Review: The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun

Title: The Charm Offensive
Author: Alison Cochrun
Publisher: Atria Books
Release Date: September 7th, 2021
Page Length: 358
Genre: RomCom
Age Range: Adult
Rep: Gay, Asexual, Demisexual, Bisexual, Lesbian, Pansexual, OCD, Panic Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Depression, Indian-American, Chinese-American, Black, Muslim
Rating: 4.25⭐

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Goodreads Synopsis: Dev Deshpande has always believed in fairy tales. So it’s no wonder then that he’s spent his career crafting them on the long-running reality dating show Ever After. As the most successful producer in the franchise’s history, Dev always scripts the perfect love story for his contestants, even as his own love life crashes and burns. But then the show casts disgraced tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw as its star.

Charlie is far from the romantic Prince Charming Ever After expects. He doesn’t believe in true love, and only agreed to the show as a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. In front of the cameras, he’s a stiff, anxious mess with no idea how to date twenty women on national television. Behind the scenes, he’s cold, awkward, and emotionally closed-off.

As Dev fights to get Charlie to connect with the contestants on a whirlwind, worldwide tour, they begin to open up to each other, and Charlie realizes he has better chemistry with Dev than with any of his female co-stars. But even reality TV has a script, and in order to find to happily ever after, they’ll have to reconsider whose love story gets told.

In this witty and heartwarming romantic comedy—reminiscent of Red, White & Royal Blue and One to Watch—an awkward tech wunderkind on a reality dating show goes off-script when sparks fly with his producer. 

Thoughts

Content Warning: panic attacks, racism, biphobia, homophobia, severe depression and anxiety, vomitting

I had heard really great things about The Charm Offensive, but I was hesitant – not sure why. Now I’m sad I took this long to pick it up! It was a fun RomCom with some serious representation! I was quite happy and surprised with the amount of rep in here actually!

At first Dev got on my nerves, the upbeat positive type of person usually isn’t my type of main character, but once we learned more about him I found myself growing attached to him. I also found that the closer Dev got to Charlie the more I started liking both the characters. I really feel it was a case of I like them together, but not alone lol. The side characters were also interesting and some of them even got a sort of redemption arc that I was happy to see.

This was based on The Bachelor and it’s very clear! I love this take on The Bachelor, but that may be because I was never a fan – I don’t know how fan would feel with this rendition. But I loved the take Alison took on this version of The Bachelor. I also loved the girl contestants and the way the interacted with both Dev and Charlie – even the girls were given more depth than I had anticipated and there are a couple that I would love a companion novel that follows them!

Overall, I really enjoyed this and would put it among my favourites of the RomCom genre and definitely near the top of my favourite RomComs based on reality tv!

One thought on “Review: The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun

  1. This book really took me by suprice. I knew I was going to like it but it moved me alot. The relationship between them and how it grew along the way, and one of those kitchenscenes just made me emotional that I had to put the book down in order to take in the importance of that scene. Definitely one of my favorite ones I´ve ever read 😀

    Like

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