Okay, so I am a writer. Or rather, I should say, a writer in training, because there still seems to be such a lot that I have to learn. I still have to learn the difference between a novel and a novella for instance and other stuff like that.
And so I blithely sat down with a cup of tea and prepared to enjoy Sundari Vekatraman’s book ‘The Smitten Husband’. About an hour and a half later, I ping her, “I finished the book!”
“And I want more!”
“It’s a novella!” she pings back adding a smiley.
And a “novella” it is! Short and yet complete!
And since it is a novella, I am going to write my review as a listicle. (I’m just showing off the new terms I’ve learnt recently 😛 )
- I think most women in India (age no bar) will be able to relate to Sapna, the heroine, who keeps dreaming of a Prince Charming who will come and bowl her over, in a most dramatic way, “not introduced by an astrologer.”
- Most of us who have been part of the arranged marriage scenario will also relate to the falling in love with your husband as you get to know him. (Remember that Tanishq platimum rings ad? Your day of love?)
- I read the story twice. Once, just for the pleasure of it; and the second time, to seriously review it. And guess what? I enjoyed it thoroughly both times!
- Sundari’s characters are as usual complex. Ram, the hero, as obedient a son as his namesake in some matters and stubborn as hell in others. Traditional enough to agree to an arranged marriage, yet modern enough to understand that his wife has an identity of her own and to respect it.
- Sapna is today’s woman. Though from a small town and not educated beyond school, she has the gumption to stand up to her husband and is not in awe of his wealth or standing in society.
- The story has Sundari’s signature moments of mischief thrown in which make for enjoyable reading.
- The romance is as usual effortless and real. The writing doesn’t seem in the least bit forced or too thought over. I really wonder how she does it. I wonder if she’ll teach me to write those scenes like that! I always have a problem writing love scenes 😦
- What I was not comfortable with was the matching of horoscopes in the story; maybe because it is something I am personally against. I just feel that in a book like this it sends a message that matching horoscopes work. It seems a little regressive.
- Another thing is the fact that Sapna’s parent had aborted three daughters after Sapna was born. Yet they were a very decent highly respected family. Some thing goes against the grain here. I understand that the author probably brought this fact in to use it as a social message when the mother sees it as a reason for why they are in such a terrible situation.
But all said and done, I really loved it! I just wished it was more! I wanted more of Ram, more of Sapna, more of their interaction, with each other, their families. I just wanted more!
I can’t wait to read the next in the Marriages made in India series, “His Drunken Wife!”
Ram Maheshwari is a successful jewellery designer who has a huge showroom on MI Road, Jaipur. He’s tall, dark, handsome and a billionaire to boot. He’s twenty-nine and falls in with his parents’ wishes when they try to arrange his marriage.
The lovely, stormy-eyed Sapna Purohit is from Pushkar. She’s managed to finish school and makes a living by doing mehendi designs during weddings. She’s always dreamt of a Prince on a white horse, sweeping her off her feet.
One look into Sapna’s grey eyes and Ram is lost. Only, Sapna’s unable to see her Prince in Ram. Being from a poor family, she has no choice but to go along with the tide when the Maheshwaris offer to bear all expenses of the wedding.
Does that mean that the feisty Sapna is all set to accept Ram as her husband? She puts forth a condition, after the wedding. Will The Smitten Husband agree to it?
*MARRIAGES MADE IN INDIA is a five-novella series that revolves around the characters you have met in The Runaway Bridegroom.
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About the Author
The Smitten Husband is the eighth book authored by Sundari Venkatraman. This is a hot romance and is Book #1 of the 5-novella series titled Marriages Made in India. Other published novels by the author are The Malhotra Bride, Meghna, The Runaway Bridegroom, The Madras Affair and An Autograph for Anjali—all romances. She also has a collection of romantic short stories called Matches Made in Heaven; and a collection of human interest stories called Tales of Sunshine. All of Sundari Venkatraman’s books have been on Amazon Top 100 Bestsellers in India, USA, UK & Australia many times over.
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