Sasha's Reviews > The Bride Test

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
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really liked it
bookshelves: netgalley

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a free ARC of this novel. Regardless of the way I acquired the novel, the thoughts, opinions, and views stated in this review are completely unbiased and one hundred percent my own.

I definitely missed the boat when it came to The Kiss Quotient. After reading The Bride Test, I think it’s safe to say I’ll be backtracking and adding that book to my TBR. Thankfully, it doesn’t seem like the books are connected in the traditional way that a series would be. I was able to pick right up with these characters, and this plot, and away we went!

I’m not sure how to approach this novel’s review, other than to say first and foremost that I think the fact that this novel exists and is part of the discussion is extremely important. The different cultures highlighted here were amazing, and the representation of someone on the autism spectrum was truly eye opening.

I struggled with my own ignorance when it came to specific cultural norms, or references throughout this novel. That didn’t stop me from enjoying the story or our characters, but showed me personally where I could benefit from learning more about people who differ from me. There was a point while reading where I thought I was going to call it a loss, because the novel touches on the idea of an arranged marriage. However, I thought the author ultimately handled these situations with integrity, intelligence, and grace.

I’m honestly admonishing myself for not reaching for a book like this time and time again. The last book I can recall that dealt with these themes was Flowers for Algernon: a book I was required to read in middle school. I genuinely loved having a look inside the relationship of a person who considers themselves to be autistic. It felt less like voyeurism and more like education. The questions I’d never feel comfortable asking were dealt with so efficiently, and it never felt like I was reading a novel solely about a guy with autism. I was reading a novel about a guy and a girl who were getting to know each other, and learning more about themselves. The guy just so happens to have autism, and the girl just so happens to be a poor immigrant who might not be able to stay in America.

The story itself felt powerful, charming, and even playful at times. I admired Esme’s story, her determination, and the fact that her story is the story of so many immigrants around the world. I hope people pick up this novel, and get a chance to see themselves in these characters. For once, I didn’t see myself in a novel, but as a white woman that’s okay! I’m ready to read about people who are not like me, I’m ready for Asian women to feel seen, and for autistic people to feel understood. I’m glad this book exists, and I hope authors like Helen keep writing for more than people like me.

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Reading Progress

February 8, 2019 – Shelved
February 8, 2019 – Shelved as: to-read
April 26, 2019 – Shelved as: netgalley
July 23, 2019 – Started Reading
July 23, 2019 – Finished Reading

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