When I saw this title at my library, I knew I had to get my hands on this book. As an Indian-Canadian, I was really excited to read a book that showed what life is like for a child growing up “indian” while being raised in a Western country. So here are my thoughts:
Summary (Goodreads): Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?
Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.
The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?
Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.
This book made me very happy and I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book! It was fun, it was a fresh perspective, and it was just downright adorable when it came to romance! I can go on and on about this book but I’m going to try to break it down into specific sections that I think were done really well:
First of all, the author created some wonderfully memorable characters. Dimple is such an amazing protagonist, fierce yet sensitive and full of spunk. It’s easy to connect with her and you really want to root for her! Compared to Dimple, Rishi’s character is much softer, but still likable. Just because he has a gentler and more romantic personality in no way means he is a pushover, and the way he stands up for his beliefs is admirable. It is easy to see how the two of them have this natural friendship and chemistry, and readers can’t help but “ship” them!
One of the things I really loved about this book is the way it explored parental pressure in an Indian family setting. As someone in her 20s, I could really empathize with Dimple, who was being pressured to consider marriage instead of focus on her career. This is something I’m going through currently, and let me tell you, it is NOT fun! The author explores this in such a way that even people who haven’t necessarily experienced this can still understand what Dimple is feeling and going through. The author also ensured that she showed both sides of the situation, through Rishi’s character and his own acceptance and support of arranged marriage.
Not only was the plot interesting, the writing style also made the story very readable. I loved that the author had alternating chapters from Rishi and Dimple’s point of view to give a fuller picture and see what was going on in each of their heads. It made this such a cute read and there were so many times when I would internally “aww” over something Rishi or Dimple said/thought about the other person. It’s always nice to see both people’s feelings evolve in a romance, and the author definitely delivers on that front.
All in all, this book was a major success for me. It is unique in its representation of second-generation Indians and their struggle to assimilate into the Western culture while still adhering to Indian traditions. It also highlighted the importance of females in STEM, and how girls should never have to give up on their dreams. And it had one of the cutest romances ever, and I completely fell in love with Rishi and Dimple and their growing chemistry. For those reasons, I’m giving this book a 5/5 stars!
Happy reading ~