Posted in Books & Reviews

Book #138: When Dimple Met Rishi

People: This book sucks socks!
Also other people: This book was the best book of the year!
Also, also other people: I was torn between giving it a 5 or a 3.
Me: I’ll make my own decision.

I read this book two months or so ago and I have to say that I am pretty disappointed with one Dimple and the plot. I’ll never stop writing honest reviews for I don’t believe in changing my opinion for anyone. I have so much to say that this might get a little lengthy.

Oohkay, let me warm up first.

Flex my fingers, adjust my computer screen, grab my coffee… Ready!

Purple and Orange Flower Girl Wedding Card

I went into this book neutral because YA rarely lives up to the hype no matter how many Book-tubers swear by the book (I’ve unsubscribed to all of their channels for they almost always have the same boring and repetitive content). I came out hating this book. Dimple was just an awful character although I liked her for the first few pages. She was a nerd and she wanted to pursue her dreams, but then she met Rishi, and in the blink of an eye, her entire character changed quicker than a chameleon changes its skin. 

She was irritating and annoying that I wanted to reach into the book and slap her silly. 

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As for Rishi, he comes from money, but he doesn’t act like it. He’s humble and obedient to his parents even when they set him up to attend Insomnia Con (kind of a party name for a tech convention don’t you think!) to court Dimple. As a matter of fact, Dimple and Rishi’s parents tricked their kids into attending the convention (although Dimple really wanted to go) so they can meet. 

Rishi draws comics and he’s great at it, but he’s keen on following his parents’s dream of him having a great future in business (I think). I love the fact that Rishi was so comfortable with his uncoolness, he was the coolest person in the room. 

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Now, let’s rant in notes as I tear the book apart.

^ I did not get a sense of San Francisco besides the fog named Karl. Yes, the fog in San Fran is called Karl and the author did a great job of reminding us. However, I did not feel transported to San Fran as I did when I read James Patterson’s Women’s Murder Club series. 

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^ I think the author should’ve translated Hindi phrases for non-Hindi readers. I understood some of it for I used to learn Hindi at one point. 

^ An obnoxious group of well-manicured people – a white girl and boy, and an Indian boy – were already trying to take pictures of one another. (Page 65) What? You mean to tell me that black people don’t live and study in San Fran?  I thought it was unnecessary to point out the color of people’s skin for it did nothing here. I would’ve gotten it had Rishi never seen white people in his life, but for some reason, it just doesn’t work here.

^ “This is how it works in the US: In the spring we’re constantly subjected to bunnies and eggs wherever we go, signifying Christ’s resurrection. Then right around October we begin to see pine trees and nativity scenes and laughing fat white men everywhere.” (Page 142). Now, this does not offend me in anyway for Easter is a pagan festival and Christmas does not signify Christ’s true birth. However, I think this paragraph was meant to be religiously controversial as Rishi said at the end that he gets to explain Hinduism. Author, stop being so foolish. If a Christian were to go to India now, they’ll be assaulted with Hinduism iconography. If the so-call Christian images are assaulting your senses, pack your bags and leave America for good. 

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^ So Dimple attends a party and drags Goody Two Shoes Rishi along with her. I can’t believe that the author wants me to believe that someone like Dimple who scorns people and social life like the plague attends parties. Just no! It doesn’t work. On the other hand, I can believe that Rishi has never been to a party before besides Diwali ones. 

^ Cue unnecessary dramatic exit: He turned and walked away, the fog swallowing him whole. (Page 353). 

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^ Where is the coding talk? The tech talk? The app talk? The whole point of Dimple attending Insomnia Con was to create a health app to help people and there was hardly any talk of it. This book was pure drivel. 

^ I am going to sound stereotypical, but this scene calls for it: Which respectful Indian boy or girl would be making out in a dark alley and when things get heated, the girl asks, “What? You mean here? We can’t do it here?” and “If you’re doing this because of some old-school concern for my ‘honor’, you don’t need to.” (Page 287). Nice going, Dimple. Really nice going. I can think of all the names in the book to call you, but then, that wouldn’t honor you, would it now?

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^ Insomnia Con is having a talent contest and Dimple wants to do a Bollywood dance. They started off with ‘Dil Na Diya’, but ended up dancing to ‘Dance Pe Chance’ from Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi

I was relieved when I came to the last page of this garbage. It would’ve been interesting to know more about the app and Dimple’s competitors’ apps as well. This story went from its focus on creating an app to a pointless talent show. With all of the ‘careful’ preparations leading up to the show, you’ll think the author would dedicate more than just a paragraph to it (Page 308). I wanted Dimple and Rishi to lose the talent show, but of course, they won for they danced to a SRK song after all. 

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This book was a total mess and you know what else is? Jab Harry Met Sejal and I am contemplating on doing a review soon. The author said that she was inspired by Bollywood movies and she passed for most Bollywood movies are a mess. This writing was cringe to the max.

The author forgot to thank Shah Rukh Khan in the acknowledgments and this book put me off so much that I don’t think From Twinkle, With Love would be redeeming… but I’mma read it anyway.

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COVER

Probably one of the most natural covers I’ve ever seen! I love that the model isn’t airbrushed and you can see all the hairs on her face. 5/5.

VERDICT:

love coffee

*** GIFs and photos used are not mine unless stated otherwise. Credit goes to Google Search. 

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Posted in Books & Reviews

Books #125-127: major disappointments👎

It’s been a while since I’ve done book reviews! I’ve been in a reading slump since June despite reading around the World Cup. It’s kind of hard for me to not read. I like being surrounded by books and it’s been fun watching my TBR go down in the past few months.

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Let’s get to those 3 books I plan on reviewing today.

Book #125: Hidden Order by Brad Thor

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This is the 12th book in the Scot Harvath series. I recall saying that this book was a 3/5 during my 3rd haul for the year and it most certainly was when I started reading it, but I won’t call this book a thriller and when I finally came to the end I had to deduct a coffee so it’s 2/5.

The book was too ‘talky’. We got a history lesson in the Federal Reserve, CIA, and Economics. I didn’t ask for thorough historical details. In one breath the author talks about the conspiracies surrounding these so-call organizations and in the next breath, he contradicts himself by calling ‘truthers’ crazy. Make up yer mind, man!

Thor takes stories from headlines and tosses his characters right in the middle of it. At times it read like a scene from the Mission: Impossible movies, but without the non-stop action.

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Five names appear on a secret list. They’re kidnapped and start showing up dead and Scot is hired to find these kidnapped people. Scot runs the investigation without even asking or trying to figure out who had access to the list. Some agent, but it’s okay for not everyone can be Ethan Hunt. And I can’t warm up to Scot Harvath. Scot is so much into Scot he’s making Cristiano Ronaldo look like a saint. Thor needs to watch Ethan Hunt for inspiration and learn how to keep his protagonist likable so we can root for him and not roll our eyes everytime his ego checks in and he’s in luck for Fallout is in theaters now. 

Book #126: Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood by Varsha Bajaj

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Why? Why was this book released?

This book targets Middle Graders. I was excited to read it because I love reading books that feature India, but it tortured me and I had to give it 2/5

Annoying 13-year-old Abby discovers that her father is a Bollywood star. Oh, excuse me, according to page 85: “is the King of Bollywood!” Shah Rukh Khan wouldn’t like that for he thinks he’s the greatest gift to women. 😆I’ll pass, though. 

But back to the book. The plot was boring and the characters weren’t too colorful themselves. Abby Tara Spencer doesn’t know her father, but when she comes into the discovery that her father is Naveen Kumar and Bollywood’s biggest movie star, her life takes a dramatic turn. Naveen finds out about her and invites her to spend time with him in Mumbai so he can get to know his daughter better. 

Almost everytime Naveen’s name is mentioned, it’s followed by the adjective “shirtless”. Abby is only 13 and is concerned about her Bollywood hunky dad being shirtless most of the time. It got quite annoying to the point where I wondered if the author had wished to have a hot shirtless Bollywood actor as a father or was Shah Rukh Khan actually Naveen in her mind?

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After reading this book, I still had no idea what the author’s purpose was for writing it. My sisters read it before me and they too were underwhelmed. Knew I should’ve watched Kuch Kuch Hota Hai for the 10th time or so and skip this book!

Book #127: The Reluctant Matchmaker by Shobhan Bantwal

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This might get lengthy for I have so much to say about this book. In every book I’ve read about Indian women, the main goal is for her to find the IIH (Ideal Indian Husband) despite age, despite her beauty, despite her future goals, and this same plot follows Meena, a 31-year-old Indian-American whose native tongue is Konkani (how beautiful!). Meena works in marketing and her job is to make Rathnaya (yes, that’s the name of the company) look good. This book was so boring and offensive in some areas that I can’t believe the great reviews it got on some sites. 

The characters are boring, the writing is okay, but the story is mediocre. And the fat shaming being sprinkled around like parmesan cheese on pasta as early as page 3: If only Pinky ate a few less candy bars, she’d be attractive. 

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And I am only getting started. Meena is a short irritating idiotic woman. She is judgemental and her mind is set on material things. Her brothers act like 7 year-olds instead of their age. Then we have the tall love interest: enter Prajay, the rich idiot who co-owns the company Meena works at. He’s looking for a wife, but he only dates women over six feet. I can’t make this up even if I tried. He enlists Meena’s help to find him a datable giant babe from an online dating site because he needed a woman’s point of view. For what? The grocery list? As co-founder of Rathnaya, Prajay comes across as unintelligent and I lose a point of IQ every time he speaks.

This book is so superficial. There are subtle remarks from one’s height to skin color and class. It was also RAMMED with every imaginable Indian cliché:

* The obsession with fair skin.

* Why Hindus shouldn’t marry outside of faith (particularly Muslim).

* Arranged marriages and talk of it.

* Blaming of the American culture for influencing their children when the parents chose to migrate there and birth them. 

Parents value of sons over daughters.

There was no need for half of those topics for the author didn’t really do anything with them. All the author did was stereotype. 

There is zero chemistry between the main characters. Meena fell in lust with Prajay and was pinning over him since accidentally bumping into him on their first encounter. She even made advances on him, but he just wasn’t feeling the shorty. There are hardly interactions on their behalf and yet, she thinks he’s the one? Give. Me. A. Break! That’s not love at all. The last chapter was a HUGE cringe. Whenever Prajay called Meena ‘baby’ the endearing term felt forced. Should’ve tried calling her ‘stupid’ for it definitely would’ve worked. My final verdict for this wannabe Bollywood mess is 1/5.

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Posted in Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

Day 12: A song from your preteen years

The soundtrack to Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters

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Only kidding! Well, back then, I loved the Backstreet Boys, discovered Depeche Mode, enjoyed 80’s music, but I’ll have to go with ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya’ from the movie Dil Se which I have not seen up to this day. Wait, was I even a preteen when this came out? Ah, well, this was one of the songs that took the globe by storm and regardless of language and regardless of the movie bombing at the Box Office, everyone knew the lyrics to this song regardless of language. 

The song was composed by A.R. Rahman, written by Gulzar, and sung by Sukhwinder Singh and Sapna Awasthi. Farah Khan was the woman behind the brilliant choreography that saw Shah Rukh Khan and Malaika Arora Khan dance on top of a moving train. Well, SRK, because according to him all the dancers were tied to the moving train except him. The choreography was stunning and as the train rolled through Tamil Nadu (southern India), one can only marvel at such beauty. 

Jinke sar ho ishq ki chaaon
Paaon ke neeche jaanat hogi
Jinke sar ho ishq ki chaaon

Chal chaiyya chaiyya chaiyya chaiyya
Chal chaiyya chaiyya chaiyya chaiyya

Posted in Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff, Entertainment

Thursday Ten: sports movies!

With the football pre-season upon us, I thought I’d feature my top 10 sports films today. 🙂

1. Jerry Maguire (American football/sports agent)

THE MOTHER OF ALL SPORTS AGENT MOVIES!! Up to this day, I haven’t been motivated to watch American football, but Tom Cruise as Jerry Maguire was…

2. Chak De! India (Hockey)

One of my top inspiring movies of all time. In reality, I don’t care for hockey, but watching this film made me understand the sport better. Shah Rukh Khan was just wonderful as Kabir Khan! He pulled off the coaching role with flair. I cheered him and the girls on throughout the film. 

srk

3. Patiala House (Cricket)

Another sport I don’t care for, although I found myself watching a match recently. It is not as exciting as my beloved football, but Akshay Kumar pulled off his cricketer role very well. This movie is not only about the love of a sport. It is about following your dreams regardless what your parents may want for you, but be respectful when you choose to thread the path.

4. Bend It Like Beckham (Football)

I like football, but I am not a fan of David Beckham. I also dislike British movies, but this one was okay because Parminder Nagra was AWESOME! Kiera Knightley is a boring actress. It’s like watching paint dry.

5. Coach Carter (Basketball)

At the time I watched this film, I thought it was very inspiring and Samuel L. Jackson murdered his coaching role. SLJ now is very unwatchable.

6. The Karate Kid (Martial Arts)

The first time I saw Jaden Smith light up the screen alongside Jackie Chan, I thought the kid had a good future as an actor. Now, I ain’t so sure, but this film is a guilty pleasure of mine. I tend to watch it whenever I come across it on the TV. Smith did a fantastic job and this movie is more than martial arts. It’s also about cultural clashes and I think the message was delivered well.

7. The Blind Side (American Football)

I ADORE THIS MOVIE! Yes, Sandra Bullock did a pretty darn good job in her role, but Quinton Aaron was the standout actor for me. He was the one who brought all the emotions alive inside me.

8. Space Jam (Basketball)

This film was a favorite of mine during my childhood. I’m all grown up now and I may not care about Bugs Bunny any longer and I might have gotten over basketball when Michael Jordon retired (I loved Chicago Bulls & I even had a backpack at one point!), but if this movie is on, I’ll sit in front of the TV and watch it. The sex appeal for Lola Bunny was inappropriately amped up though.

9. Days of Thunder (Auto Racing)

There is no need to talk about Tom Cruise’s acting chops. I watched this movie and liked it. 

10. Hawaa Hawaai (Skating)

When Bollywood gets it right, the movie never features a big name star like say, Shah Rukh Khan or erm, Aamir Khan. Nevertheless, this cast was superb and they pulled their roles off flawlessly. Inspiring film and it’s family-oriented. I’ve always admired skaters (ice skaters included) and I thoroughly enjoyed this film.

Posted in My Write 💙, Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday: A love poem

Teaser Tuesday:

Love has been in the air all morning! Well, for my characters and since I arrived at work earlier on, I’ve been itching to write a scene or two of their love story. Sitting here in my room now, I can finally get down to some lovey-dovey business! 

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Yass! Let it rain love!

At present, the story is called ‘No Boundaries‘ and it is about a deaf man finding love with the woman who lives in the apartment next to his. Cliché, I know, but it’s beautiful. I don’t have a full blurb written as yet because I keep changing the story around and I usually write my blurbs/summary last anyway. So, we have Jai who is a deaf Indian man in his early thirties and his love interest is a bubbly woman who is full of life! She was born in Romania but has American citizenship. Jai’s family wants him to settle down with a nice Indian girl and his pushy sister decides to play matchmaker because she can’t get marry until he has. Jai and Diana (that’s the girl next door and I tend to automatically call most of my female leads ‘Diana’) are not even great friends when he asks her for a favor: pretend to be his girlfriend to get his sister off his back.

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I’ll share some of that conversation next Tuesday God’s willing if I am up to it. 😛 Anywho, guess who was the inspiration behind Jai? No, not Tom Cruise, this guy…

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My sister made me watch Raees recently and although I was pleased with Shah Rukh Khan’s acting in some parts of the movie, it didn’t move me. I remember watching him in Dilwale and thinking, ‘What if SRK portrayed a character out of his element? Like a deaf one?’ (Disclaimer: I haven’t seen every single movie of SRK’s, but if he has ever portrayed a deaf or mute character, please let me know).

Many people know that Nyle DiMarco is Bae, but he was not the inspiration for my deaf character. Nonetheless, take it away, Bae!

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Nothing stops Nyle from going after what he wants. It helps that he is extremely good-looking, but he is a go-getter.

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What’s the best thing about writing this story is the fact that I am learning sign language! And this is what I love about writing. When I start something new and I have to do the research, I have so much fun discovering things that I never know I am capable of doing. Oh, I had mentioned a bit of Jai and Diana’s story last year during a challenge here: Jai & Diana

Without more blah blah blah from me, this is the poem…

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Posted in Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

Blue Sky Tag

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Maggie recently did her second Blue Sky Tag challenge. Her blog is outstanding and I love seeing new posts of hers appear in my reader. I was one of the first three tagged when I said I was in, so let’s do this.

1. Favorite and least favorite kind of weather?

Whether it’s sunny or rainy, I can’t complain.

2. Movie you watched most recently?

Finally got around to watching Shah Rukh Khan in Raees. The coolest thing in this movie was this car phone! 

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Where can I buy one? Tell me!

3. Favorite outfit?

A black skirt that I pair with almost everything. 😛

4. Best prank you’ve ever played on someone?

I don’t play pranks.

5. Worst prank someone’s ever played on you?

No one’s ever pranked me.

6. A few of your favorite songs?

Anything that comes out of Michael W. Smith’s mouth, “Heal the World” by Michael Jackson, “Ghost” by Depeche Mode and “I Want to Know What Love Is” the Tom Cruise version. He did an AMAZING job on this classic! I am an 80s baby and I approve of it. 

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7. Favorite snack food?

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8. Favorite quote/Bible verse?

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This is taken from Proverbs 18:10

9. Something you love to do?

Chill with the family, write, study the Bible and blog.

10. Favorite celebrities?

You don’t even have to ask. 🙂

11. Two of your favorite blog posts?

I’m not too sure if this question is referring to blogs I follow or my blog, but here’s one which I did recently:

10 fun things about Aladdin

This was fun! 🙂 

My questions (I’ll try my utmost best to make them fun!):

1. Have you ever danced in the rain?

2. Do you trust anyone with your life?

3. Your favorite ice cream flavor?

4. Favorite book in the Bible?

5. If you could travel anywhere right now, where would you go and why?

6. Your all-time favorite book?

7. If you could live/work in any TV home/office, what would it be?

8. Cake or pie?

9. Your favorite day of the week?

10. A product that you love so much that you’d happily be the company’s spokesperson?

11. What would you name your boat if you had one?

I consider this open. If you’re interested in doing this tag, feel free to do so and say that I tagged you. Thank you for reading. 🙂

*** Images via Google Search

Posted in Entertainment

Oui! Tom Cruise will run in Paris!

Maybe he’ll climb the Eiffel Tower and jump off it. Maybe he’ll tackle the Arc de Triomphe or the famous Louvre or the Notre Dame… whatever! Tom Cruise would be shooting scenes for MI6 in Paris and they should get him to run along the Champs-Élysées. The Latin Quarter would make a great shot too.

The sixth and perhaps final installment of the Mission Impossible franchise would see Tom Crusie and company globetrot a bit with Paris, London, New Zealand, and India on the itinerary. Unfortunately, Jeremy Renner won’t be back because his dates are clashing with Avengers: Infinity War, something I don’t care for, but I’ll miss his presence. He was funny and the voice of reason.

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India is another destination I am excited for. I think Cruise and McQuarrie should consider asking Shah Rukh Khan to make an appearance to give it a sultrier appeal or Ranveer Singh seeing that he is Bollywood’s future heir or even Hrithik Roshan so he can learn how to perform better action stunts from the world’s greatest action star. 

STUNTING

Tom Cruise made stunt history in Rogue Nation for hanging off a plane and holding his breath under water for 6 minutes and I remember thinking that he isn’t going to top that, but McQuarrie recently revealed that the actor has spent the past year training for a single MI6 stunt. Is he going to finally fly without restraint? Kidding. Kidding! Hmmm… I wonder if it involves the Eiffel Tower or the Big Ben or maybe the Taj Mahal? 

MI6 starts shooting in April and already has a release date for July 27, 2018.

Tom Cruise