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When Dimple Met Rishi

Review

When Dimple Met Rishi

WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI is a sweet romance story --- though not at first. When Dimple Shah heads off to a summer web development program before her freshman year of college, she is only concerned with winning the competition, her app for the program already laid out in her head. She certainly doesn’t expect to meet Rishi Patel, who tells her that her attendance at the program --- and his --- is a larger scheme set up by their parents, in the hopes of their children falling in love at the program.

"Menon writes with a comfortable ease and a wealth of detail....WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI is a sweet and humorous story that isn’t just a romance, but also a coming-of age-story...."

Naturally, Dimple is furious. This sounds exactly like something that her scheming mother would set up, as she encourages Dimple to look at college and higher education as a bridge into marriage, the place to meet the “Ideal Indian Husband.” When Dimple refuses to give Rishi a chance, he’s crushed: knowing their parents’ plan all along, he was hoping that Dimple would be the partner in marriage that one hopes for: reliable, committed, with maybe a little bit of love on the side.

However, as the summer program continues, Dimple and Rishi find themselves unwittingly spending more time together, time that could perhaps hint at (maybe) a possible romance --- but only if they can figure out how to get along first.

Sandhya Menon writes a lighthearted book perfect for the summer months, due both in part to the subject matter and the writing style. The chapters are saturated with witty humor and sarcasm, and the reader will find themselves smiling --- and perhaps even laughing --- at the attitude that springs off the pages, especially in Dimple’s chapters. Menon writes the book in a very casual, conversational style, so the story reads quickly and feels light. The alternating narration by Dimple and Rishi is done very well, and it is nice to see the chapters casually switch between narrators, sometimes right in the middle of a conversation, as it really gives the reader a clear idea of the characters’ personalities and adds to the casual atmosphere of the book. Each of the characters are well-developed, so that the reader can clearly see the differences between Dimple and Rishi, while the side characters add humor to the story (especially Dimple’s mother).

Menon writes with a comfortable ease and a wealth of detail that suggests that parts of the story and the characters may come from personal experience. While the plot feels, for the most part, evenly-paced, it would have been nice to see more of the work involved in Dimple and Rishi developing their app for the competition, especially because this is the main focus of Dimple’s opening chapters, yet it disappears in the middle of the story. Though it is important to allow the romance to take center stage, the reader starts to lose the continuity between the beginning and middle of the story without the backbone of the summer program. Overall, however, WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI is a sweet and humorous story that isn’t just a romance, but also a coming-of age-story as well, as both Dimple and Rishi learn important lessons about priorities, love, family and responsibility.

Reviewed by Rachel R., Teen Board Member on June 29, 2017

When Dimple Met Rishi
by Sandhya Menon