By LINCEE RAY, Associated Press
“The Proposal” (Berkley), by Jasmine Guillory
There are some women who dream of extravagant proposals full of heartfelt romance. Nikole Paterson isn’t one of them. In her sophomore novel, Jasmine Guillory uses a botched grand gesture to pair a Los Angeles doctor and a freelance writer in the most random of circumstances in “The Proposal.”
Nikole wasn’t ready to be engaged to her actor-boyfriend. She and Fisher had only been dating for six months when he dropped down on one knee at a baseball game in front of thousands and thousands of people to pop the question. She wasn’t surprised when he pitched a fit as she declined the ring. What she didn’t expect was backlash from countless Dodger fans on publicly breaking Fisher’s heart.
Another surprise? Carlos and his sister Angela who rescued her by pretending to be long-lost friends as her face covered the entire width of the jumbotron. Having been abandoned by Fisher and his friends at the game, Carlos and Angela both feel sorry for Nik and whisk her away to drown her sorrows at the local bar.
When the disastrous proposal goes viral, Carlos is once again drawn to the girl who is being bashed on the internet for no good reason. Being an extremely independent woman, Nik tenses at his protective vibe, but soon learns to relax in his presence. It doesn’t hurt that she has incredible chemistry with him. Who wouldn’t? He’s a nice, great-looking doctor who cooks in his spare time.
After a night of great food and wonderful conversation, their friendship transforms into more. Both agree that there are no strings attached, yet each secretly wants to see where things might take them.