The Stand-In

- Lily Chu

Goodreads Book Blurb:

How to upend your life:

–Get fired by gross, handsy boss
–Fail to do laundry (again)
–Be mistaken for famous Chinese actress
–Fall head-first into glitzy new world

Gracie Reed is doing just fine. Sure, she was fired by her overly “friendly” boss, and yes, she still hasn’t gotten her mother into the nursing home of their dreams, but she’s healthy, she’s (somewhat) happy, and she’s (mostly) holding it all together.

But when a mysterious SUV pulls up beside her, revealing Chinese cinema’s golden couple Wei Fangli and Sam Yao, Gracie’s world is turned on its head. The famous actress has a proposition: Due to their uncanny resemblance, Fangli wants Gracie to be her stand-in. The catch? Gracie will have to be escorted by Sam, the most attractive—and infuriating—man Gracie’s ever met.

If it means getting the money she needs for her mother, Gracie’s in. Soon Gracie moves into a world of luxury she never knew existed. But resisting Sam, and playing the role of an elegant movie star, proves more difficult than she ever imagined—especially when she learns the real reason Fangli so desperately needs her help. In the end, all the lists in the world won’t be able to help Gracie keep up this elaborate ruse without losing herself… and her heart.

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My Review:

***Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca for an eARC of this book. The following review is my honest reflection on the text provided.

enjoyable/easy to read:
3.5/5
This deceptively sweet story hit me right in the feels.

Initially an Audible Original audiobook, I was lucky enough to receive an eARC of The Stand-In ahead of its publication in May. I’ve read some rave reviews of the audiobook and Phillipa Soo’s talents as a narrator. Though I haven’t listened to it, I can definitely attest to the enjoyability of this story in print.

The Stand-In reads like a rom-com that would already exist if we lived in a world with better representation. The characters are relatable, the plot is engaging, and I found it extremely difficult to put down. The will-they-won’t-they tension between Gracie and Sam is surprisingly fun, and I loved how Gracie and Fangli’s relationship developed. Despite the cookie-cutter chick flick feel to most of the story, there’s a surprising complexity that lingers long after the last page.

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