Bride Test (Hoang)

The Bride Test 
Helen Hoang, 2019
Penguin Publishing
320 pp.

From the critically acclaimed author of The Kiss Quotient comes a romantic novel about love that crosses international borders and all boundaries of the heart.

Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions—like grief.

And love.

He thinks he's defective. His family knows better—that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride.

As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can't turn it down, thinking this could be the break her family needs.

Seducing Khai, however, doesn't go as planned. Esme's lessons in love seem to be working...but only on herself. She's hopelessly smitten with a man who's convinced he can never return her affection.

With Esme's time in the United States dwindling, Khai is forced to understand he's been wrong all along. And there's more than one way to love. (From the publisher.)

Author Bio
Helen Hoang is that shy person who never talks. Until she does. And the worst things fly out of her mouth. She read her first romance novel in eighth grade and has been addicted ever since.

In 2016, she was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in line with what was previously known as Asperger's Syndrome. Her journey inspired her 2018 novel, The Kiss Quotient. In 2019 she published The Bride Test.

She currently lives in San Diego, California, with her husband, two kids, and pet fish. (From the publisher.)

Book Reviews
Prepare to fall in love all over again.… The Bride Test is a charming love story that is equal parts sexy and sweet.

Refreshingly real.
Marie Claire

From the author that rocked the lit world with her 2018 novel The Kiss Quotient, comes an equally addicting read.
Women's Health

This new quirky, heartwarming romance will make you believe in love again.
Woman's Day

(Starred review) [A] touching… contemporary romance…. With serious moments offset by spot-on humor, this romance has broad appeal, and it will find a special place in the hearts of autistic people and those who love them.
Publishers Weekly

(Starred review) [E]xcellent detail and exceptionally well-developed protagonists keep the pages turning. While a few plot points are tied up a bit too neatly, the conclusion is truly satisfying.… [O]riginal, engaging, and… hard-hitting. Gorgeously done.
Library Journal

(Starred review) A young Vietnamese woman… travel[s] to America in hopes of finding a husband and a better life.… [Hoang's] characters… are just as pleasing and powerful as their evolution as a couple. A stunning, superior romance.
Kirkus Reviews

Discussion Questions
1. Khai grew up in America, while My was born and raised in a small village in Vietnam. What cultural differences can you see and how do you think this affects who they are now?

2. In the beginning of the book, Khai’s mother is in Vietnam to search for a wife for Khai. Do you think it’s wrong of his mother to meddle and interfere in his personal life, or is this justified as an act of love?

3. Prior to reading this book, how would you have imagined an autistic man? How does Khai compare to this vision?

4. Throughout the book, Khai is adamant about not having feelings, thus creating a chasm between him and everyone else. When do you see a breakthrough in this way of thinking? How does My help with this?

5. Khai memorizes a set of rules that his sister made him that lists what he should do when he’s with a girl (page 37). Do you agree with this list?

6. Though My originally goes to America with the purpose of seducing Khai, a lot of her time is spent going to night school and working at Co Nga’s restaurant. This reflects the hard work that immigrants go through to build a life in the U.S. Can you or anyone you know relate to this?

7. My lies to Khai about her occupation and tells him that she’s an accountant. She does this because she’s embarrassed by her sta-tion in life but also to feel some sort of connection to him. Should she have just told him the truth from the beginning or do you think her lie helps bring them together at least a little?

8. As adamant as Khai is about not loving My, he does things for her that show how much he does care about her, such as carrying her and helping to find her father. What other ways does he show he loves her?

9. At the end of the book, Khai tells My he loves her in Vietnamese. What is the significance of this?
(Questions issued by the publisher.)

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