Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?
Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.
The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?
Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.
When Dimple Met Rishi is a cute contemporary read that slightly falters in its inclusion of storylines for secondary characters.
What I loved most about this novel was watching Dimple and Rishi fall for each other while coming to term with who they are as vastly different individuals. Dimple struggles with her American identity versus her Indian identity while Rishi struggles with pleasing his parents and taking on the responsibility of being the firstborn son. Dimple is modern and Rishi is traditional, so their interactions and worldviews are interesting to read about as they clash and compromise.
Where this story falters is the inclusion of the secondary characters’ storylines. Dimple’s roommate, Celia, and Rishi’s brother, Ashish, get their own plot lines with about 100 pages left in the novel. At this point, I was only interested and invested in Dimple and Rishi. I found myself skimming the pages in hopes of returning to them. The ending felt long and convoluted because of these added plot lines. Dimple and Rishi’s friendship/romance is the best part of this novel. It’s realistic, adorable, and heartfelt. I loved every second they were together. I wish Menon had focused 100% of the book on them rather than try to include the other characters.
The only other thing that bothered me was the inclusion of a talent show in the middle of a coding summer camp. I don’t understand how those two relate other than giving the characters something fun to do since watching people code an app isn’t very exciting or sexy.
Overall, When Dimple met Rishi is a fun contemporary novel that’s a good time despite the few minor flaws. I would definitely recommend it to those looking for a cute and fun read.