by Sandhya Menon
First sentence: “Dimple couldn’t stop smiling.”
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Content: There is talk of sex, and a tasteful on-screen sex scene. It’s in the YA section (grades 6-8) of the bookstore, but it should probably be in the Teen section (grades 9+).
Dimple has one goal: go the the Insomnia Con, win, get her app idea out in the world, and go to college and be a successful developer. Her parents (her mother, really) has one goal: to get Dimple married to an Ideal Indian Husband. Rishi has one goal: to be a Good Son, and uphold the traditions of his family and culture. Therefore, he’s asked his parents to arrange a marriage for him (yes, he’s 18). The person they’ve picked? Dimple.
Rishi goes to Insomnia Con with the sole purpose of meeting Dimple and getting their relationship going. The problem? Dimple has no idea that her parents set this up. Needless to say: Dimple and Rishi don’t get started on the best foot. But, then, over the course of the six weeks of the con, they get to know each other, bring out the best in each other, and yes, fall in love.
It’s a silly Bollywood movie as a book: light, refreshing, fun (with musical numbers!), but with a serious underside that makes you think a little. I like how Menon is exploring and subverting Indian-American culture, all the the guise of a romcom. Both Rishi and Dimple are delightful characters, and their descent into love is a quick, but believable one. I’ve enjoyed Menon’s other books, and this one is no exception.