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August 9, 2022

Mr. Perfect on Paper by Jean Meltzer ~ a Review

by MK French

Matchmaker Dara Rabinowitz created J-Mate, a popular Jewish dating app. She can set up other people, but her own has been a mess. When her bubbe shares the checklist for “The Perfect Jewish Husband” on national television, news anchor Chris Steadfast proposes they create a show based on her criteria to find her own husband. Chris is the opposite of her list, a non-Jewish single dad, but the attraction between them still flares to life. Dara starts questioning if “perfect on paper” can compete with how hard she’s falling for Chris…

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of romantic comedy Mr Perfect on Paper by Jean Meltzer
August 2022; MIRA; 978-0778386872
audio, ebook, print (384 pages); romantic comedy

Dara is so very anxious, I felt like I was absorbing some of it as I was reading her chapters. This isn't a bad thing, we're in her POV pretty deeply. List making, algorithms, and logic help her combat her myriad fears, and never once is it played for laughs or she's put down because of her anxiety. As she says, it's a part of her and just something else for her to live with. Chris' life is a hot mess next to hers, and grief still weighs on him at times. He's a thoughtful and caring man, one you can instantly connect with as well. Before Miriam opens her mouth on the show, we know that there will be a connection between them and that they fill the needs they don't even know they have. Matchmaking is very much an art, and we see Dara in her element from chapter one. She tried to turn it into an algorithm as well, which really only goes so far. It's difficult to codify feelings, after all, and that's an important element for every couple. 

We know the outcome of this book before Dara and Chris do, and the challenges they face are very real ones. Like Dara's anxiety, it's dealt with honestly and realistically. Being Jewish is very important to her, a fundamental part of her family and culture. We get glimpses of the importance of the high holy days, the history and presence of those days so we understand it as well. (I loved the shout-out to the Matzo Ball Max from Jean's prior book, a great stealth sentence in the story. ) The disasters of dates before finding Mr. Perfect on Paper, and the growing distress regarding emotions, all bring us back to the importance of understanding and communication as well as commitment in a relationship. Trust me, it isn't as boring as that list just sounded. It absolutely is a hilarious segment in the book. Another great romance from Jean Meltzer you should absolutely pick up and read.

Buy Mr. Perfect on Paper at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever.

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