“Amira stared at the man a moment before shaking her head with disbelief. “Look, I don’t need some mouth-breathing neck-beard who just emerged from the lumberyard to save me with grand gestures.”
If you love enemies to lovers tropes, this one’s for you.
Amira Khan is laser focused on her goals. She has a Masters thesis to complete and a promotion to get and nothing is going to stand in her way. When she returns home to finish her writing, she discovers her grandmother has rented the basement to a barbershop quartet. Talk about frustrating. How is she supposed to finish her thesis with them singing away all day? They are driving her up the wall. Especially Duncan who looks more like a lumberjack than a baritone in a barbershop quartet. As Amira and Duncan verbally spar, they learn more and more about each other and their feelings grow. Can they get over their culture clash and come together?
I love Amira. She is smart, feisty and goes after what she wants. Working in a male dominated field of engineering and being an Indian woman, she has had to deal with all kinds of ridiculousness. Her quick temper even earned her the nickname Wrath of Khan in high school. But she isn’t over the top either. Heron has done a great job balancing her character with a softer side that comes out when she is with her much younger sister Zahra or her Nanima (grandmother). I enjoyed the secondary characters and plot lines which were well developed, particularly her family friend Sameer and his not quite out relationship with his boyfriend Travis. It was a heartfelt exploration of the conflict that can arise intergenerationally when the older generation wants to hold on to their cultural traditions and the younger generation wants to define their own relationship with their culture. Heron does a great job of delving into the tension while giving the reader a good perspective from both sides.
Overall I would recommend if you enjoy smart, driven leading ladies. Best enjoyed with a warm cup of chai.