Tuesday 20 December 2022

Serena Singh Flips the Script

Finished December 16
Serena Singh Flips the Script by Sonya Lalli

This novel is a romance, but it also touches on other life issues that give the novel real depth. As the novel opens, Serena is about to start a new job, as creative director for a woman-led advertising agency. She is also immersed in her role as emcee for her younger sister Natasha's wedding. 
Natasha is marrying a white man, who comes from a wealthy family, and the couple will be living in the Washington home of her in-laws. Since the in-laws often travel, and the house is large, they aren't anticipating any issues with sharing the home. 
When Serena first moved into the city from the suburbs she grew up in, she had to save up for a long time to get the rent money and she had to be firm about her decision to defy the cultural norms of living at home until marriage. Serena has no plans to ever marry or to have children. She loves her career and although she's had serious relationships, only one ever threatened to get serious enough to involve marriage, and that one is far in the past. 
When Natasha pushes her towards the attractive photographer doing the wedding photos, Serena is open to dating, but they are both busy and see each other only a couple of times a week. 
Serena is dealing with a new challenging job, a team of staff that report to her, not all of whom are enthusiastic about her hire, and the loss of her best friend, Natasha as she is now busy in her marriage. As Serena explores options for finding friends, from social media apps to clubs and activities, she also finds herself opening herself to the possibility of finding a friend in her daily life. 
It is only gradually that we see what has led to Serena making herself into an independent woman who doesn't need a husband or family, and that we realize that she still has unresolved issues around this area of her life.
I really liked her as a character, and how she is both a successful woman in her career and an empathetic one who cares about her family, friends, and coworkers. She has dealt with men taking credit for her work and has found ways to get past that and shine in her own right. 
Because the setting is in D.C., it was only partway through the book that I realized that the author is Canadian, an added bonus. 
A quick and enjoyable read. 

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