Title: First Comes Like (Modern Love #3)
Author: Alisha Rai
Publication date: February 16th, 2021
The author of The Right Swipe and Girl Gone Viral returns with a story about finding love in all the wrong inboxes…
Beauty expert and influencer Jia Ahmed has her eye on the prize: conquering the internet today, the entire makeup industry tomorrow, and finally, finally proving herself to her big opinionated family. She has little time for love, and even less time for the men in her private messages—until the day a certain international superstar slides into her DMs, and she falls hard and fast.
There’s just one wrinkle: he has no idea who she is.
The son of a powerful Bollywood family, soap opera star Dev Dixit is used to drama, but a strange woman who accuses him of wooing her online, well, that’s a new one. As much as he’d like to focus on his Hollywood fresh start, he can’t get Jia out of his head. Especially once he starts to suspect who might have used his famous name to catfish her…
When paparazzi blast their private business into the public eye, Dev is happy to engage in some friendly fake dating to calm the gossips and to dazzle her family. But as the whole world swoons over their relationship, Jia can’t help but wonder: Can an online romance-turned-offline-fauxmance ever become love in real life?
Of the three Modern Love books, First Comes Like was definitely my favorite. Jia is so happy to surprise the celebrity she’s been chatting with online by meeting up with him in person for the first time. But, when she walks up to Dev Dixit, Bollywood soap opera star, he has no idea who she is. Jia is humiliated at being catfished, but Dev can’t get this girl out of her mind. As he is a polite man, he checks to see who did this and finds out it’s none other than someone he knows. Before long they are fake dating (love that trope), but with a very conservative twist due to the cultural beliefs of Jia and Dev.
It was so refreshing to read a love story from a more conservative culture, where dating is a completely different ball game. So much romance that dominates the US is very Westernized, which I also love don’t get me wrong. But there are so many love stories that don’t involve spice and steam from the get go. There is more of an insta-love type feel where you know what you’re looking for in a partner and make the decision to go for it. Truly, I wish I could put this in better words because I loved it so much.
I will say that I wanted more from the ending. After this powerful love story, I was underwhelmed with how Alisha Rai chose to end the book. That’s really the only critique I have, but I find this with a lot of romance novels I review – I just always want more!
First Comes Like is a love story about family, culture, and online dating in the 21st century.
Happy reading, folks!