The Stand-Up Groomsman is heartwarming, entertaining, and lovely romcom with bi and Asian representation and also plus-size hero.
The Stand-Up Groomsman (Donut Fall in Love #2) by Jackie Lau
Publication Date : October 25, 2022
Publisher : Berkley Books
Read Date : October 24, 2022
Genre : Romance / Romcom
Pages : 368
Tea for this book : Indian Masala Chai
Disclaimer – Many thanks to publisher for eARC via NetGalley.
Previous book in the series-
A bridesmaid and groomsman put their differences aside to get their friends down the aisle in this opposites-attract steamy romantic comedy.
They say to never meet your heroes, but when Vivian Liao’s roommate gets engaged to her favorite actor’s costar, she has no choice but to come face-to-face with Melvin Lee again. He’s just as funny and handsome as he is on-screen…but thinks she is a snob and a sellout. It’s none of his business how she chooses to live her life, no matter how charismatic he is.
Mel is used to charming audiences as an actor and stand-up comedian but can’t connect to Vivian. She’s a smart, talented artist–which is why he thinks she’s wasting her life as a corporate finance drone. The only thing uniting them is their goal for the wedding to go off without a hitch.
As they collaborate on wedding cake and karaoke parties, Mel realizes he might have seriously misjudged this bridesmaid, while Vivian discovers the best man might just be as dazzling off-screen as he is on. With the wedding underway, maybe more than one happily ever after is in the future.
The Stand-Up Groomsman is lovely heartwarming romcom that focuses on Vivian Liao and the famous comedian, Melvin Lee, who had the opposite of meet-cute a year ago that created bad impression making both keep their distance but now it’s Lindsay and Ryan’s wedding and as best man and bridesmaid they are bound to see each other more and make them overcome their misunderstanding and misjudgment.
The story is about standing up for yourself, getting over the past and misjudgment, upbringing and how that shapes a person, family, relationships, friendship, and love.
Writing is entertaining, fun, and gripping with first-person alternative narrative from Mel and Vivian’s POV. This time New York is explored along with Toronto through wedding party and Mel living in New York. Plot is interesting and I was curious to see how Vivian and Mel will get over their misjudgment, how Vivian will get over her past, stand up for herself against her family, and how they are going to make their long-distance relationship work.
Vivian is reserved, aloof, keeps herself to herself and has social anxiety but since her friendship with Lindsay she started to open a little. It was interesting to read why she was cold towards most people. I hated her family and her ex for making her this guarded and thinking she has to give without expecting anything in return for any relationship. It was great how Mel could penetrate through her shell and wall around her heart, made her feel special, and realize she deserves to be taken care by someone.
Mel is my most favorite. He is famous stand-up comedian with huge heart. This is second book I read with plus-size hero and it was refreshing change from all tall and fit heroes in romance. He is lovely, sweet, caring, who loved attention, was amazing with people, and enjoyed goofing around. People who really know him could see he is vulnerable person behind his confident exterior. He suffered with self-doubt, insomnia, and couldn’t maintain long term relationship that also affected his confidence. It was lovely how he wanted to change that with Vivian and put more effort to keep relationship with her. I loved him for caring for Vivian and showing many ways how much he loved her.
I loved Mel’s family, especially his grandmother and younger sister. I loved them for being supportive and kind, annoying Mel at the same time and so giving much entertainment for readers.
Both Mel and Vivian are bi and asian. It was amazing to see that represented through Mel’s Stand-Up comedy shows. I agree with Vivian, Mel’s act weren’t exactly hilarious but it was his delivery that made him famous. Some still made me smile and laugh but they are not exactly hilarious. There is wedding in the first half of the book and all the wedding preparations, Bachelorette and Bachelor party, and wedding day games made the story entertaining.
Romance is slow burn with strangers-to-dislike-to-friends-to lovers arc. It’s slow burn and both Vivian and Mel took their time with getting to know each other and connecting through Lidsay and Ryan’s wedding. There are many lovely and sexy moments. But chemistry isn’t same as first book.
Climax was good but for me it came too late and wasn’t that impressive. I loved how Vivian could face her family and could reconcile with her sister in the end and I liked how everything worked out for Mel and Vivian. I liked that last big gesture by Vivian as well.
Why 4 stars-
Confrontations and drama with Vivian’s family came too late and Vivian not giving Mel and their relationship a chance because of past experience and her family didn’t feel solid reason and I also wasn’t impressed the way she realized her mistake.
Romance is steamy and all but I didn’t feel the chemistry and all the lovely feeling the way I felt in Donut Fall in Love.
Overall, The Stand-Up Groomsman is entertaining, heartwarming and lovely romcom with excellent bi and Asian representation but it’s not as amazing as its prequel.
I recommend this if you like,
Mel in first book
Bi and Asian representation
Character with social anxiety and insomnia
Wedding in the story
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