Today we're thrilled to welcome Sienna Snow (Rule Master) to Heroes and Heartbreakers. Arranged marriages are one of the most beloved tropes in romance, and today Sienna is here to prove they don't just work in fiction, but can in real life too. Thanks, Sienna!
An arranged marriage is one of the most popular tropes in romance fiction, especially in historicals. What would you say if I told you that happy, arranged marriages aren’t just a work of fiction? Would you believe that a modern, smart, fiercely independent woman would choose that path? If your answer is no, then I’d have to say you’re wrong, because I’m that girl who lived the trope.
My story isn’t that of a child bride or one where my parents decided for me. It is one with a more modern twist. Imagine a matchmaking service, where family and friends talk and pick potential mates for you. The boy or girl is vetted for education, family and social standing, then introduced to you. It’s up to the couple to decide if they match or not. With this type of matchmaking, the end goal is marriage, not dating.
A little more than fifteen years ago I had flown home from a hellacious week on a project. I worked as a consultant, specializing in the financial industry, in one of the top organization management firms in the world. With the prestigious job came seventy-hour work weeks and clients who didn’t always want to hear what I had to say. As my plane touched down in Atlanta that Friday at the beginning of March, the only thoughts on my mind were to forget the horrible week I’d had, stay in my pajamas all weekend, drink large quantities of wine and hang out with my girlfriends. A date wasn’t even on my radar.
As my cab driver made his way through I-85 traffic to my apartment in the Buckhead area of Atlanta, I called my dad to let him know I was back in Georgia. Before I even finished my greeting, he told me in his slightly English, slightly Indian accent, “There’s a boy coming to take you out to lunch tomorrow. He’s a bit of a nerd like you, so you should like him. Be ready.”
My first reaction to this news was “hell no.” At this point, I’d had a series of matchmaking dates that had been nothing but time-wasting disasters. I was trying to be a good daughter and follow my family’s cultural tradition, not the American way, where I could meet a guy, date for a while and then perhaps decide to get married. After my last “arranged” date, I told my mother I was going to change my religion and become a nun. Most of the men I was meeting thought I was too opinionated, too educated and not traditional enough. They had the perfect pedigree to match mine, but we had nothing in common, no chemistry, no spark of anything, zilch.
Well, that all changed the next day. After a long conversation with my mother, I agreed to meet this “boy.” She convinced me to go out, have a free meal and move on with my weekend. When the time came for this “boy” to pick me up, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I knew three facts about him. He was in town only for the day, his relatives were friends of my dad, and he was a doctor. I opened the door to my apartment, and standing before me was a very attractive, if a bit shy, man with a great smile. Since I was the local, I drove him to one of my favorite places to have lunch and dessert, Café Intermezzo in Midtown Atlanta.
The date ended up being one of the best of my life. From the moment I stepped out of my apartment until he brought me home, we never stopped talking. I felt a quiet chemistry between us that I’d never experienced with any of the “boys” my parents had tried to match me with before. He was genuinely interested in me, and his whole demeanor fascinated me. In the back of my mind, I knew this guy was different. The lunch that was only supposed to last an hour and a half turned into three and a half hours. We lingered in the restaurant and talked. When it was time to go home, I led him to my car, and for a brief second his hand grazed my lower back. I had instantaneous goosebumps, something that had never ever happened to me before. In that moment, I knew I was going to marry this man.
A month after that first day, we became engaged, and then a month after that, we had our American wedding, followed by an Indian one six months later. Now we are fifteen years into our marriage with no regrets but one—that we didn’t meet sooner.
SEE ALSO: When Weddings Go Wrong in Romance Novels
In my new release, Rule Master, Milla is an Italian heiress and international financier, who is faced with the same matchmaking ways my parent employed. Unlike me, she refuses to follow their traditional path to marriage. She rebels and finds the man of her dreams on her own. The one thing Mill and I have in common is that each of us gave our heart to the man who gave us goosebumps—and a whole lot more!
How about all you Heroes & Heartbreakers readers out there? Ever get fixed up on a date that lead to the altar? Tell me about it!
Learn more about or order a copy of Rule Master by Sienna Snow, available now:
Indian-American author Sienna Snow is a supermom writer with two bachelor’s degrees and two masters, who has taken the billionaire storyline and spun it on its head. The billionaires in her oh-so-hot Rules of Engagement erotic romance trilogy for Forever Yours are not only men but well-educated women from diverse cultures who know what they want and exactly how to get it—without the need for support and praise from their male counterparts. Read more about her on www.SiennaSnow.com and on her Facebook page.
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