Author: Shobhan Bantwal
Title: The Reluctant Matchmaker
Description: The author describes her work as “Bollywood in a book.” Basically it’s a romance populated with Indian American characters. Meena’s boss Prajay hires her to help him find a wife, but she would just as soon keep him to herself.
Review source: Library Thing Early Reviewers
Plot: I’ve read plenty of romances. This is the first where the big conflict is that he’s too tall and she’s too short.
Characters: I’ll have to admit my ignorance here. This is the first book of this type that I have read. The author is part of the Indian-American community, and she writes of the Indian-American community. I don’t know if some of the idiosyncrasies of the characters are characteristics of Indian-Americans or whether they are just this author’s style. That said, these folks were really concerned with appearances (“she’d be really pretty if she dropped ten pounds”) and wealth. Usually the first thing the reader learns about a character is what kind of car he drives. And we can judge him from that, obviously.
Writing style: There were a lot of conversations that didn’t advance the plot. I’m thinking of those between the heroine and her siblings, her cousins, her parents, her co-workers…
Audience: Indian-Americans who like romances. I’m not sure that the mainstream audience is ready for these.
Wrap-up: Some of the Indian phrases scattered through the books were explained; some weren’t. I’m interested in other cultures, but this book didn’t make the Indian culture too appealing, with its materialistic judgments, its cultural judgments, etc. etc. 2.5/5*