How far would you go to find the perfect husband? All the way back to the 1950s?
In a world full of happily-ever-after love, Meri Newberg feels like the last young woman on the planet to be single, at least in her Christian friend group. So when she’s handed a strange present at the latest wedding–a 1950s magazine article of “ways to get a husband”–she decides there’s nothing to lose by trying out its advice. After all, she can’t get any more single, can she?
Her brother’s roommate sees the whole thing as a great opportunity. Not to fall in love–Kai Kamaka has no interest in the effort a serious relationship takes. No, this is a career jump start. He talks Meri into letting him film every silly husband-catching attempt for a new online show. If it goes viral, his career as a cameraman will be made.
When Meri Me debuts, it’s an instant hit. People love watching her lasso men on street corners, drop handkerchiefs for unsuspecting potential beaus, and otherwise embarrass herself in pursuit of true love. But the longer this game goes on, the less sure Kai is that he wants Meri to snag anyone but him. The only problem is that he may not be the kind of husband material she’s looking for . . .
With droll comic timing, unbeatable chemistry, and a zany but relatable cast of characters, Angela Ruth Strong has created a heartfelt look at the reality of modern Christian dating that readers will both resonate with and fall for.
I enjoyed reading Husband Auditions, and I especially loved the romcom premise for the story set in Portland, Oregon. The story opens with Meri arriving on her brother’s doorstep in a bridesmaid’s dress with a suitcase and a plan to stay there for the summer. Meri’s last single friend is married, and she needs a new permanent place to live. Meri is unimpressed by her friend’s grandmother who gave her a 1950’s magazine article with 101 tips on how to catch a husband.
Kai is best friends with Meri’s brother, Charlie, who’s about to leave to work in Ecuador. Kai is intrigued by Meri’s marriage dilemma. He offers to help Meri find a husband by creating a YouTube channel and filming her search using the 1950’s tips to attract a man. Kai is looking for film content to use as a demo for picking up a new job on a tv series based in Portland.
Meri thinks Kai is lazy, and Meri’s brother warns her about how Kai is not marriage material. Kai has Hawaiian heritage, and he works the graveyard shift at the local tv station in Portland. Kai shares Charlie’s home with Gemma, a beautiful blonde screenwriter and actor who’s never short of male attention. Kai, Charlie, and Gemma are old friends from film school.
Meri is a nurse and she falls into a routine of filming with Kai after work. The filming situations are hilarious, the interest and interaction from their YouTube followers is immense, and I smiled my way through the story. Meri and Kai secretly develop feelings for each other, and a beautiful friends-to-more romance develops as they get to know each other.
The story is in first person, present tense. I loved seeing the characters challenge each other, consider what makes a healthy marriage, and grow in faith during the story. I recommend Husband Auditions to contemporary romance readers who like light-hearted romcoms with LOL moments and a relevant faith element in the story.