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’ 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 any way 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. 

Books & Reviews 📚

Books #117-#120: sucky YAs

I sometimes wonder about the lifetime of books I’ve read thus far – both good and bad. Like, have I read a thousand books or more? Maybe the number is around 800 or less? How many books I loved? For lately, it doesn’t seem that I love many. 

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Eh, that’s enough musing for now. I am having fun catching up on your blogs, but I took a little break to do a couple of books reviews. 

Book #117: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

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A story about searching for yourself, clawing your way out of the dark abyss and finally coming to terms with who you truly are and how a disability does not set us back, especially where love is concerned. It is also about believing in one’s self.

Well, that’s what it’s supposed to be about, but I wanted to read it because… LOOK AT THAT BEAUTIFUL COVER! That is cover goals to the max and I can’t resist an interracial pairing. The story (a retelling of The Little Mermaid) and characters… eh!

We have Christian, a charming womanizing playboy with a father who takes him for granted. If daddy says to jump, he’ll jump. But he is quite arrogant and cheeky and I did not warm up to him. Elyse is a Trinbagonian (the other reason I wanted to read this book is that of my island representation!) who lost her voice in an accident and heavily laid the blame on her twin sister for taking it away, although the twin (Natalie) actually saved her life. So. Ungrateful. Once, a gifted performer, she now has to take a back seat and watch as other people live the life she always dreamed of, given that she has no Plan B.

The author did not do a great job at capturing Tobago and Tobagonians. The authenticity was missing and it just did not sit well with me. If you’re going to do a book right, do your research. Aside from that, there is Sebastian “embracing and showcasing his personal truth!” I mean, come on! He’s only SIX YEARS OLD! How does a child who has an interest in chasing mermaids jump to thinking that he is in the wrong gender and wants to dress like a female? Political agenda much, Miss author? 

However, the writing was good, so 2/5.

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Book #118: I’ll Give You the Sun by  Jandy Nelson Image result for Book #118: I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

When I read the blurb for this book via Amazon, I thought I’d give it a chance, and boy did I ever regret doing so! I did not like this book. Nothing about this book was amazing. The so-call chapters were too long and it was a put-off. It tortured me until I started skimming eager to get it over and done with all the while gritting my teeth and humming Daniel Beddingfield’s ‘Gotta Get Thru This’ in my head.

I don’t like the implied Biblical references. Jude is named after a Saint, Noah (Noah and the Ark), Jude relies on Grandma Sweetwine’s ‘bible’ for advice because she probably doesn’t believe in the Holy Bible. I wish the author would’ve left God out of it. An English character cursed in a church, Jude calls God ‘Clark Gable’ because her dead boring useless Grandma used to address Him as if He is a figment of her imagination. And I thought Yash Chopra had issues with God! I disliked the blasphemy and at one point, I wonder if the author was projecting her anger onto God because she is an atheist. Not saying she is, but that’s what it felt like. Like an atheist wrote this book.

The book was slow and boring and failed to hold my attention. The dialogue was no better. Whenever Grandma Sweetwine spoke, she spoke like a child. I did not get old womanly vibes from her. AND OH, THE PROFANITIES!! Then we have this…

“Jude barfs bright blue fluorescent barf all over the table, but I’m the only one who notices.”

“I breathe in dramatically. Jude breathes in dramatically. Everyone in California, the United States, on Earth, breathes in dramatically.”

We get it! EVERYONE breathed in dramatically. Heck! Even Batman and Superman must’ve breathed in dramatically! I can’t rate this book. I’ll Give You the Nothing.

Fail

Book #119: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

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YumYums. 

Fries obsession.

Saint Bathilda, patron saint of the children.

An abandoned carousel in the woods.

Loopholes.

Loopholes.

It was fast.

It was slow.

It was in-between.

It was meh.

Like what happened to Margaret and Jenn after Jenn’s birthday party? Did Chris even like Jenn? I felt nauseated almost after every page because everyone was pigging out in this story. Adults and teenagers alike were always shoving something in their mouth.

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The story didn’t exactly knock the socks off my feet. It felt like déjà vu. Like I’ve read this story somewhere already before. The characters were mediocre, but sometimes we need them, though they did nothing for me in this story. The dialogue was rubbish and I wonder if the author has family issues.

The ending was quite disappointing. 2/5.

Book #120: Paper Towns by John Green

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The name of the novel could’ve easily been called Margo Ruth Spiegalman, the girl Quentin was pining after. Since the beginning of the story, I’ve been acquainted with the name and it was beginning to wear out by the time I reached the third chapter.

Q and Margo have two things in common: hatred/jealousy and the tendency to annoy. They set out on this night trip to take revenge on Margo’s boyfriend who was cheating on her. They participated in vandalism, breaking and entering of people’s homes and even SeaWorld. Margo is an airhead. I started speed reading soon after Part 1, but I just couldn’t finish.

There is nothing magnificently adventurous about Margo. This was a waste of ink and paper. I did not feel a connection with any characters. Q was too dense, his friends weren’t any better and Margo was too self-absorbed and selfish. Marcus AKA Radar was sort of my favorite character. His eccentric parents were pretty weird, though! They collected black Santas. Giving characters annoying quirks is not a substitute for character development. It’s plain lazy writing.

Terrible book, idiot dialogue, thin plot, no character development. I won’t read another book by this author. 

Those horrible books out of the way, let’s hope I find some treasures in the heap of books waiting to be read this summer!

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Books & Reviews 📚

Reading Diaries: The lying trend

Dear Diary,

Looks like we have to lie about this post. 😉

ebookfriendly: “ Plato #books #quote http://ebks.to/2bDkgWl ”

This is not really a rant post; rather it’s an observation one. While shopping for books on Amazon a while ago, I came across The Truth Beneath the Lies by Amanda Searcy and things took an interesting turn: there were so many titles with the word ‘lie’ or ‘lies’ in them from late last year to present and books releasing in the near future. It’s like the new trend! Remember when the word ‘girl’ was the big trend and we had titles such as Girl On A Train? 

Let’s look at some of those lying titles.

The Truth Beneath the Lies by Amanda Searcy 

This thriller came out late last year and the blurb is very intriguing for only one girl will survive at the end. I’ll pass on this book, but I hope that Kayla is the one who survives. 

Let Me Lie by Clare Mackintosh

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This book came out in March. A married couple commits suicide together because they can’t live without the other. Their daughter is not going to sit down and call it a suicide and decides to find out what really happened. But it’s like they say, some things are better left in the past. Eh, not feeling this thriller, though. I feel as if the last few pages or so are going to rob me of a terrific ending. 

All the Beautiful Lies by Peter Swanson 

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The cover is beautiful! So, Harry has always been in love with his stepmother. However, a few days before his college graduation, he gets a phone call from the stepmother and she’s the bringer of bad news: his father is dead and the police think it’s suicide. Harry goes home to Maine to help the wicked stepmother pick up the pieces. As he grows closer to her, he meets a mysterious woman and he’s drawn to her. A nice love triangle is in the making until Harry thinks that both women might be hiding secrets from him. Duh!

I’ll pass on this one as well. The characters sound shallow and I don’t want to read about lust and selfish sexual desire. Maybe the reason the father died is due to the fact that he was having an affair (with a younger woman perhaps?) and the stepmother might have something to do with his death. And I bet she has some kind of horrible past; they always do in the thrillers. *shrugging* Maybe she’s a sexual predator herself. 

The Truth and Lies of Ella Black

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Hmm… the cover is intriguing. In this YA thriller, Ella finds out that her parents are not hers so she runs during which she learns the truth about her biological parents. I’ll pass on this book because I think I’ll award it no steaming coffees. Also, someone mentioned that it contains cruel animal abuse and that’s a major turn off for me. 

Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney

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Looks like Alice falling down the rabbit hole on the cover! Amber is in a coma, her husband doesn’t love her anymore and sometimes she lies. Sounds like an engaging psychological thriller, but I get the feeling that the author used a timeline to tell the story and I dislike hopping back and forth. Amber also sounds like a whiney and needy character so I’ll be avoiding this book. 

Tell Me Lies by Carola Lovering

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The book cover alone is giving me a headache! I hope it’s changed to a better cover when the release date approaches next month. The blurb is 4 paragraphs long and it’s all about some girl named Lucy and some male named Stephen. I’m going to be honest, I did not finish read the longish blurb so I won’t be getting this book.

Here We Lie by Paula Treick DeBoard

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Friendship turns sour and many years later, one of the girls comes forward to publicly reveal what really happened that night. Hiding the truth can lead to devastating consequences, yes, but I don’t think I can read this book even if the blurb is good!

What about you? Have you read or want to read any of these books?

Books & Reviews 📚

Reading Diaries: Why I dislike YA books.

Dear Diary,

I am sick of the shallow writing and the overused tropes in YA. I think most of the writing is lazy and authors should be ashamed to call themselves writers. YA is like pop music: unoriginal, recycled and cliché. But these are my opinions.

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Definition of Young Adult (YA) Fiction: Fiction marketed towards readers ages roughly 12-18. Protagonists are often teens doing bad things.

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YA books are repetitive. The main protagonists almost always seem to have major problems and bisexuality is a recurring theme because some authors know that this is a selling trend and they abuse it. Ca-ching! If someone isn’t gay, bisexual, or a lesbian, the protagonist is suffering from sexual identity. Or their parents don’t care about them. Or someone is suffering from depression and wants to commit suicide. And these books are supposed to be for young adults! What happened to a good old Hardy Boys mystery?

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When authors are not dealing with the sexes, they’re talking about magic, fairies, zombies, witches, and vampires. The protagonists are almost always rude to their parents. Then there are the constant love triangles! It is getting old and boring now. I also dislike perfect endings given that happily ever afters is not guaranteed always. Would it hurt ya to end on a forlorn note? Or a note saying that although things didn’t look too good at the moment, the protagonist was willing to work with what she/he have?

Some of these books are dumbed down with generic plots and overplayed themes with nasty characters. The new trend in YA is feminist empowerment and I honestly can’t with these adults writing books for young adults to indulge in. I feel as if all these YA books are the same stereotypical tropes except for very few. 

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That said, I’ve enjoyed a few YA books over the years, but hey, every life has stages.

Books & Reviews 📚

Books #34-41: John Grisham rocks!

Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea

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It started off well but somehow I was robbed of a proper ending. It was rushed. 

3

Never Tell by Karen Young

Thoroughly enjoyed this book! Couldn’t put it down. One of the best books I’ve read. No, it is not new, but still, I recommend it. 

5

Theodore Boone: The Activist by John Grisham

This book is for young adults and I thoroughly enjoyed it. YA is not always about horny teenagers coming to terms with their sexuality, so kudos to Grisham for writing this story. I enjoyed learning the legal terms. Confession: at one point in my young life, I wanted to be a Lawyer. I still enjoy reading anything pertaining to the law, but it was not my calling.

Oh, and this book is part of a series so you might want to start from ‘Theodore Boone Kid Lawyer’

5

The Racketeer by John Grisham

Grisham’s law thrillers are almost predictable now, but you can’t help but want to continue reading once you get past the first page. This book was unputdownable and I enjoyed the twists and turns. 

5

Sycamore Row by John Grisham

Before Seth Hubbard hung himself, he made a last-minute crude handwritten will which would see his black maid listed to get 90% of his estate. 0% was left to his estranged family. Hubbard listed Jake Brigance to defend his will although the two have never met while Seth was alive. However, Hubbard liked what Brigance did for Carl Lee Hailey (I advise you to find/borrow/buy a copy of the book that started it all for Mr. Grisham: ‘A Time To Kill’).

I learned how boring depositions can be when contesting a will and I also learned about the validness of a handwritten will. I’m a sucker for a law novel and this one hit the right spot. Thank you, Grisham. Thank you for Mr. Brigance. 

4

A Time To Kill by John Grisham

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Of course, I had to go back to where it all started! I love me some John Brigance and I wish the writer would make a series dedicated to him. While reading, I saw Tom Cruise as Jake Brigance… maybe it’s because Cruise did a brilliant job as a lawyer in ‘The Firm’, another one of my favorite Grisham’s favorite! 

4

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7th Heaven by James Patterson

Arsonists and a public disappearance. Enjoyed the courtroom drama, but felt as if the authors could have given a little bit more. 

3

Death Penalty by William J. Coughlin

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One of the best books I’ve read in a long time! 

4

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NEXT UP:

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Beach Road by James Patterson. This is a one day read so I’ll have to get another book to read right after. 🙂

Margaret, this post was for you. Thank you for your continuous support and I am sorry that this review session was so short. ❤ ❤ Have a blessed weekend!