When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon is a Perfect Ten!

Menon, Sandhya. When Dimple Met Rishi. Simon Pulse, 2017. 384p. $17.99. 978-1-4814-7868-7. 5Q 5P J S

Dimple Shah is so excited to attend the summer web development conference Insomnia Con that she is not even suspicious when her parents are equally keen for her to go. When Rishi Patel walks up to her and jokingly says, “Hello, future wife,” the only thing Dimple can do is dump her iced coffee on him. It turns out that both Dimple and Rishi’s parents have been hoping love would spark between the two teens for a long time. After their “meet cute” gone awry, they begrudgingly get to know each other, even though both are focused on their own futures.  The more they hang out, the less romance seems like a bad idea …

Menon weaves a vibrant, joyous, funny love story between two smart, strong, sexy, funny, wonderful people who happen to be first-generation Indian American. Dimple and Rishi resist, but it is clear, virtually from the start, that this is a perfect match. They are pure equals, and each bolsters the other. Menon does not fall into any stereotypical traps—no lame, interfering third parties, no stupid misunderstandings. Conflicts arise naturally; Dimple and Rishi are perfectly able to think through them and come up with solutions, on their own and as a team. Some readers may dislike that Dimple and Rishi decide to have sex (with special emphasis on the word “decide”) but it is handled beautifully and movingly. Menon is firmly in Jane Austen territory here and proves superbly adept at handling her characters’—and readers’—hearts.—Matthew Weaver.

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