This is the kind of book I wanted and expected when I picked up Matchmaking for Beginners. This was sweet and charming, and absolutely perfect for the moment.
Nina never knew her dad and her mother is a world traveling photographer. Nina, on the other hand, is perfectly happy with a relatively contained life and uses books as her escape from reality. She rents a guest house which is perfectly arranged for her needs, has a cat, trivia team and book clubs, and works at a local bookstore in a neighborhood in LA. She has a few close friends, she has a perfectly organized planner, and mostly has a handle on her anxiety.
Then, something happens that might mean Nina needs to open up her life to more people. Her previously unknown father has died, she is in the will and she has various brothers, sisters and even nieces and nephews that are her age. This forces her out of her comfort zone – despite her hesitation, she finds herself liking some of her new family members even if she doesn’t enjoy the added drama of family interactions, especially with one of her nieces.
As Nina finds her life expanding due to her family, she also starts realizing that she is attracted to a member of an opposing team at her trivia competition. Initially, Nina hates him because his team is the only real competition they have, but she eventually admits to her attraction and after a few entertaining scheduling issues (her planner is very organized), they start seeing each other.
Nina is just such a sweet and relatable heroine – her quirks are entirely understandable based on her background, and I think most book lovers will be able to relate to her love of reading, and be jealous of her various book clubs. Even though she is shy and has anxiety, she has also created a nice, if overly regimented, life for herself, and this novel shows her creating more with her life, and dealing with unplanned chaos as she allows more people in.