. The same with Nash; he was a really I was not expecting to enjoy this as much as I did, but this was such a fun read. I loved seeing all the desi elements, especially the hindi words and there were some settings and places that felt so familiar to me, which was a nice feeling to have as I read this. The ending was pretty satisfying and neatly wrapped any plot threads that were woven throughout the story. Kiran was such a wonderfully adorable and funny character and I couldn't help, but love her. The same with Nash; he was a really nice guy and his dynamic with Kiran, especially when they were friends were so hilarious. My only qualms with this was that there were someone places where the dialogue felt a little disjointed and the description felt a little odd, but I wasn't affected too much by it. Overall, I unexpectedly ended up enjoying this! Thanks to Netgalley and Sourcebooks Casablance for the e-ARC!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    Kiran and Nash didn't have any chemistry overall just meh read. Kiran and Nash didn't have any chemistry overall just meh read.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Christina

    If you want to feel all the emotions then please read this book. I listened to the audio version and I went from happy to sad to angry to happy again multiple times in this book. I enjoyed it so much that even though I have the audio and ebook copy thanks to netgalley I am still going to buy the physical copy of it because it was just that great. I also can’t wait to read more by this author and I also can’t wait to listen to this narrator again. Run don’t walk to get this book :)

  17. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Kiran Mathur has traveled from India to the US for college and a successful job and be the dutiful daughter. She does everything she is told but when a new neighbor gets locked out and looks as lost as she felt she invites him in. And so starts a whirlwind courtship that can never be or can it.  She has a bucket list that she is tasked by her friends to finish and Nash her neighbor, starts ticking them off with her. Nash a transplant from a different state with his own list. I find it sad that Nas Kiran Mathur has traveled from India to the US for college and a successful job and be the dutiful daughter. She does everything she is told but when a new neighbor gets locked out and looks as lost as she felt she invites him in. And so starts a whirlwind courtship that can never be or can it.  She has a bucket list that she is tasked by her friends to finish and Nash her neighbor, starts ticking them off with her. Nash a transplant from a different state with his own list. I find it sad that Nash had never tasted Indian food before he met Kiran. Omg we love Indian food! I think I drooled all over when they listed what she brought to their date for him to try. Can I just have paneer in everything?  I am a cheese all day person. I will eat it any way it is served, give it to me! We have food trucks that park in front of our building every Friday and the Samosa truck is so good! #california This was a friends to lovers, closed room, delightful bucket list romance mixed in with some heavy familial struggles and oppositions. Definitely enjoyed this one! I want to visit NY again!! Thank you sourcebookscasa netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Rachel | What’s Rachel Reading

    I enjoyed Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words. I loved the relationship Kiran had with her friends and I loved reading about Kiran's culture. The relationship between Kiran and Nash progressed nicely as Kiran explored her feelings and the difficulties that would follow. This multicultural, slow-burn, closed-door romance was a sweet read. I enjoyed Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words. I loved the relationship Kiran had with her friends and I loved reading about Kiran's culture. The relationship between Kiran and Nash progressed nicely as Kiran explored her feelings and the difficulties that would follow. This multicultural, slow-burn, closed-door romance was a sweet read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Hadassah S

    •Arc provided by the publisher in exchange for a review- however all thoughts and opinions are my own!• I'm rather conflicted about this review friends-I wholeheartedly wanted to give Love, Chai and Other Four Letter words a better rating, but it was riddled with so many stereotypes, I in good conscience couldn't😭 My brown girl heart was so incredibly happy to receive a book written by a woman of colour , featuring a large cast of Indian rep within - but I had a little bit of a hard time with this •Arc provided by the publisher in exchange for a review- however all thoughts and opinions are my own!• I'm rather conflicted about this review friends-I wholeheartedly wanted to give Love, Chai and Other Four Letter words a better rating, but it was riddled with so many stereotypes, I in good conscience couldn't😭 My brown girl heart was so incredibly happy to receive a book written by a woman of colour , featuring a large cast of Indian rep within - but I had a little bit of a hard time with this one friends The story had such an interesting premise and for the most part was a really lovely read, I just found it difficult that the author used so many common Indian stereotypes all in one book. With that being said it was however, in every way such a breath of fresh air! I've never read a book with so much South Asian representation😭❤️ I think that the author tells a very important story about Indian immigrants and there are times were she gets the struggle of being a brown perfectly right. It is always such a delight reading books written by woman of colour that features a South Asian main character!! Nash Hawthorne was such a sweet love interest and there were such swoon worthy rom com moments in this book. Regarding the main conflict of the book I know for certain that are many Indian parents like Kiran's but I also know that many Indian parents have moved away (thankfully so) from the horrific mindset portrayed in the book. So much of the book read as a love letter to India and New York and I loved how atmospheric the it felt. I am very curious to see how the rest of the series is written as they will all have poc protagonists! Thank you to sourcebooks for the ARC!

  20. 5 out of 5

    MYMY

    You know when a book makes you slow down and digest it’s entirety because how thought provoking it is? This book is exactly that. Cultural aspects divulged/ exploring lists, straying off the beaten path of familial expectations and just living your OWN life; doing what makes you happy. Love, Chai, and other four letter words… like food! Lol because there was a lot of food. I enjoyed the relationship between the 4 friends of the Chai Masala Club (CMC). This book followed a love story about an int You know when a book makes you slow down and digest it’s entirety because how thought provoking it is? This book is exactly that. Cultural aspects divulged/ exploring lists, straying off the beaten path of familial expectations and just living your OWN life; doing what makes you happy. Love, Chai, and other four letter words… like food! Lol because there was a lot of food. I enjoyed the relationship between the 4 friends of the Chai Masala Club (CMC). This book followed a love story about an interracial relationship characterized by a South Asian woman born in India, Kiran and a small town white American man, Nash. You know, I can see what the author was trying to do but I just didn’t buy it. Their relationship felt off kilter to me, a bit forced… idk. The way they went about their love interests with each other bothered me so much! Like get on with it already. Then it was a whole thing about her parents not accepting him because of who he was, yet she decided to pursue a relationship anyway. She strung him along in my book. It was just a lot of back and forth. Let’s just say my eyeballs were sore for all eye rolling that was going on while reading this book. What I did find very interesting was the many life lessons; motivational texts throughout the read. One that really stuck out to me: “It was frustrating how many arbitrary guidelines there were for women. Women were supposed to be smart, strong, independent, forward, brave, fearless, and unique. But they weren’t supposed to shine too bright, be too bold, too sharp. They were supposed to fit in, have friends, make people think they were sexually invigorated but not actually be sexy for themselves, and respect everyone so they would appear soft and feminine.” Kiran, Payal, Sonoma, and Kirti all embodied their power as strong-minded ambitious women. THIS. The author wrote their characters very well. I am actually wondering how the other members of the CMC will develop in the series. I wouldn’t mind following them in the books to come.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Nicole (Taylor's Version)

    "Isn't that the only way to live? To find beauty in all moments?" Hmm, I admit, I'm a little conflicted on where my rating falls and how I enjoyed this book in general. There were things I really really enjoyed and also things I really really didn't. I found the beginning part of the book so easy to read and so fun and so I was very excited for the rest of the book and felt a little let down. I LOVE the Chai Masala Club, I love the concept that the female main character had all these really gr "Isn't that the only way to live? To find beauty in all moments?" Hmm, I admit, I'm a little conflicted on where my rating falls and how I enjoyed this book in general. There were things I really really enjoyed and also things I really really didn't. I found the beginning part of the book so easy to read and so fun and so I was very excited for the rest of the book and felt a little let down. I LOVE the Chai Masala Club, I love the concept that the female main character had all these really great friends that support her and surround her. I really loved that there was cultural representations and that there seemed to be a lot of focus on that. I really really loved Kiran as a character and I think she had so much depth to her. I love her backstory and how this book is as much about her growth as it is about her falling in love. Similarly, I really like Nash as a character, I enjoyed his depth and his growth. I think one of my problems is I wasn't totally sold on their relationship and chemistry. Their relationship seemed good and fun but I wasn't overwhelmed with excitement for them and I wasn't necessarily cheering them on. Spoilers below! (view spoiler)[ I found myself also frustrated with Nash and Kiran's relationship because it seemed like Kiran knew that she was going to end up having to break up with Nash at some point yet she decided to jump in and all of her friends told her to take that jump. Then those friends told her that she needed to break up with him??? And then she wasn't even honest with him about all the reasons that she believed the break up was necessary! I understood all of the complicated reasons that their relationship was difficult but it made me feel sorry for Nash and seemed like he had been led on. On the other hand, I also am dying for a bigger romantic gesture than "I flew to another country for you" like okay. I can get on a plane too. (hide spoiler)] Random little things I enjoyed: -The description of New York was really fun and I enjoyed being able to picture everything -At the beginning when they talk about everyone coming out of quarantine, I thought that was a nice little contemporary touch You'll enjoy at least parts of this if you enjoy: -Strangers to friends to lovers -Will they won't they -Strong friendships -Closed door/fade to black romance 3.5 stars! Looking forward to hopefully getting more stories from the CMC!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Raafat

    I guess you know by now that I pick books because of their covers, but in this case, I also picked it because I saw it a lot on bookstagram. This is my first multicultural interest ( I think ) and I had no idea what to expect but it was certainly not this amazingness. This book totally took me off-guard, I couldn't put it down once I started it. I loved every single thing about it,  especially that it made me laugh out loud and in public, that's a huge bonus point. Also, as someone who loves lear I guess you know by now that I pick books because of their covers, but in this case, I also picked it because I saw it a lot on bookstagram. This is my first multicultural interest ( I think ) and I had no idea what to expect but it was certainly not this amazingness. This book totally took me off-guard, I couldn't put it down once I started it. I loved every single thing about it,  especially that it made me laugh out loud and in public, that's a huge bonus point. Also, as someone who loves learning about new cultures, I totally enjoyed learning more about India, the customs and traditions, the food and the few Indian words in there, I had so much fun reading them and trying to understand them through context. I think I can safely say that this book has made it to my three-books-long list of comfort reads. I strongly recommend this to everyone. This was my first book by the author and it certainly won't be the last. Thank you @netgalley & @sourcebookscasa for this ARC in exchange for an honest review💕

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ancillar

    A huge thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for my e-aRC in exchange for an honest review. The book features four South Asian friends living in New York City who call themselves the ‘Chai Masala Club,’ on their individual journeys to find love and tick off items on their things to do before 30. The book however mostly follows Kiran a first-generation immigrant from India living in New York City. Her life is shaken up when she gets a new neighbour (Nash) in the apartment next door, and they start to A huge thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca for my e-aRC in exchange for an honest review. The book features four South Asian friends living in New York City who call themselves the ‘Chai Masala Club,’ on their individual journeys to find love and tick off items on their things to do before 30. The book however mostly follows Kiran a first-generation immigrant from India living in New York City. Her life is shaken up when she gets a new neighbour (Nash) in the apartment next door, and they start to form a friendship that turns into something more. We follow them as they go on dates but Kiran does all he can to not fall in love with him because he is white. I loved how the book touched on culture and love. Actual rating : 3.5 .

  24. 5 out of 5

    Risa

    An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley (audiobook) and Edelweiss+ (ebook) in exchange for an honest review. 4.25 stars I really enjoyed this book. I’ve been reading a mix of thrillers, mysteries, and a couple other things lately, and I wanted a change. This one had a lot of the typical light and fluffy romance elements, but it also had a more serious plot line, reasonably well-developed characters, and some interesting relationships. I liked the writing style and was root An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley (audiobook) and Edelweiss+ (ebook) in exchange for an honest review. 4.25 stars I really enjoyed this book. I’ve been reading a mix of thrillers, mysteries, and a couple other things lately, and I wanted a change. This one had a lot of the typical light and fluffy romance elements, but it also had a more serious plot line, reasonably well-developed characters, and some interesting relationships. I liked the writing style and was rooting for the protagonists to work out their issues and rekindle their relationship. I’ll definitely keep an eye out for the rest of the series as it’s published.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Z

    Plus points for these: ✨ Indian culture and representation are vouched by ownvoices reviewers here on Goodreads. ✨ I love that the female MC is born and raised in India and then migrated to the US. I love seeing characters that are first-generation immigrants. ✨ Kiran’s and Nash’s relationship with their families is a big part of them (both the positive and negative impact) so I’m glad to see that they made strides to end on good terms with them. Overall thoughts: The romance was just okay? They did Plus points for these: ✨ Indian culture and representation are vouched by ownvoices reviewers here on Goodreads. ✨ I love that the female MC is born and raised in India and then migrated to the US. I love seeing characters that are first-generation immigrants. ✨ Kiran’s and Nash’s relationship with their families is a big part of them (both the positive and negative impact) so I’m glad to see that they made strides to end on good terms with them. Overall thoughts: The romance was just okay? They did have chemistry but I guess I wasn’t completely sold? To be honest I came for the romance but it wasn’t the reason I continued reading. My fave part is probably the friend group. I would LOVE to know more about them more so I’ll probably be on the lookout for the next books. Maybe it’s worth mentioning lol: this is published in 2021, they could have edited out the Harry Potter mentions/references.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Alex Hutchinson

    I have been cruising through some rom-coms lately, which is not like me. But I’m not hating it. Predictable plot with this one, but I really loved the two main characters Nash and Kiran.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Alex Curtis

    A huge thank you to NetGalley, Sourcebooks Casablanca and Dreamscape Audio for my advanced copy of Love, Chai, and Other Four Letter Words! I cannot believe this is Annika Sharma's debut adult title, because it was utterly charming and so well-written. Full of emotion, depth and family, this romance built on friendship. Kiran left her village in India for a life in New York City. But her family expectations followed her. If she doesn't marry an Indian man from the right caste, she'll disgrace her A huge thank you to NetGalley, Sourcebooks Casablanca and Dreamscape Audio for my advanced copy of Love, Chai, and Other Four Letter Words! I cannot believe this is Annika Sharma's debut adult title, because it was utterly charming and so well-written. Full of emotion, depth and family, this romance built on friendship. Kiran left her village in India for a life in New York City. But her family expectations followed her. If she doesn't marry an Indian man from the right caste, she'll disgrace her parents. Just like her sister did. I love reading books with diversity and I loved getting a glimpse into Indian culture. Love, Chai, and Other Four Letter Words also features an interracial relationship and the obstacles they face.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Shay | Books Are Magic Too

    "You find beauty in the small things," Nash said, and the tenderness in his eyes was unmistakable. Isn't that the only way to live? To find beauty in all moments?" Kiran asked. And she couldn't help but find wonder in this one. . . . I cannot believe this is Annika Sharma's debut adult title, because it was utterly charming and so well-written. Full of emotion, depth and family, this romance built on friendship and the desire to not only grow as people, but to finish their "lists" spoke right to m "You find beauty in the small things," Nash said, and the tenderness in his eyes was unmistakable. Isn't that the only way to live? To find beauty in all moments?" Kiran asked. And she couldn't help but find wonder in this one. . . . I cannot believe this is Annika Sharma's debut adult title, because it was utterly charming and so well-written. Full of emotion, depth and family, this romance built on friendship and the desire to not only grow as people, but to finish their "lists" spoke right to my heart. From the endearing friendships Kiran has with her friends that have become her family in America, the Chai Masala Club, (that I absolutely cannot WAIT to see more of in the rest of the series!) to her foodie adventures all over New York City, I adored who Kiran was as our main character. Her traditional upbringing, the hardships she has endured as an Indian coming to live in America, the estrangement of her sister were all woven together with this interracial romance that I really enjoyed. While it had the "strict parent trope" it doesn't just stop there, it delves deep into what family obligations can mean to different people and how to grow within those expectations. While I cannot claim to know how realistic this family dynamic is, I was absolutely immersed in the way Sharma created each of these characters, their similarities and differences and how they're seen by one another and who they are as people. Nash may have been a white male without much knowledge of her culture, but coming from a difficult childhood of his own, I loved that our couple had such depth individually, that make their finding love so much more beautiful. I adored that we got to know him on an equally emotional level with the dual POV, and how his job and upbringing were such a part of him, his growth as a half of this couple and for his willingness to learn from Kiran, and show up for her in a grand way to prove his love. I adored "traveling" the pages with the couple as they got to know one another, through the vivid descriptions of places and food, the intimacy created from falling in love with someone and now am dying to try so many of the foods shared in these pages! Thank you to Sourcebooks Casablance + NetGalley for the ARC, I am absolutely thrilled @literallybookedsolid brought us to the loveARCtually crew as a special club opportunity. Looking forward to chatting about the book with Annika later this month!

  29. 4 out of 5

    smalltownbookmom

    A heartwarming interracial, dual perspective, closed door romance between Nash, a white American man and Kiran, a South Asian woman born in India but living in New York City. Kiran and her three college friends in the Chai Masala Club, are reminiscing about the list of things they wanted to do before they turn 30. At the top of Kiran's list is falling in love but what she never wanted to do was fall for someone her very traditional parents wouldn't approve of. What ensues is a lovely romance betw A heartwarming interracial, dual perspective, closed door romance between Nash, a white American man and Kiran, a South Asian woman born in India but living in New York City. Kiran and her three college friends in the Chai Masala Club, are reminiscing about the list of things they wanted to do before they turn 30. At the top of Kiran's list is falling in love but what she never wanted to do was fall for someone her very traditional parents wouldn't approve of. What ensues is a lovely romance between Kiran and Nash that gets derailed when Kiran's parents refuse to accept Nash as a viable partner for Kiran. I loved the authentic look South Asian culture and the cultural and familial pressure put on children to follow traditions. Kiran's sister was ostracized for choosing a man her parent's didn't approve of, which made Kiran's choice that much more difficult. Highly recommended for fans of Sajni Patel's First love, take two and great on audio. Much thanks to NetGalley for my advance review copies!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa (bookscallmyheart)

    Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words is a beautiful cross between women’s fiction and contemporary romance with a strong focus on a cross-cultural relationship and dealing with cultural and familial expectations. I had so much fun reading with @lovearctually friends and participating in the group author chat. Loved: -Kiran’s friend group, the Chai Masala Club (CMC) -Kiran and Nash’s easy-going friendship and banter -Bucket list and NYC sights storyline -Perfect balance between women’s fiction and Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words is a beautiful cross between women’s fiction and contemporary romance with a strong focus on a cross-cultural relationship and dealing with cultural and familial expectations. I had so much fun reading with @lovearctually friends and participating in the group author chat. Loved: -Kiran’s friend group, the Chai Masala Club (CMC) -Kiran and Nash’s easy-going friendship and banter -Bucket list and NYC sights storyline -Perfect balance between women’s fiction and romance -Easy read, but still tackles some difficult topics Steam: Closed door The author, Annika Sharma is the absolutely sweetest person. It was so fun to chat with her about her new book as well as some future projects she has in the works. Since there is a bucket list part to the story, Annika was asked about her own bucket list which includes visiting all 6 continents, go zip lining, and wearing a fancy gown to a formal event! Love, Chai, and Other Four-Letter Words is perfect for fans of cross-cultural relationships, NYC, and Ties That Tether! Out now! Thank you so much Sourcebooks Casablanca, Netgalley, and LoveARCtually for the gifted copy! All opinions are my own.

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