Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Malhotra Bride by Sundari Venkatraman


The Malhotra Bride by Sundari Venkatraman






The Blurb

Sunita Rishi’s just turned twenty, having completed her graduation. She wants to fly free as a bird, explore career options and travel the world. Does she have a choice when Mamma & Pappa insist on arranging her marriage? Born in a rich business family steeped in tradition, Sunita has a tough job on her hands. Can she stop the tide? 

Tall, dark and handsome, Akshay Malhotra is the catch of the decade. The only son of Billionaire Raj Malhotra, he’s in a strange fix. His father’s keen that Akshay meets Sunita with marriage in mind. He’s too close to his parents to say ‘no’ for the preliminary meeting. And then he comes face-to-face with Sunita…. 

Will Sunita be falling from the frying pan into the fire when she agrees to become The Malhotra Bride?

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The Malhotra Bride by Sundari Venkatraman (Romance-Drama)



REVIEW

Sundari Venkatraman, has taken a leap into the self publishing world with her second novel, 'The Malhotra Bride.' When this book, landed on my Kindle, the first thing that striked me is the cover of the book. Illustrated by Mr. Prashant Kamble, this scene depicts an Indian marriage ritual being performed. A scene of 'Dilwale Dulhaniya le Jayenge' flashes in my inward eye. Got my bag of popcorn and clicked on the book in my Kindle and was soon  introduced to Sunita and Akshay.

She…


She is Sunita, a young girl from a rich business class family. Though very much loved by her family, she has one problem. She's bound by family traditions which are nothing short of male domination. [Itching to give a long lecture here, but don't want to divert from the topic :)] Sunita wants to work, but due to parental pressures, she is forced to agree to an arranged marriage. She does not take this kindly.


He…


He is Akshay Malhotra - the scion of the Malhotra family. The rich guy who is NOT a brat! He has a loving relationship with his parents, hard-working and OMG! without any vices. God! Make more like him, please. When he hears about his parent's arranging a marriage for him, he is a bit hesitant but when his dad insists he agrees to 'see'the girl.[This is another debatable topic.]


And he falls in love…


The love story…


So, the boy meets girl and falls in love. End of story :) popcorn is finished and time to go home.

But did I not tell you she wants to work and not marry. I wasn't bluffing, dear readers. When they meet for the first time, Sunita does tell Akshay that.!

Akshay is stunned. Here he was in love and this beautiful girl didn't want to marry him. So, what could a guy do? Think like a businessman that he was of course! Akshay proposes to Sunita but uh..... Not as a regular marriage proposal. You really think I'm going to tell you further than this? :)

Rating



Reasoning
Dear Sundari,


I loved your book. There were times I had an indulgent smile on my face. (I am reviewing, to hell with POV errors :)) seeing the love story unfolding between two characters who are so meant to be together and they don't know about it. There were times when I was angry with Sunita's father and clapped for Akshay's parents. There were times when Dadaji made me want to get up and hug him and the marriage rituals invoke many visualizations.

The characters are real and down to earth. The storyline is cute and straight. A love story between two characters who are meant to be.

But, what was not expected was the sudden 'attack' on Akshay. It took me a few moments to realize the sudden twist and after this twist the speed of my reading increased and I really wanted to know would he or wouldn't he.

Would I recommend this book - Definitely, with a cup of coffee, a soft music humming at the  background, this book would fit right into the mood. Uh! A bit of drizzle would be great for your visualization.... :)

And oh yes! Forgot one thing. Sundari has really has been very naughty in this book. I'm still blushing......

Meet the author

The Author's Thoughts

Even as a kid, she absolutely loved the 'lived happily ever after' syndrome as Sundari grew up reading all the fairy tales she could lay her hands on, Phantom comics, Mandrake comics and the like. It was always about good triumphing over evil and a happy end. Soon, into her teens, she switched her attention from fairy tales to Mills & Boon. While she loved reading both of these, she kept visualising what would have happened if there were similar situations happening in India; to a local hero and heroine.

Her imagination took flight and she always lived in a rosy cocoon of romance over the years. Then came the writing - a true bolt out of the blue! She could never string two sentences together. While her spoken English had always been excellent - thanks to her Grandpa - she could not write to save her life. She was bad at writing essays in both school and college. Later, when it was time to teach her kids, she could manage everything from Science to Mathematics and History & Geography.

When it came to writing compositions, her kids found her of no help at all. All this changed suddenly one fine day in the year 2000. She had just quit her job at a school's office and did not know what to do with her life. She was saturated with simply reading books. That's when she got home one evening after her walk and took some sheets of paper and began writing. It was like watching a movie that was running in her head - all those years of visualising Indian heroes and heroines needed an outlet and had to be put into words. That's how her first novel, The Malhotra Bride, took shape.

While she felt discouraged when publishing did not happen, it was her husband who kept encouraging her not to give up. There was no looking back after that. While publishing took a long time happening, Sundari continued to write novels and then short stories. Her luck turned when Indireads approached her to write for them and Double Jeopardy was born.

Then came the self-publishing on Amazon. The 2nd edition of THE MALHOTRA BRIDE has been successfully published on Amazon and is available as an ebook since February 2014. The book has been very well received by the reading public.


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