[Note from Frolic: Today, we welcome author Chantel Guertin to the site. She’s sharing her favorite online rom coms with us. Take it away, Chantel!]
Remember a time before social media, influencers, hashtags and viral videos? Me either, and yet, upon scrolling back to see what my Instagram feed looked like when I was first dating my now-husband about a decade ago, I discovered there were almost no pictures of us together until after we were married! In fact, I only posted a new pic every five months or so. My husband didn’t even have an Instragram account so who I was online was irrelevant to our relationship anyway.
How differently would things have played out if we’d met five years later, when I’d been posting daily, balancing my online persona as a beauty expert and brand ambassador who always had her hair, makeup and nails professionally done, with the mostly-wears-stretchy-clothes-and-sits-in-front-of-a-computer-writing-all-day person I was IRL? Would he have liked my online persona more than real-life Chantel? Or would he have been turned off, thinking I was as high maintenance as my feed made me seem? I’ll never know, but it got me thinking about my favorite rom-coms that take place, at least partly, in the digital world and how who we are online can affect our real lives, friendships and romances. Here are my top seven!
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry
Best friends Poppy and Alex couldn’t be more different. She’s an outgoing Instagram influencer who loves to travel; he’s a reserved homebody who’d rather be alone with a book. But their friendship has stayed strong, and the two friends go on vacation together every year — until they cross the lines of friendship and stop speaking, forcing Poppy to think about what she really wants.
My Not-So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella
Katie Brenner does what so many of us are guilty of: Making her not-so-glam life look picture-perfect on Instagram. When she gets fired from her job in London, she has no choice but to unplug, move back to rural Somerset and work at her parents’ glamping retreat. When her boss shows up, she has every intention of getting revenge on her — until she learns that Demeter’s life isn’t as it seems either.
The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory
When Nikole’s mediocre boyfriend suddenly (and embarrassingly) proposes to her on the big-screen at Dodgers Stadium, she has to say no. Of course, the incident goes viral but luckily for the freelance writer, Carlos, a dashing and chivalrous doctor, is more than happy to help her rebound. When one door closes, another one opens, after all.
The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler
Travel in time with Emma and Josh, two teenage best friends who, in 1996, have each just gotten their first computers. When they log on, they somehow find themselves on Facebook, 15 years in the future, watching their lives change with every click. It’s a sweet romance and nostalgia trip rolled into one perfect page-turner.
Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner
An instant hit last summer, this set up for this Weiner pick appears to be this Jennifer Weiner pick is follows plus-size influencer Daphne, who’s built a life she’s proud of in the six years since her friendship-ending fight with bestie Drue. Then Drue saunters back into her life, asking Daphne to be her maid of honour. Off to Cape Cod, where there’s a twist in the planned festivities: murder.
My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren
In advance of a ritzy gala, Millie and her group of platonic guy friends join a dating site in an attempt to score dates. But things go awry when Millie hooks up with her friend Reid, and she strikes up a relationship with him on the dating site — under a different name. I don’t recommend this tactic IRL, but you can still enjoy the antics in this fun read.
Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi
College freshman Penny and young café manager Sam, both trying to navigate adulthood, accidentally cross paths in Austin in an awkward meet-cute. They exchange numbers and form an intense, intimate bond that exists almost entirely via text message. Choi perfectly captures romance in a texting world.
Instamom by Chantel Guertin, out now!
In this #funny, #wise, #emotionally compelling look at modern love and finding your true path, a proudly kid-free influencer meets the ultimate #dealbreaker . . .
It’s the influencer’s golden rule: know your niche. Kit Kidding has found hers on Instagram, where she gets paid to promote brands and share expertly curated posts about her fun, fabulous, child-free life. Kit likes kids just fine, but she passionately believes that women who choose not to become mothers shouldn’t have to face guilt. Or judgement. Or really hot chefs who turn out to be single dads.
Will MacGregor is aggravating, sexy, persistent, averse to social media, and definitely a bad idea. As soon as Kit learns his parenting status, she vows to put their scorching one-night stand behind her and move on. But Will and Kit are thrown together on an Instagram campaign, and the more time she spends with him—and his whip-smart, eight-year-old daughter, Addie—the more difficult it is to stay away, much less sustain what Will so cleverly calls her “Resting Beach Face.” Kit’s picture-perfect career path is suddenly clashing with the possibility of a different future—messy, complicated, and real. Which life does she truly want? Will she have to re-invent herself? And will love still be waiting by the time she figures it out?