Friday, 26 May 2017

Book Review: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

When Dimple Met RishiTitle: When Dimple Met Rishi
Author: Sandhya Menon
Series: n/a
Pages:  384
Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks
Date of Publication: 1st June, 2017
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Synopsis from Goodreads: The arranged-marriage YA romcom you didn't know you wanted or needed...

Meet Dimple.

Her main aim in life is to escape her traditional parents, get to university and begin her plan for tech world domination.

Meet Rishi.

He's rich, good-looking and a hopeless romantic. His parents think Dimple is the perfect match for him, but she's got other plans...

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.

Perfect for fans of Rainbow Rowell, Jenny Han and Nicola Yoon, WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI is a frothy, funny contemporary romance set at a coding convention in San Francisco over one exciting summer. Told from the dual perspectives of two Indian American protagonists, Dimple is fighting her family traditions while Rishi couldn't be happier to follow in the footsteps of his parents. Could sparks fly between this odd couple, or is this matchmaking attempt doomed to fail?


My Thoughts:
As soon as I heard about this book, I knew I had to read it. It sounded just up my street, and especially exciting as it's about a culture I know pretty much nothing about, tbh, apart from the stereotypes. I was also very interested to read an approach to arranged marriage that wasn't extremely negative, and I feel like I learned a lot from the protagonists, Dimple and Rishi. Even though it took me a long time to read due to exams and uni and general life stresses getting in the way of my reading, I really really enjoyed it.


Sandhya Menon really excels at writing believable and relatable characters. I really loved (or hated, when appropriate!) every one of them. Dimple and Rishi are just perfect. I loved Dimple's confidence and determination to go off and do what she wanted to do - coding - delightfully nerdy and defiant of usual gender stereotypes so woop woop - and give her all to it. Then Rishi was so nice and kind and just the perfect guy, right from the beginning, and I loved how he was so unashamed of his culture and heritage and how he defended it completely even under pressure. And his artwork! I wish I could just be friends with them both haha.


Even though their relationship gets off to a... rocky, start, shall we say, right from the beginning as the reader I was rooting for them. They fire off each other so perfectly, and then as they grow to get to know each other more they fit together so well that you just can't help but fall for them. Even though their relationship was a little predictable and I saw the twists coming, it didn't matter because it was just so cute and perfect. That's not to say that the twists didn't still rip my heart out because they did; the last 10% is like multiple punches in the heart tbh, though so don't worry about that. They still have a lot of impact!


I really liked the setting of Insomnia Con too. It was so cool to see characters being so openly nerdy and geeky - Dimple really did love coding in such an unashamed way that I've rarely seen in books or in real life, honestly. Then I loved Rishi's passion for comic book art - the sketch off at the party was one of my favourite parts of the novel. It'd be so cool if the finished copy of the book came with some illustrations (but alas I don't think that that is in the pipeline). *hint hint*


Overall, When Dimple Met Rishi is super fun and super cute and pretty much the ultimate feel-good book. It's also really informative of Indian American culture, and gives a completely different view of arranged marriage, which was really cool. I cannot recommend it enough for your summer TBR piles - it's definitely worth the purchase! 

Out next week (1st June!).



*I received this book for free from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. In no way has this affected my opinion of the novel. 

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Book Review: Girls Can't Hit by T.S. Easton

Girls Can't HitTitle: Girls Can't Hit 
Author: T.S. Easton
Series:  n/a
Pages:  288
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Date of Publication: 20th April, 2017
Source: NetGalley*
Synopsis from Goodreads: Fleur Waters never takes anything seriously - until she turns up at her local boxing club one day, just to prove a point. She's the only girl there, and the warm-up alone is exhausting . . . but the workout gives her an escape from home and school, and when she lands her first uppercut on a punching bag she feels a rare glow of satisfaction.

So she goes back the next week, determined to improve. Fleur's overprotective mum can't abide the idea of her entering a boxing ring, why won't she join her pilates class instead? Her friends don't get it either and even her boyfriend, 'Prince' George, seems concerned by her growing muscles and appetite - but it's Fleur's body, Fleur's life, so she digs her heels in and carries on with her training.


My Thoughts:
I was a big fan of Tom's earlier book, Boys Don't Knit, so I was excited to read this title. It promised to be funny and feminist, and it was both of these things. I enjoyed it a lot, and made for fun down-time reading around my essays.

Anytime someone says girls can't do something, I'm the first to jump on the bandwagon that proves they can, so this was right up my street. I loved Fleur and her friend Blossom's determination to prove the stereotype wrong, and reading their feminist rants were great fun, even if at times they came across as a little bit info-dumpy. I can forgive that though cos they do make important points, haha.

I enjoyed reading about Fleur and her boxing, and all about her exercise and training.  I've never been that interested in sports so that surprised me a lot, but since I recently started going to the gym I could empathise with Fleur's struggle at first, and it gave me hope for the future as I saw how fit she was getting (I can get there too!). I've also never really considered boxing before, never really understood why you would want to punch each other, but I can kind of see now. Still don't think it'd be for me, though ;)

I really liked the supporting characters, particularly Fleur's friends Blossom and Pip.  I loved how they went to Battle and did reenactments every week, and the fun and silliness that that caused.  I also really liked the characters who were at boxing with Fleur, and how they developed from turning their nose up at Fleur at the beginning for being a girl but they came round to actually be pretty cool by the end.  The only problem I had was Fleur's boyfriend (whose name I have already forgotten) but I'm not sure I was meant to like him much so that's alright...

Overall, Girls Can't Hit is a really enjoyable read and I definitely recommend it if you're looking for something that's a little bit different and will make you laugh, with important themes of feminism and friendship, as well as plenty of silliness!



*I received this from Hot Key Books and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  In no way has this affected my opinion of the novel. 
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