Her Unexpected Roommate- Review
Her Unexpected Roommate
By Jackie Lau
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Cider Bar Sisters #5
Publication Date: August 9,2022
Source: Received an ARC in exchange for a honest review
Rating: 4 Stars
Her former one-night stand is now her roommate. Oops.
When electrical engineer and depressed plushie enthusiast Rose Pang decides to go out alone one evening, she certainly doesn’t expect to meet easygoing landscaper Cal. They spend an enjoyable night together, and the next day, romance is on her mind. Cal promises to text…but he never does. Hurt, Rose tries her best to forget about him.
But several months later, in a terrible twist of fate, Rose discovers that her new roommate, Caleb Dempsey, is actually her former one-night stand. He claims he lost her number when his phone got run over. Rose isn’t buying his lies, and Cal offers to find another place to live as soon as he can.
After a few weeks, however, she starts to like having Cal as a roommate—he does all his chores, plus he’s a fun and calming presence—but she swears nothing will happen between them. Except her feelings for him grow as they spend more time together.
Can she risk giving him another chance, especially when her mental health is a little fragile? If it goes badly, she’ll also lose a great roommate. Maybe it would be safer to try dating someone new…
Content Warning: Depression, Suicide (Backstory)
I’ve been thinking about this book since I finished it two days ago. This may in fact be the best depiction of mental health I’ve read in a romance. Rose isn’t healed by Cal in the end. She still struggles with her mental health every day. They don’t always sleep in the same room. He acknowledges her mental health and does what he can to support her. Rose has bad days, weeks, or months, and that’s okay too. And she has good days too. She has a loving family, supportive friends, and a one-night stand who ends up becoming her new roommate. Cal is an adorable hero who isn’t perfect either. Life conspires to keep them apart after their one-night stand and when Cal reenters her life as her new roommate, Rose is rightfully wary. It takes a while and some hurdles for them to work their way back to a potential relationship. But it’s really the sweetness that gets to me. Cal just supports Rose. He supports and even joins in with her adorable plushies. He doesn’t take away her agency when it comes to decisions but he makes them easier for her. He knows when she’s overwhelmed and needs a break and doesn’t get offended. Honestly, this is just a beautiful story, a love story in the midst of really difficult, realistic moments. How much I related to Rose, the tough days, the mental spiraling, made this a complicated book to read. At times, I considered putting it down because of how much of Rose’s life called to me but I’m glad I continued and that Rose got her HEA. This is a tough story but a necessary one and honestly, it handled mental health in the most realistic of ways.