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The Runaway Bridegroom by Sundari Venkatraman
The runaway bridegroom by Sundari Venkatraman has an intriguing title and an equally intriguing theme – child marriage – which even in this day and age is, sadly, a socially relevant issue in India.
I liked the beginning that Sundari has etched. The plight of the girl is gut wrenching without overt emphasis on description. I was pulled in by the revulsion I felt for the situation. Chanda is the victim of a social evil and her counterpart doesn’t escape the brunt of the situation either.
As I read on, I found the theme of the book becoming buried in subplots and secondary characters which, due to the short length of the work, one couldn’t find so relatable.
Sundari’s descriptions are vivid and the story doesn’t pause anywhere. She takes up right into the minds of people very set in their beliefs – for example, a detective basing his investigation on astrological predictions. However, the satire due here was missing. The one thing I couldn’t get over was that the culprits, the parents who instigate such evils, escape unscathed and in fact are upheld as understanding and supportive even. The characters don’t take a leap against the society norms for their love. Maybe my expectation of the story was different. I mean, the author does say she writes only to entertain. But I kept expecting a stand on this issue which is so relevant to Indian society. I was disappointed that I didn’t find it.
I give this book three stars.
Read it for Indian setting and a light read that makes no statements.
I was given a copy of the book in return for an honest, unbiased review.
Sanya doesn’t just have trouble, she has double trouble. Twins Arth and Ansh Sharma, are rich, sexy and sinfully handsome – what’s a girl to do?
Sanya last saw the twins when she was ten years old. Now, all grown up, she has come looking for gentle Arth, the twin she has loved ever since she can remember. But instead, she is confronted with fiery Ansh, who is hell-bent on seducing her. And what’s worse, she can’t seem to stop herself from responding to him.
As she chases Arth and is chased by Ansh, Sanya finds herself on a crazy roller coaster ride with no way of getting off. How will she deal with these two very different men in her life? Will she be able to convince one twin that she loves the other?
First the title. I congratulate Sundari on it. It is very intriguing and makes you want to pick up this book.
As in the blurb the story revolves around Sanya’s predicament about two men she knew as boys while growing up. The differing feelings in the past and present have been explored and Sanya is given her perfect ending in the conclusion.
What I liked most about the book is Sundari’s writing. She has a way of wanting you to read more so that you don’t feel that the story is being thrust upon you.
The short length is a drawback because the characters come out too simplistic. The author has wisely desisted from introducing any other conflict between characters. But conversely that makes the characters miss the depth they could have had. I felt too that the epilogue type ending could have been used to add more words to the story.
Throughout, the story stays loyal to its theme. At the end, it comes out a little idealistic as though it’s the author’s depiction of what should or could be the approach of modern India towards the issues discussed. I don’t mean this as a criticism though.
I rate it four stars out of five for readability, three for plot, and three and a half for my takeaway impression. Looking to read more from this author.
Read it for Sundari’s lovely flowing writing and clean cut descriptions.