Book Reviews

The 5-Day Plan by Ashish Rastogi

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Romance
Reviewed by Kristin F. on 05-October-2023

Book Blurb

Curly-haired, bespectacled, Dr. Akhil can replace your hip without a sweat, but he is a rambling, fidgeting fool outside the operation room—an absolute klutz—the worst qualifications to have for a man in search of love. However, one can overcome any obstacle with a bit of planning. Right?

Plan A is simple. Unfortunately, the heart-to-heart blows up in shouting hysterics, tears, and abandonment. Worry not. Time for Plan B.

A year in London, and Plan B goes belly up. Thanks to a reality dating show. Anyway, who cares. Akhil has his plant babies, Priyamvada, Ms. Fancy Pants, and Zami. They are not traitors like the stars that Akhil loves to gaze at night. The twinklers conspire to bring the dark enemy back into his orbit.

Nope, not happening. Akhil has a plan. This time a three-letter one. Plan KDA - Keep Dan Away. But it is not easy blocking "the player" hell-bent on dribbling his way past Akhil's defences one accident at a time- ready to score. Add the nosy Keely matriarch and her two sidekick clowns to flying forks, tripping legs, and an accomplished kiss coach; our Akhil is in deep trouble.


Book Review

His family has disowned him for being gay while still haranguing him to come home and marry a proper Indian girl. Dr. Akhil dreams of finding a man he can date and call his boyfriend, unfortunately, by his own admission, his social dating skills are non-existent. At the urging of his best friend, he signs up for an online dating show. It does not go well.


Dan is a London football (the soccer variety) star, well-known in the tabloids for his attention-getting exploits on and off the field. Dan is paired with Dr. Akhil for the disastrous dinner date. While the chemistry is obvious, Dan isn’t ready to do or be more than the sports playboy he is. But Fate is fickle, and when Dr. Akhil is thrown in his path again, Dan is ready to be the boyfriend Dr. Akhil asked for. But Fate doesn’t make things easy for Dan, and he has a lot of apologizing to do, if he can get Dr. Akhil to listen.


This is a slow-burn romance that drew me in and had me turning the pages to see what would happen next. By slow-burn, I mean years. And I loved the story even more for that time span. So many male/male romances happen within a week, month or months, maybe a year and the characters click together like magnets. So few authors stretch the time frame farther, but this author did and it worked. It worked really well – it gave the characters time to grow emotionally and meaningfully and moved the story out of insta-love to something more emotionally connecting. I loved that.


The prose in this was delightful and had me smiling more than once - Dr. Akhil talking to his plants, snippets of social media posts, witty bantering and snappy dialog between the two main characters and sub-characters added to the overall enjoyment.


If I had to quibble, Dan’s family was a tich over the top in the matchmaking department, but it’s a super small quibble. They were definitely a positive contrast for acceptance, openness, and “family” against the backdrop of Dr. Akhil’s situation. For all their fame and quirkiness, there were sweet hidden depths to Dan’s family.


As I noted above, there is no insta-love here, there is no sudden “All is forgiven!” resolution and fall passionately into each other’s arms. There are some issues that both men need to work through, some emotional growing that had to take place, and a good kick in the proverbial nether regions to make the characters realize what was in front of them was a really good thing.


Recommended if you like a slow, sweet romance that focuses on an emotional connection under the guise of witty banter. This is perfect reading for a blustery fall day, a soft couch, and a hot cuppa.




DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by the author for the purpose of a review.


Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 271 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 25-June-2023
Price $2.99 ebook, $12.99 paperback
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