ARC Review: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Title: When Dimple Met Rishi

Author: Sandhya Menon

Published: 30 May 2017 | Simon Pulse

Date Read: 10 June 2017

Synopsis:

A New York Times bestseller

The rom-com that everyone’s talking about! Eleanor & Park meets Bollywood in this hilarious and heartfelt novel about two Indian-American teens whose parents conspire to arrange their marriage.

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.

*ARC kindly provided by Simon Pulse thru Edelweiss for review*

Ever since I read about When Dimple Met Rishi, I’m immediately head-over-heels excited for it and wanted to read it pronto! Some of you might say and may find this book cliché and predictable but for me, this is one of the most adorable, fun and lighthearted book I’ve read this year!!!

“It was beginning. Her freedom, her independence, her period of learning-about herself, about the world, about her career. She was finally doing it. Here, she wouldn’t be Dimple Shah, wayward, Americanized daughter of immigrant parents; she’d be just Dimple Shah, future web developer.”

Dimple Shah is attending the Insomnia Con – a camp for aspiring web developers. She’s off to Stanford at the end of summer and she’s pretty much excited to start college and study coding.

Rishi Patel is attending the Insomnia Con – a camp for aspiring web developers. But he’s not an aspiring web developer. He’s there to woo Dimple Shah, his future wife.

When Dimple Met Rishi is like a dose of a romantic comedy movie. Written in alternating POV’s of Dimple and Rishi, there’s the awkward first meet, the getting to know you, the fun moments and of course the falling in love. As I’ve mentioned earlier, some readers might find this story cliché and predictable but I find it adorable, fun and fresh. I’m excited with each turn of the page.

Dimple and Rishi are probably one of the most fun and memorable characters I’ve read. They feel real and very much relatable for me.

“Seriously? That’s what you think I should be relegating my brain space to? Looking nice? Like, if I don’t make the effort to look beautiful, my entire existence is nullified? Nothing else matters-not my intellect, not my personality or my accomplishments; my hopes and dreams mean nothing if I’m not wearing eyeliner?”

Dimple Shah is a headstrong character from the very beginning. I admire her determination and will to reach her dreams. I enjoy reading about her geekiness over coding/computer stuffs.

Rishi Patel is a true blue nice guy from the very beginning. Nope, he’s not perfect, but for me, he’s the epitome of an all-out nice guy. He also had a good sense of humor which really spices up the story. He wanted to please and make his family proud of him and really values his Indian culture. He’s a bit of a geek too with his love for drawing and doing his own comics.

“Rishi..he was like a pop song you thought you couldn’t stand, but found yourself humming in the shower anyway.”

Dimple and Rishi’s relationship are off to a very rocky start (with iced coffee spilling incident included). There’s no love-at-first-sight and there’s no insta-love, they started with nothing and it was refreshing to see how their relationship progressed throughout the story.

Dimple was against the whole arranged marriage thing. She’s focused in studying and reaching for her dreams instead of looking for the IIH – Ideal Indian Husband. To her, arranged marriages are more about practicalities than romance and she’s not yet ready to dive into the domestic Indian wife life because she have dreams to pursue. Though saddened by it, Rishi has been understanding with Dimple’s thoughts about their arranged marriage and that made me admire him more.

But since they are the same camp and has been partnered together for a project, they spend more time together, getting to know each other until they find themselves liking and falling for each other.

Of course, there is a drama on the last couple of chapters but it was resolved satisfyingly. Both characters ended up apologizing and owning up to each other’s mistakes. I also saw changes especially with Dimple. She started off mean and a bit cruel but she ended up being more open and a bit nicer, I guess.

I’ve read a couple of books about arranged marriages and most of them are treated in a negative tone with all the force and abuse, but I like how Sandhya handled this topic on this book in such a positive way. It kind of deletes the negative connotation that I have with arranged marriages.

The author, being an Indian herself shared to us about their culture in a very interesting way. I enjoyed reading about Hindi references, clothing and even Bollywood stuffs.

Overall, When Dimple Met Rishi is a fast, fun and adorable read. I’m recommending it to each and every one of you!

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