Title: The Bollywood Bride
Author: Sonali Dev
Source: Review copy from publisher
Ria Parkar is Bollywood's favorite Ice Princess--beautiful, poised, and scandal-proof--until one impulsive act threatens to expose her destructive past. Traveling home to Chicago for her cousin's wedding offers a chance to diffuse the coming media storm and find solace in family, food, and outsized celebrations that are like one of her vibrant movies come to life. But it also means confronting Vikram Jathar.
Ria and Vikram spent childhood summers together, a world away from Ria's exclusive boarding school in Mumbai. Their friendship grew seamlessly into love--until Ria made a shattering decision. As far as Vikram is concerned, Ria sold her soul for stardom and it's taken him years to rebuild his life. But beneath his pent-up anger, their bond remains unchanged. And now, among those who know her best, Ria may find the courage to face the secrets she's been guarding for everyone else's benefit--and a chance to stop acting and start living.
Rich with details of modern Indian-American life, here is a warm, sexy, and witty story of love, family, and the difficult choices that arise in the name of both.
One of my favorite books last year was A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev. Dev really surprised me with her debut; since finishing it I’ve been waiting for her next book. Now that I have finished her second book, The Bollywood Bride, I can say the wait was more than worth it. The Bollywood Bride was everything I was expecting it to be a more.
I will not go into detail about the story itself because the blurb tells pretty well what The Bollywood Bride book is about. The Bollywood Bride differs from A Bollywood Affair by being darker and having a lot more of angst. I usually against angsty stories, but Dev knows how to do angst well, really well. She does the angst that hurts, but you can’t help but keep going because you are dying to know what is coming next, you are dying to know how everything is going to be resolved, and at the end, when that moment finally come, it’s bliss, pure utterly bliss.
Dev’s writing is beautiful and evocative; with her words she not only gives life to her characters, but also to the setting. This made it easy to connect with the characters, to feel what they were feeling and to experience what they were going through and let me tell you, there were a lot of feelings here and not all of them were rosy. Denali brings to light a very serious topic like is mental illness; she shows us the social stigma that it carries and how -even at this modern times- it’s perceive in society.
Denali succeeds in capturing the Indian culture in its entire splendor. Reading one of her books feels like visiting close friends, where you feel comfortable and welcome. Her imagery is so vivid and realistic I only needed to close my eyes to be transported to the scene. I could see the vibrant colors and smell the spices of the food. Talking about food, reading The Bollywood Bride will make you hungry, I promise you, by the end you will be craving curries, samosas, sambar, chutneys, idlis and more.
The Bollywood Bride is a story about second chances, about finding the love of your life and fighting for it. It’s a book about acceptance, about the power of love and the sacrifices we are willing to do to protect those we love. The Bollywood Bride is a little gem I highly recommend.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws
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