Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev

A Bollywood Affair

By Sonali Dev

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Published by: Kensington Books - October 28, 2014
Genres: Literature/Women's Fiction, Romance, Indian Culture
Rating: 4 Stars

NOTICE: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Mili Rathod hasn’t seen her husband in twenty years—not since she was promised to him at the age of four. Yet marriage has allowed Mili a freedom rarely given to girls in her village. Her grandmother has even allowed her to leave India and study in America for eight months, all to make her the perfect modern wife. Which is exactly what Mili longs to be—if her husband would just come and claim her.

Bollywood’s favorite director, Samir Rathod, has come to Michigan to secure a divorce for his older brother. Persuading a na├»ve village girl to sign the papers should be easy for someone with Samir’s tabloid-famous charm. But Mili is neither a fool nor a gold-digger. Open-hearted yet complex, she’s trying to reconcile her independence with cherished traditions. And before he can stop himself, Samir is immersed in Mili’s life—cooking her dal and rotis, escorting her to her roommate’s elaborate Indian wedding, and wondering where his loyalties and happiness lie.

In a culture where old world traditions die hard lies the delicate line between dutiful love and willful love. A Bollywood Affair is smack dab on that line.

This is a delicate love story in which two people who shouldn't love each other grow to do just that.

Mili longs to be the perfect wife to the husband she only met at four-years-old. Perhaps he will come for her if she's educated. She travels to America to complete a year of studies longing to return to India and be the wife Virat deserves. She's convinced herself that she loves Virat because she must love her husband. It's something she accepts. But, while she is not one to break cultural traditions for herself, she readily agrees to help her roommate elope with her Indian lover. He's from the wrong side of India and her parents will not allow them to marry. Mili is determined to help them and protect the love they so obviously feel for one another; she just doesn't believe there is a love out there for someone like herself.

Samir Rathod is Mili's brother-in-law. He travels to America to get Mili to sign papers annulling her childhood marriage to his brother Virat. Virat has remarried and has a child on the way. When he's in a terrible accident and lying in a coma, Samir knows he must secure a future for Virat's wife Rima in case Virat does not survive. As it stands, Mili, his childhood pride, stands to inherit everything.

Samir plans to march right up to Mili and demand her signature, but something unexpected happens. Mili ends up injuring herself and with no friends or family to care for her, Samir finds himself volunteering for that duty.

Prior to coming to America, Samir is supposed to be writing his next block-buster movie script but the words don't come. Once he steps inside Mili's apartment, and her life, they flow like crazy.

As the two become closer, the reader knows that Samir's secret must be revealed. It may change everything.

I loved this book and can't wait to read more from this author. The only thing I wanted that was missing was to know the re-written plot of Samir's movie. He spoke of changing it after meeting Mili and their discussions about how his usual dark romances should be lighter and freer. It would've been neat to know if he included a bit of their courtship in the script.

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