“Arrange Me” was just released today, March 4th!
My name is Courtney Jane Salinger…
and I’m sick of games.
Sick of the Friday night bar-scene-cum-meat-market.
Sick of the boy-girl, man-woman, mars-venus, flirtation-without-expectation, game-playing nonsense.
Sick of awful dates and one-night stands, booty calls and guys who don’t call back, mixed messages or NO messages and—and—and…I’m sick of all of it.
I just can’t do it anymore.
It’s too hard, and worse: little by little, it’s making me hard.
It’s breaking my heart.
What do I want?
I want a house in suburbia with a white picket fence.
I want babies to buckle into a minivan.
But most of all, I want to be married.
I want a husband.
So I’ve made an important decision: I’m making my escape from the dating world and the single life.
I’ve filled out my application on ArrangeMe.com and I’m putting my fate into the hands of experts.
Is it a little scary?
I mean, I have no idea who I’ll end up with.
After all, I’m planning to marry a complete stranger.
But between you and me?
I can’t wait.
Being arranged can’t possibly be worse than being single.
Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
In the first book of “The Arranged Duo,” we get to meet Courtney Salinger and Josh Dalton. Josh is a bartender at the bar where Courtney and her friend Dina go every Friday after work. After knowing each other from seeing each other at the bar almost every Friday for the past year, sparks start to fly between the two. The only problem is that Josh can’t promise Courtney forever–she has already signed up online to be matched by experts from the hit Lifetime show “Arrange Me.” With the clock counting down until the day Courtney will find out her match, her and Josh’s days of toeing the line between friends and something more are numbered.
At first, I wasn’t too sure about accepting this book for review. Not because I didn’t like the premise, but because of the cover. I don’t typically pick up books that feature such a sexy cover, because to me that usually means that the book has more sex than plot in it, which is definitely not what I want. However, I decided to take a chance on this book, partly because the main character and I have the same name, and partly because I had read an ARC of one of Katy’s books under her pen name last year, and I could tell from her writing style that she typically writes adult books, not young adult books, so I wanted to give one a chance.
The book is told from two points of view, Courtney and Josh. When we first meet Josh, I noticed that there was a lot of detail used to describe him. I figured that he would be an important part of the story, but I wasn’t sure until I got to the first chapter written in his POV, since he’s not mentioned in the synopsis.
Courtney does something with finance–I think–and Josh is a struggling playwright who bartends to make money to support his playwriting. I’ve taken playwriting classes before and had two short shows produced at my high school (one when I was a junior, another when I was a senior). It’s not often that I see a main character who is a playwright, so I was excited to read about that. Courtney comes from money and has a good, high paying job, while Josh comes from little money and is living paycheck to paycheck in order to continue to live in New York to work on his plays.
Although I also think that Courtney was absolutely crazy for entrusting matchmaking “experts” with her love life, it was interesting to see her reasoning behind it. The reasoning makes sense, although I don’t think that is ever a path I’ll ever choose for myself.
Courtney and Josh made the cutest couple, even though the “dates” they went on were technically unofficial (and technically official), in part because Courtney was waiting to know who her arranged match was, and Josh wasn’t supposed to date customers at the bar he works at. Flirt, yes. Date, no. Even so, they’re absolutely adorable together, which was only amplified by that fact that we get to see their feelings grow from both of their points of view.
I don’t want to go too much into anything else without spoiling who Courtney ends up with, but the book is a duology, and I’m assuming that the second book will follow Courtney and her new husband, and the repercussions of her family finding out that she’s run off to get married after being matched online.
I’d recommend this book for readers 17+ because of sexual content.