Winnie Mehta was never really convinced that Raj was her soulmate, but their love was written in the stars. Literally, a pandit predicted Winnie would find the love of her life before her 18th birthday, and Raj meets all of the qualifications. Which is why Winnie is shocked to return from her summer at film camp to find her boyfriend of three years hooking up with Jenny Dickens. Worse, Raj is crowned chair of the student film festival, a spot Winnie was counting on for her film school applications. As a self-proclaimed Bollywood expert, Winnie knows this is not how her perfect ending is scripted.
Then there’s Dev, a fellow film geek, and one of the few people Winnie can count on to help her reclaim control of her story. Dev is smart, charming, and challenges Winnie to look beyond her horoscope to find someone she’d pick for herself. But does falling for Dev mean giving up on her prophecy, and her chance to live happily ever after? To get her Bollywood-like life on track, Winnie will need a little bit of help from fate, family, and of course, a Bollywood movie star.
Title : My So-Called Bollywood Life
Author : Nisha Sharma
Format : Paperback
Page Count : 332
Genre : YA contemporary
Publisher : Stripes Books
Release Date : 2 May 2019
Reviewer : Micky
Rating : ★ ★ ★ ★ .5
Micky’s 4.5 star review
What a delightful, fun, escapist read this unusual YA was. It was completely unexpected in nature and plot line, fairly low in terms of teenage angst and it made me smile while reading many times.
I know only a little about Bollywood films but through the protagonist Winnie, I learnt just a little more and came to love her love for it. Winnie finds herself in a break up situation in her final year of high school, with a new low-key love interest and uses her savant-ish knowledge of bollywood films to guide her direction.
The sense of family in this story was full and fun. Nani, her mum and dad were in the background but powerful in wanting to steer Winnie alongside her astrological predictions.
Raj her ex and Dev her want-to-be, were hilarious to read about; I knew where my wishes swayed towards from early on. The friendship circles were both interesting and complex with some strained loyalties. The story had a feminist underpinning which I appreciated and Winnie was empowered as a young women by her family and school.
“I don’t understand why you love the singing and dancing and Bollywood drama…but Winnie Mehta, I would dance for you.”
There’s so much to this story, much more than just a great romantic storyline. Whilst I’m not from the Indian community in the US, I felt this was relatable with a strong coming-of-age theme that will appeal widely.
The cover for this book is one of my favourites this year and the words inside match beautifully. I will love seeing this book on my shelf and I would definitely re-read it. MY SO-CALLED BOLLYWOOD LIFE is a fun, own-voices and diverse read and I highly recommend it.
Thank you @nishawrites for these words, @stripesbooks @darkroomtours and @hatecopy for the fabulous cover.