During my first year in my MFA program, I read almost entirely nonfiction–even for my leisure reading. I wanted to focus in my genre and tally off names for my list of “influences” for my thesis. But once summer hit, I found I was burnt out on reality and wanted to fall back on the favorite genre of my youth: YA romances. Since everyone on Book Riot has been excited and eager for the release of Sandhya Menon’s When Dimple Met Rishi, I sought it out as soon as pub day came around.
Plus, the cover is just fantastic! Iced coffee should be on all book covers here on out, in my opinion.
This book was a ton of fun! I loved seeing the idea of arranged marriage explored here as Dimple ends up falling for the guy her parents picked, even if she doesn’t want to. It was also very refreshing to see that the head-over-heels romantic character was our leading man, not our leading lady, and the alternating perspectives really helped drive that home and flesh out both characters in all their complexity.
The driving force behind the plot, aside from the love plot of course, felt believable and essential, and I loved seeing how Dimple and Rishi encouraged one another’s dreams–there’s more to this relationship than just the swoons. And that’s a good thing, because cynical adult Amanda has a harder time feeling super excited for teenagers who’re falling in love. The cynical voice within doesn’t really buy “happily ever after” for college freshmen, even though of course it’s perfectly possible (I even know some people who were dating freshmen year of college and totally ended up married–I just wasn’t one of them!)
There’s some airport scene stuff that seems a little confusing towards the end (anything that happens easily in an airport is suspect to me, and finding someone in one when you think they’re departing seems near impossible without a ticket on their flight), but otherwise I found the plot and characters compelling and believable. I don’t have that much to say about this one because a) I pretty much just loved it and b) I’ve been sick and listening to it while on Sudafed.
In conclusion, highly recommend to anyone who loves a good love story!