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The Matchmaker's List

3.33  ·  Rating details ·  5,586 ratings  ·  910 reviews
One devoted modern girl + a meddlesome, traditional grandmother = a heartwarming multicultural romantic comedy about finding love where you least expect it

Raina Anand may have finally given in to family pressure and agreed to let her grandmother play matchmaker, but that doesn't mean she has to like it--or that she has to play by the rules. Nani always took Raina's sid
Paperback, 352 pages
Published February 5th 2019 by Berkley Books (first published January 22nd 2019)
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Average rating 3.33  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,586 ratings  ·  910 reviews

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Susanne  Strong
4 Stars.

Full of laughs, heartbreak and lots of little surprises.

Sometimes life is about finding your truth and about being brave enough to fight for it.

Raina is twenty-nine. Her Nani desperately wants to see her married before she turns thirty. Raina, however is not ready. After all, she isn’t dating anyone and her breakup with her last boyfriend, Dev, two years ago left her completely broken hearted. Her Nani and her best friend Shay seem to think that marriage will somehow make everything b
Kate Olson
Jan 27, 2019 rated it did not like it
SPOILERS BELOW but they are regarding problematic content and I believe they are important for deciding whether to invest your reading time.
Okay, I'm not going to waste time talking about the things I did like about the book. Because the problematic content so far overshadows that. It is NOT OKAY to have a woman pretend to be a lesbian to avoid her grandmother's pressure for her to find a husband. It is NOT OKAY to lie to everyone on earth and pretend to be gay to make life easier for
Five heartwarming 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
A positively sweet, romantic comedy that had me smiling with joy, (and yes crying!) from page one right to the very end!

At only 29, Raina is a successful business woman living in Toronto.
Raised in a traditional Indian home, and introduced to all the culture, beliefs and values that her beloved Nani shared with her since birth.
Only problem, (at least according to Nani.) Poor Raina is still single.

And so, in lieu of her upcoming milestone 30th birthday, Raina reluctantly
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
I told myself I was going to make myself finish this book tonight. I lost that battle.

This book had so much potential! It just ended up being soooo boring. The story was a almost 30 year old woman had promised her Nani that if she wasn't married by thirty that she would let her help her "find a mate"..and it could have worked. Nani's character sorta tried to bridge the gap of being a modern woman with her Indian heritage. Her- I tried to like. I just felt that enough time was not given to flesh
Nov 18, 2018 rated it liked it

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The Matchmaker’s List was a fantastic debut novel by Sonya Lalli. By the cover and the blurb, I was expecting this to be a cutesy and fun rom-com. While it was that, it was also much more angsty and emotional than I thought it would be.

Raina is almost thirty. Raina’s grandmother is from India and holds their traditions to heart. She wants Raina married and settled down, and it seems all Raina wants to do is work. After having her heart broken years ago, Raina just isn’t in the dating ga
This was an adorable romcom bursting with culture, family, friendship, fun, and love!

This was a charming feel-good story that put a big smile on my face! This book did a really good job of showcasing the expectations and pressure we as parents sometimes put on our children when it comes to love, marriage, and many other things... I think the pressure to be “perfect“ is greater in some cultures than others.... but I think almost all parents regardless of culture want the absolute best for their c
Katie B
I've looked forward to reading this for months so I guess my expectations were too high. My biggest problem with the story was I just didn't understand the main character. By the end of the book I just wished the story had revolved around her grandmother and mom instead.

Raina Anand has decided she will let her grandmother, Nani, find her a man. Living in an Indian-immigrant community there has to be at least one guy who Nani will approve of and will make Raina happy. Right?

I thought for sure t
Mackenzie - PhDiva Books
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
Heartwarming, funny, and fresh—Sonya Lalli’s novel The Matchmaker’s List is already a favorite in the romantic comedy category for me! I loved the story about a woman who is feeling pressured to get married as she nears the age of 30, and I loved the way Lalli wrote. She lets her characters be flawed and make mistakes, but the book is also clearly filled with love. And not just romantic love! Family love, friendships, and the love of a community in a time of change. I hope you enjoy this one!

Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Feb 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
A fun romance with endearing characters!

Raina Anand has modern values, but her family is more traditional, especially her grandmother. Raina is receiving pressure to get married and along with that to allow her grandmother, Nani, to be matchmaker.

Nani has big plans with a long list of potential suitors. Raina ends up on one ridiculous date after another, and she’s looking for a way out. Will she find it and her own happiness one day?

The best parts of the book were Nani’s antics. She is warm an
Suzanne Leopold (Suzy Approved Book Reviews)
Raina Anand lives in Toronto and was raised in a traditional Indian home by her grandmother, Nani. She is turning thirty and Nani is getting concerned that her granddaughter isn't married. Romance hasn't been on Raina’s agenda since she failed at her most recent long term relationship.
Nani is on a mission and provides Raina with lists of suitable single Indian men for a potential husband. Raina makes a light effort to make her grandmother happy but finds no suitor to her liking. They live in a t
This review is not an easy one to write.

On one hand I really enjoyed some aspects of this book, on the other hand I had some real issues with some of the characters and their choices. Raina, her grandmother, her mother – I could go on. I had real trouble connecting with any of the characters. And some of the choices these characters made drove me up the wall.

Going into this book I expected the story to be mainly about the matchmaking efforts and the dates, and it certainly was part of this book.
Pavlina Read more sleep less blog
<3 4 stars <3

Such a nice surprise, I devour it in one sitting.The plot was good and I loved the heroine.I like the writing, and I hope we can see more from this author.


I loved most of it, I just didn't liked the ending a lot and this is why I give it 4 stars.However, it was a great story.

The Matchmaker's List is sweet, intense and heartwarming.


Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020-reads
4 matchmaking stars!👰🏽

Such a light and easy read! It was super real - as an Indo-Canadian, I really understood the topics discussed throughout the book, and felt for the characters. It displayed the right amount of emotion, without making the book too overwhelming or over-the-top!

Raina lives with her Nani (maternal-grandma). Her mother had her when she was really young, so her parents aren’t really in the picture. Since Nani was quite disappointed in her daughter, she took the responsibility o
nick (the infinite limits of love)

Any time I hear about a brown romance author coming up with a new romance read, I am more than excited. As a brown woman, the feelings that I get seeing someone like myself being represented in a book with a happily ever after are just magical. I have been excited for The Matchmaker's List for precisely that reason since early last year. I wanted so much out of this book and ultimately, these expectations wound up being crushed.

A big part of why this book didn't click for me was my expectat
Geri Reads
Feb 16, 2019 rated it did not like it
I love reading books from diverse authors, and The Matchmaker's List seems to be the perfect book to me. An Indian girl dealing with the weight of her family's expectations & then found true love in the process. Sounds like a book for me.

Unfortunately, it became readily apparent early on that this book won't end up being a good read for me after all.

I adore prickly and unlikable heroines but Raina isn't unlikable as much as she's just a horrible human being. I'm sorry but her lies did me in. I
Jan 26, 2019 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa (Remarkablylisa)

I received an ARC from Penguin Random House Canada in exchange for a honest review and to take part in the blog tour. 

Firstly, I can't really begin by explaining how much I enjoyed this book. When I think back to when I first received this copy and immediately started reading it, getting captivated by the words, enthralled by the story and our characters--there's just so much to talk about.  

The Matchmaker's List tells the story of a modern girl, Raina, who is creeping clos
Leigh Kramer
Jan 30, 2019 marked it as not-reading-problematic-content
After reading excerpts, I have addressed the publisher and am declining to review my advance copy due to problematic content. A plot line around a character pretending to be lesbian so she doesn't have to deal with her family wanting her to get married, even as a gay teen is coming out to her, is offensive to the LGBTQ+ community. She also proceeded to out that teen to all of her family and friends when she finally fessed up. How no one at the publisher recognized how deeply problematic this is ...more
Lisa Wolf
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was ok
The Matchmaker's List had been on my to-read list for a while, and after a few heavier books, I thought this would make a nice, light change of pace. And yes, it did, but it was also frustrating and ultimately disappointing.

In The Matchmaker's List, Raina is 29 years old, a serious career woman -- an investment banker -- coming off a break-up with the love of her life. Dev is another investment banker, hard-driven in a way that Raina isn't, and always puts his career ahead of their relationship.
Feb 18, 2019 added it
Shelves: dnf
For a romance book, this wasn't very romantic. After 37% I just skimmed to see if it got any better.

(view spoiler)
::SPOILERS WARNING:: Just letting you know that halfway through this review, there's a big spoiler but I have to talk about it because it's the reason why I couldn't give it a full five stars.

I think when it comes to romance novels, you're expecting there to be two main characters. They're the love interests and you read throughout the novel as they volley back and forth before finally getting together. Even though this book is said to be a romance novel, I actually didn't see it that way. Yes,
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
*I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

*2.5 Stars!*

It may be too early to call, but I definitely feel like 2019 is gonna be the year for brown girl romances! I've been adding romance books written by brown women featuring brown heroines to my TBR left and right and it makes me so excited to read romance books about girls just like me. The Matchmaker's List was one of those books on my list and I had really high hopes for it. Too bad it did
Brooke — brooklynnnnereads
3.5 stars

This debut was a very cute and fluffy, yet serious, contemporary that was extremely relatable. As a single twenty-seven year old that can get a little too devoted to her job, I can say that I relate to the main character on an extreme level (minus the dramatics….maybe). Along with dealing with being surrounded by couples 24/7, friends also attempt to play matchmaker and pair off all of their single friends. Luckily enough, my family has not been involved in this matchmaking scheme but i
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you Penguin Random House Canada for awarding me a stop on the Blog Tour for The Matchmaker's List by Sonya Lalli. This title releases February 5.

This was such a cute read. A very different pace from my usual thriller suspense fiction grabs, but in the best way. This was a fun loving and enjoyable rom-com that has definitely swayed my interest further into this genre and the best part – it was truly Canadian made! The author, a Torontonian herself really left her mark with this romantic t
The Candid Cover (Olivia & Lori)
Full Review on The Candid Cover

The Matchmaker’s List is a rom-com that explores the struggles between maintaining cultural traditions and living in a society that doesn’t follow the same traditions. The characters in the book are quite interesting and fun to read about. Sonya Lalli has created a humorous story that will tug at your heartstrings at the same time.

I love books that feature grandparents and families. Nani is a classic busybody grandmother. She only wants what is best for her family
'The Matchmaker's List' is more than a romance about matchmaking. It is a story about family and tradition, and the responsibilities that come with those. It is about figuring out who you are and what you want to be while being okay with the fact that there will be people who don't agree with your life choices.
❝Gay. Straight. Indian. Not Indian.❞ She moves closer to him. ❝Not everyone is brave enough to be themselves.❞

'The Matchmaker's List' chronicles the life of Raina Anandas as she tries
book bruin
After seeing the cover and blurb for The Matchmaker's List, I was excited to get my hands on it. It sounded like a fun (oh, those meddling matchmaking grandmothers!) and diverse read. Though I enjoyed the multicultural aspect of the story a lot, and there are plenty of silly and hilarious moments, I wouldn't consider this one truly a romcom. It was much more poignant and polarizing than I anticipated.

Our heroine, Raina, was sadly one of the main reasons why I did not love this book. I can defini
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Berkley has been delivering all of the diverse romances and I have been all for it. When I saw that this was about an Indian woman who was being pressured to marry while still hung up on her ex, I was excited to get my hands on it!

Raina has just turned 29 and is feeling the pressure from her grandmother to find a man and get married. Raina agrees to try dating, which gives her grandmother the green light to set her up with every eligible Indian man she knows. Unfortunately for Raina, she's stil
Jessica  (Angie & Jessica's Dreamy Reads)
3.5 - 4 STARS

I was actually more enamored by Raina's journey through this story than I was by the romance. Don't get me wrong, the romance was exactly what I was hoping for... but Raina's struggle as a modern woman confined by cultural expectations and traditions was both fascinating and entertaining. While her decisions sometimes irritated me, and the repercussions those decisions had on her personal relationships often broke my heart, I really felt a kinship with this character and truly appre
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Sonya Lalli is a Canadian writer of Indian heritage. She studied law in her hometown of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and at Columbia University in New York City. She completed an MA in Creative Writing and Publishing at City University London in 2015, and currently works as a journalist at a legal magazine in London. She has a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and loves travel, yoga, piano, reading and cocktai ...more

Articles featuring this book

There's more to romance than "happily ever after." The genre is constantly changing to keep up with the times, and to keep you updated...
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“Not everyone is brave enough to be themselves.” 0 likes
“The way Nani showed she loved you through food—and then, through more food.” 0 likes
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