I’ll marry you.
Professor Valentyn Shevchenko isn’t sure how to react when, after months of ineffective flirting, the cute barista’s first words to him are a proposal. In many ways, Peter Grunberg is the solution to all his problems. With his work visa inexplicably denied, Valentyn is running out of options to keep from being deported. But is a green card marriage really the answer? Is it still a marriage of convenience when he’s this attracted to his potential spouse?
Peter came to his uncle’s coffee shop in Boulder, Colorado, to reset his life after his struggles with selective mutism returned with a vengeance. He never meant his first words to the handsome ecology professor to be an offer of marriage, but he’s not backing out now. It doesn’t matter that Peter struggles to find words. He can say everything he needs to with his body.
Though this relationship may have started out back-to-front, Valentyn and Peter are determined to make their fake marriage real. But one misstep in their immigration interview could bring everything crashing down. They’ll have to hope that their love is enough to overcome all their obstacles and give them the prize they’ve both been dreaming of: a certified happy ever after.
I don’t know exactly what it is about the fake relationships trope that makes me so happy but I really get a kick out of them. I suppose it’s the “let’s pretend and *boom* suddenly it’s not so fake anymore” that brings a smile to my face every time. I don’t typically gravitate towards politically charged books but for some reason, this one pulled me in. I got a little more than I bargained for but I’m certainly not complaining. Selective mutism is not something I’m overly familiar with. Peter has struggled to communicate his whole life. He has discovered coping mechanisms over years including therapy and regiment but recently he lost some of the control and slid back, helpless to its dominance. Finding himself a prisoner to his own body, Peter is limited to specific individuals he can verbalize with. The sexy regular at the coffee shop he works at is not on that list. Nope, most definitely not. So, no one is more surprised than Peter himself when he utters three words to the man. Even more shocking is the fact it’s a marriage proposal. They begin a cautious relationship, focusing on friendship and building trust. A heated moment early on confirms they are very compatible in a physical sense but it’s going to take more than lust to convince immigration that Valya and Peter are the real deal.
Both Peter and Valya are so easy to fall for, I can see how they fall for each other. Peter may be quiet but he’s full of personality and just needs someone that can read him when his words fail him. Valya loves living in the United States and is terrified of losing his work visa. When his worst fears become a very real possibility he vents his concerns to his best friend. They happen to be at their favorite coffee shop and their private conversation inadvertently includes another set of ears. Which is where Peter becomes the hail mary. Valya is deeply concerned and worries (a lot) but I couldn’t fault him for his anxiety. The progression of their relationship felt very authentic.
I loved how they overcame the obstacles blocking their path and ended up falling madly in love in the process. Peter’s condition was only one of the hurdles they faced. From the endearments to the saucy beverage of choice, I loved the Ukraine bits brought to the pages. I loved the emotions that fueled their messaging. I loved nearly all of the secondary cast, including Valya’s best friend and Peter’s aunt. The ending picked up speed but I absolutely loved the epilogue. If you’re anticipating a HEA, you get it. If you’re searching for some feel-good love conquers all, this could be exactly what you need.
Fraudulent intentions become truthful testimonies. Patience and understanding prove to be invaluable. And sometimes fate truly knows best.
If a fake-out, make-out, beyond-the-shadow-of-a-doubt sounds good to you…I think you should check out this Professor and his Mylyy.
TITLE: The Professor’s Green Card Marriage
AUTHOR: Heidi Cullinan
RELEASE DATE: February 18, 2020
BUY LINKS: Amazon