“This is our life. We get to decide the rules. We get to say what goes and what stays, what matters and what doesn’t.”
I was excited to read this because I usually don’t read that many contemporary books, but I wanted to give this a try as it was diverse and had a strong female, Indian-American lead.I am all for the representation of more cultures in popular books and that is why I really wanted to love this, but sadly I was disappointed with the execution of it.
The book follows the two main characters , Dimple Shah and Rishi Patel, who are both Indian-American and both struggle with their role between conserving their parent’s cultural traditions, while integrating their american culture. Dimple is very career driven and an ardent academic.She has her heart set on going to Stanford to become a web developer,however her mother sees college as an opportunity to met a potential husband- more specifically the “Ideal Indian Husband “.
Dimple convinces her parents to let her attend a web developing program, Insomnia Con, and they have agreed .Dimple sees this as a sign that they are finally taking her career seriously. Her parents however, have furtively set up an arranged marriage with Rishi’s parents. Unbeknownst to her, this program is actually for her to meet and get to know her “future” husband. Rishi on the other hand is aware of the arrangement and is in fact excited to meet his “future wife.” He is described as a very obedient and loyal son who never goes against his parent’s wishes.When Dimple arrives at Insomnia Con, Rishi approaches her and she exasperatedly realizes her parent’s motive. Dimple makes it very clear to both Rishi and her family that she is not getting married, and that her career comes first. She then avoids Rishi ( and basically treats him like garbage ) in the beginning. They are eventually paired up together to work on their final assignment, which is to create their own App. During the time that they worked together, Dimple slowly realizes that Rishi isn’t as bad as she thought and they can actually relate to a lot of things, especially being both Indian -American. They grow closer together during this time and much to Dimple’s surprise a fluttering romance ensues.
I really ( REALLY!) wanted to love this book. Don’t get me wrong, it had some great moments , in fact I was actually loving the first few chapters- it was funny, quirky and had a propitious arc. However midway through, the flow became tedious. The main plot of the book is about Dimple attending a web developing program that she’s dreamed about doing and then once she gets there and meets Rishi ,we barely hear about said program for the rest of the book ( what happened there and where did the main plot disappear to?!). Instead we read about them preparing for a talent show that has nothing to do with web designing and coding. The story line basically ends up being completely consumed by the romance of Dimple and Rishi- and at times the relationship felt forced. I just didn’t feel that natural flow of passion between the two, or a steady build up to the romance ( they were missing all of the feels!).Rishi was adorable and my favourite character in the book, unfortunately I couldn’t say the same about Dimple. I just could not click with Dimple’s Character and maybe that was one of the reasons why this book fell short for me.
It wasn’t an awful book, it was still a good read .It’s just that I had higher expectations for When Dimple Met Rishi.If predictable rom-coms are your thing ,then maybe you will enjoy it.I felt like this book had so much potential to be great, but there were just too many gaps in the plot. I would still give the author another try and read another book by Sandyha Menon, hopefully I can enjoy the others more.
I hop you enjoyed When Dimple Met Rishi more than I did!