Last weeks novel was A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev.
I haven’t reviewed a romance novel here before. I tend to shy away from them, since they can so frequently be glaringly formulaic and convoluted. I picked this up on a quick run through the library, pulled by the lovely cover. I didn’t realize from my quick peek at the blurb that it was a romance novel, but I don’t regret picking it up.
Mili married Virat when she was only 4 years old. 20 years later, she’s studying in American, trying to become the ideal wife so he’ll come for her. But Virat thinks their marriage was annulled years ago, and is married and expecting. Enter Samir, Virat’s brother, sent to get Mili to sign annulment papers. But before he know what happened, he’s lied about who he is and why he’s there, and he’s falling for her sweet, open-hearted beauty. How can he secure his brothers annulment and happiness without sacrificing his own?
I adored this story. Mili was quirky and sweet. Samir seemed a bit ridiculous at first, all movie star flash and charm with no substance, but he grew on me as he got more comfortable with Mili. The typical romance genre tropes and themes are there, but they’re given new life with the rich Indian culture. Mili and Samir are detailed and full characters, not just romance cut-outs, so their slow build to romance is fantastic to read. I couldn’t help grinning when I reached the end.
4.5 out of 5. Fun, sweet and complex story. As a first novel, it’s a great outing, and displays her abilities to build likeable characters and soak them in beauty and culture. I can’t wait to get my hands on her second book, The Bollywood Bride, coming out next month.
Do your read romance novels? If so, what’s your favorite? Comment below!
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