Serena Singh Flips the Script by Sonya Lalli
Genre: Women’s Fiction/Romance
Heat Level: Closed Door
Release Date: February 16, 2021
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher.
Serena Singh is tired of everyone telling her what she should want–and she is ready to prove to her mother, her sister, and the aunties in her community that a woman does not need domestic bliss to have a happy life.
Things are going according to plan for Serena. She’s smart, confident, and just got a kick-ass new job at a top advertising firm in Washington, D.C. Even before her younger sister gets married in a big, traditional wedding, Serena knows her own dreams don’t include marriage or children. But with her mother constantly encouraging her to be more like her sister, Serena can’t understand why her parents refuse to recognize that she and her sister want completely different experiences out of life.
A new friendship with her co-worker, Ainsley, comes as a breath of fresh air, challenging Serena’s long-held beliefs about the importance of self-reliance. She’s been so focused on career success that she’s let all of her hobbies and close friendships fall by the wayside. As Serena reconnects with her family and friends–including her ex-boyfriend–she learns letting people in can make her happier than standing all on her own.
Serena Singh is content with her life. Her baby sister is getting married, she’s getting a new job and she has an okay-ish relationship with her parents. Maybe they won’t always be on her case to get married and have kids now that her sister is getting married.
It seems like all of Serena’s friends are at a different stage in life than her. They’re almost all married with kids and she’s feeling left behind. It doesn’t help that her new job isn’t quite as easy as she thought it was going to be. Her team is resentful of her position and isn’t exactly wanting to make anything easy for her. It isn’t until she bonds with a fellow co-worker, Ainsley that Serena starts to really examine herself. Is she too focused on her career? What about making new connections and hobbies?
I loved connecting with Serena and especially her mother, Sandeep. Being brought up as a Sikh Punjabi I related to so much of what both of them were going through. I am a second generation South Asian/Indian American and often felt and still do feel the same pressure that Serena was feeling. I really liked seeing the growth of her daughters from Sandeep’s perspective as well.
But what started off as a really strong book, dragged for me in the middle. The pacing was off at times and I do feel that there were parts of the story included that didn’t really add to Serena’s journey. The romance with a former flame didn’t really add to the story and I definitely did not feel the connection or angst of a second chance romance.
I appreciated the aspect that Serena was a strong and independent woman. I really loved the relationship she had with her friend Ainsley and her mother Sandeep. Overall I enjoyed the cultural references in Serena Singh Flips the Script, but the romance and latter half of the book fell flat for me.