Review: When Dimple met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

About the book:

A laugh-out-loud, heartfelt YA romantic comedy, told in alternating perspectives, about two Indian-American teens whose parents have arranged for them to be married.

Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?

Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.

The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?

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.

Cover of Sandhya Menon's When Dimple met Rishi

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Review by Katy Haye:

I picked up When Dimple met Rishi after seeing it LOADS on Instagram. It sounded fun and I needed a “W” book so it hit the spot perfectly.

Let me tell you, fabulous reader, Instagram was spot on. When Dimple met Rishi is a glorious book. You might guess from the names that it’s about a couple of Indian characters – in fact they are both Indian-Americans; their parents were first generation immigrants. It’s about family and expectations and culture and being yourself and finding your path in life, and it’s funny and touching and wry and I loved it.

Dimple and Rishi make a gorgeous couple who bring out the best in each other and I fell entirely in love with both of them. The secondary characters were well-constructed so I was happy to cheer or boo for them as appropriate (as an aside, I loved the descriptor Aberzombies). The social commentary was spot-on without being heavy-handed. It was very, very real and vital.

The narrative does lose a little bit of pace towards the end when the couple are separated for a while, but it’s so entirely excellent overall I’ll forgive that.

It doesn’t happen often, but I can confidently say When Dimple met Rishi is absolutely worth the hype. Get a copy!

Katy Haye is reading (and reviewing) her way through the alphabet. Check back next week – there should be an “X” review, but since Katy has her nose stuck firmly in another “W” book right now, that might not be the case!

When not reading, Katy writes speculative YA fiction. Rising Tides has just been shortlisted for the 2017 RONE Awards.

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