Roomies by Christina Lauren

Summary :

Note : If you read about my last post on The Joshua Bell Experiment, you’ll find the theme to be very similar or almost the same.

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Roomies by Christina Lauren introduces us to Holland, a young woman living in Hell’s Kitchen in New York City and working with her Uncle Robert (who is her uncle by marriage to her Uncle Jeff) at a Broadway theatre where he’s the musical director for the hottest show in town. Holland has had a thing for this subway busker for close to 6 months now. Not only is he hot and Irish, but also a great musician. 

Over the last 6 months, she’s memorised his schedule and his movements and she tries to justify it by telling her uncles and he bestfriend (Lulu) that it’s all about his music. They are finally formally introduced when he saves her from an attack on the subway, but disappears when she files an official report.

She laters learns more about him and his problems and tries to help him out by introducing him to her Uncle Robert. However, she must do something practically illegal and reckless in order to help them out. 

Read the book to find out how it unfolds, because I don’t want to give out any more spoilers.

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My Thoughts :

So after a couple of months of reading some serious books and work journals, I felt the need to mix it up and do some light/happy reading and what’s better than a nice romance novel eh?

To me, most of these are fairy tales with their co-incidental love and happy endings. It may or may not be real (depending on whether you’re a believer or sceptic) but they certainly make you feel good. I think I have figured out what makes a romance novel work. 

It’s the way the characters fall in love. How they come close. How they connect. How they have their own inside jokes and little couple things. I think it is the process of love and how well it is portrayed that really makes the readers swoon. If you ask me, any story that makes the readers root for it’s protagonists is a story worth reading.

If so, this books ticks all boxes, because it does make you swoon.

It has 2 adorable central leads (which you probably will get slightly envious of), a dreamy supporting cast of a bestfriend and the most loving uncles; all stitched into reality with a scenic New York City, the broadway and some interesting drama. The book scratches the surface of the reality of immigration and illegal immigrants just enough to make it believable but not too technical. 

What is also unique is that this is not one but a writing duo, Christina Lauren. Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings are long-time writing partners and best friends according to their bio on christinalaurenbooks.com. I simply love that idea!

Writing a book with your bestfriend. It is something intangible that you’ll share for life, along with bouncing ideas off each other and having the best of both worlds. 

Is this book a must read? Probably not (especially if Romance isn’t your genre).

But is it a good and fun read and nicely written? For sure!!

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Grateful

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Reposting an old poem today which is really close to my heart. This poem is an ode and me showing my gratitude to some very strong female personalities in my life (friends and family), who’ve time and again supported me when I needed help, educated me when I was wrong and been there for me always. Originally published on May 20, 2019 here.


To the girl who thinks she’s not good enough,

To the girl who thinks she’s not as strong,

To the girl who thinks this hurdle she cannot get past,

To the girl who cannot stand up to point out you’re wrong.

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To you pretty ladies I’ve only got one thing to say,

You are wonderful the way you are, in your own beautiful way!

From the lady responsible for my existence today,

To the lady who held my hand when I went astray.


From the one who taught me to read and write,

To the one who loves to kiss me goodnight.

I am surrounded by y’all like a bee around a flower,

Walking around in ignorance, unaware of your power.

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Its an open untalked secret this circle of life,

From the days I needed my mother to seeking refuge in my wife.

Y’all run this world and make it a better place,

I hope one day I can repay you for every sacrifice and tear behind that face.


Until then I say “Thank You” and admire the graceful,

For your mere existence I am forever grateful.

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Guilty-Pleasure Chocolate Cupcakes

Gluten Free, Refined Sugar Free, Egg-less Cupcakes
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PREP TIME – 15 mins

COOK TIME – 20 mins

SERVES – 12-15 portions

INGREDIENTS: –

  • 1 Cup Oats Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Dark Cocoa Powder (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 3/4 Cup Raw Sugar (ground)
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 Tsp Instant Coffee Powder

METHOD: –

  • In a bowl sift all dry ingredients; Oats Flour, Cocoa Powder, Baking Soda and Baking Powder.
  • In another bowl mix all wet ingredients, first the raw sugar and coconut oil, then add in Vanilla extract, Coffee and Milk-Mix well.
  • Slowly mix the dry and wet ingredients together; remember not to over-mix or else you will get dense cupcakes.
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  • Once the batter is formed, pre-heat your oven to 180C and fill your cupcake liners a little between half to two-third of the liner.
  • Heat the cupcakes for 20mins at 160C, keep an eye on the cupcakes and check once at 15mins depending on your oven heat.
  • Remove the cupcakes from the cupcake tray & enjoy hot or let them cool down for 15 mins and consume. 🙂

NOTES: – You could add melted chocolate on top but we liked a simple sliced almond crust since the cupcakes are going to be gooey thanks to the Oats Flour and Milk.

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Game Review – Splendor

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Hello after a long break, I hope you enjoyed reading about Azul and Phase 10. Today I’m introducing a new game to you, called Splendor.

Splendor is a card based board game which was launched in 2014, and can be played by 2-4 players. The game consists of 40 gem token, 90 development cards and 10 Nobel tiles.

Imagine yourself to be a gem merchant in this game, where your objective is to be the first player to reach 15 points. You can get points by collecting the cards placed on the table. The set up of the game is illustrated in the below picture.

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The number on the top left corner of the card denotes the points the particular card carries, usually the cards from the green row do not have any points, however they are cheaper to buy.

To begin with, a player can either pick up from the bank, 3 tokens of different colour or 2 tokens of the same colour (placed at the top in the picture). However, at no point in time you can have more than 10 tokens on you. Pick up tokens keeping in mind a card that you would like to buy, initially start buying cards from the cards placed in the green row.

Once you’ve bought the cards they are yours to keep, you do not have to return them to the bank, while you do have to return the tokens back while making a purchase. For example if I have already bought the first ruby card by giving 2 sapphire tokens and 1 emerald token to the bank and I now wish to buy the emerald card on the left of the last row I will only have to give 1 diamond token, sapphire token and onyx token, I will not need an additional ruby token.

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In one turn you can either pick up tokens, or buy a card. You cannot do both. Now coming to the Nobel tiles, these are the ones placed at the top. You need to have the number of cards stated there with you to be eligible for these tiles. For example, to buy the leftmost tile I will need to have with me 3 emerald cards, 3 sapphire cards and 3 ruby cards. If at the end of your turn, you become eligible for a Nobel tile, you pick it up. It does not count as a separate chance. Nobel tiles can only be picked up with cards and not tokens.

That’s all, you’re all set to play Splendor. I have left out a small detail in this article, i.e. the use of the gold tokens. Pick up your game today from Boardgames Hub and know this twist.

Note : Stay tuned because Boardgames Hub is coming up with an exclusive collection of new games soon and we at Bombay Ficus are really excited to share them with you! Use code ‘Bombay Ficus’ to avail exclusive offers and discounts. Click on the button below!

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