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A Bollywood Affair [Kindle Edition]

Sonali Dev
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)

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Book Description

“Deeply-felt emotions that will keep readers turning the pages.” --Susan Elizabeth Phillips, New York Times bestselling author

Mili Rathod hasn’t seen her husband in twenty years—not since she was promised to him at the age of four. Yet marriage has allowed Mili a freedom rarely given to girls in her village. Her grandmother has even allowed her to leave India and study in America for eight months, all to make her the perfect modern wife. Which is exactly what Mili longs to be—if her husband would just come and claim her.

Bollywood’s favorite director, Samir Rathod, has come to Michigan to secure a divorce for his older brother. Persuading a naïve village girl to sign the papers should be easy for someone with Samir’s tabloid-famous charm. But Mili is neither a fool nor a gold-digger. Open-hearted yet complex, she’s trying to reconcile her independence with cherished traditions. And before he can stop himself, Samir is immersed in Mili’s life—cooking her dal and rotis, escorting her to her roommate’s elaborate Indian wedding, and wondering where his loyalties and happiness lie.

Heartfelt, witty, and thoroughly engaging, Sonali Dev’s debut is both a vivid exploration of modern India and a deeply honest story of love, in all its diversity.

“A delightful debut packed with complex characters and deep emotions.” —Shobhan Bantwal, author of The Dowry Bride

“Sonali Dev not only entertains but provides new insight into the human condition. A must-read.” --Mingmei Yip, author of Peach Blossom Pavilion

Editorial Reviews


"A Bollywood Affair is an impressive debut ...Vibrant and exuberantly romantic, Affair is chock full of details that reflect India's social and cultural flux." -

"Debut author Sonali Dev writes a beautiful love story in A Bollywood Affair... One of the best romances I've read this year." - USAToday

"Dev's heartfelt debut novel is rich in scenes and images illuminating Indian culture, leaving readers with a greater understanding and appreciation of Indian traditions while beautifully capturing the struggle between familial duty and self-discovery." - Booklist

"This tasty Indian American confection will satisfy readers of any age who would enjoy a contemporary, transcontinental romance told with a light touch and lots of sizzle." - LibraryJournal

"Based on this marvelous debut, Dev is set to become a star. An Absolute winner from begining to end, this spellbinding tale grabs your heart and never lets go!" - RT BookReviews

"Deeply-felt emotions that will keep readers turning the pages. A Bollywood Affair has it all." --Susan Elizabeth Phillips,  NYT Bestseller

"Deeply romantic and emotional, with characters I fell in love with, A Bollywood Affair is simply unputdownable." -Nalini Singh, NYT Bestseller

"A Bollywood Affair was one of the best books I've read this entire year. The characters are so richly drawn, the writing is utterly breathtaking." - Kristan Higgins, NYT Bestseller 

"A delightful debut packed with complex characters, deep emotions and just the right touch of humor." -Shobhan Bantwal

"As intricate as a henna tattoo and as sweet as gulab jamun
...With a setup as far-fetched and irresistible as that of a classic Bollywood musical, this witty confection is sure to delight." - ShelfAwareness

About the Author

Sonali Dev has published several articles on art, architecture, and movies in the Indian Architect and Builder magazine. She was also an assistant editor at Architectural Journal in Mumbai, India. She coordinates Windy City Romance Writers' of America Four Seasons romance writing contest. Sonali lives in Chicago.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1002 KB
  • Print Length: 305 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1617730130
  • Publisher: Kensington Books (October 28, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00JVW6GQ0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,327 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful thought provoking book November 10, 2014
By Bj Cox
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There is nothing like the joy of reading a five star book and finding the words to share it with other readers. Mili Rathod could easily have been a Mary Sue, one of those good girls it is hard to relate to. Instead Ms. Dev has given us a heroine that is innocent, good to the bone, concerned for the welfare of others and trying to make a difference in her world. Mili was married at four years old to Virat Rathod. Mili's grandmother had raised her daughter and married her off when she lost her daughter and son-in-law and had to raise their daughter. She scraped together a dowry for Virat's grandfather and waited for them to take Mili. Virat joined the Air Force and annulled the marriage, but the grandfather stopped the paperwork and continued to run through all Mili's assets. At 24, she was still waiting for her husband to come get her while educating and preparing herself to be an officer's wife. She get a chance to study in the US and sells her dowry jewels to buy her plane ticket. She lives in a ghetto and washes dishes in a Chinese restaurant to make money to send to her grandmother.

Sounds depressing, but it is not. Mili is full of laughter and has accepted her lot in life. She is still trying to prove she is worthy of affection. Her room mate is a drama queen who is about to elope because her family wants her to marry a cardiologist and she is in love with a computer programmer grad student. Meantime, the grandmother has taken matters in her own hands and files a lawsuit to get her grandaughter a legal share of Virat's grandfather's estate and force him to come and get her. His wife is pregnant and his plane crashes. Virat learns that the marriage is legal and he will have to get an annulment to keep his upcomming child legitimate.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
What a fantastic debut romance! It was my first by an Indian author and I had so much fun reading the story Ms Dev has so skillfully created.

It is a lovely romance, full of passion and drama, colourful and funny and devastatingly sad at time, just like a typical Bollywood movie. And I do love watching Bollywood movies occasionally, they never fail to put me in a good mood and to leave me with a silly happy smile on my face. A Bollywood Affair did just that!

The story is set both in India and USA and follows Milli, village girl from India, once a child bride and now a young woman in search of her happiness and freedom. And she finds everything she has been looking for in Samir, a young successful Bollywood director and brother to her child husband. Now all this makes for one very messy, very sweet and very funny love story.

The story is told from dual POV - Milli and Samir - they were both fantastic characters. They had great chemistry, a slowly growing romance and heaps of funny moments.

The supporting cast was also very entertaining to read and they added to the creation of a very vibrant story. I loved the complex and detailed presentation of Indian culture. The references to Bollywood, the idiomatic phrases, the food references were abundant and although I'm not very familiar with Indian culture, I didn't find them confusing. On the contrary, I felt that they added authenticity to the story and made all the more intimate and real.

The author included some current social issues - poverty, arranged (underage) marriages, women's education and rights. They were subtly woven into the text and balanced out nicely the lighter elements in the story. It is a love story at heart, one about the nature of love, the meaning and importance of family.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Over-the-top Bollywood-style romance November 7, 2014
A Bollywood Affair was an interesting read. I loved the idea of the book, but the execution was slightly lacking for me.

For a Westerner, the idea behind this story is fascinating. Mili was married at the age of four, and even though such child marriages are illegal, she has always considered herself to be a wife, even though she has no memory of her husband. Her husband, however, believes that the marriage was dissolved and has married again. When he learns that the marriage has not been officially set aside, he asks his younger brother, Samir, a Bollywood writer/director, to get Mili to sign the paperwork to end their marriage. When Samir meets Mili, sparks fly, and he is able to overcome the writer’s block that has kept him from completing his latest script. In order to keep writing and to keep from destroying his growing relationship with Mili, he hides the truth of who he is from her. When the truth finally comes out, Mili has to decide whether she can ever trust Samir again.

I loved getting a glimpse into Indian culture in this book—that’s one of its biggest selling points. The main characters, Mili and Samir, are also a strong point of the novel. Mili is strong character, determined to better herself in spite of her humble background and to do the right thing by her husband; she’s also quite funny at times. Samir is less immediately admirable, since he deceives Mili. However, since his actions are in part inspired by the strong allegiance to his mother and brother he feels after suffering from abuse at the hands of others as a child and also by his genuine feelings for Mili, they are understandable.

The weak aspect of the novel for me was the over-the-top nature of almost everything in the story.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my Fav books of the year!
A Bollywood Affair is hands down one of my favourite adult romances of the year. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it from start to finish and even after that I found myself re-reading. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Lisa @ Fic Talk
4.0 out of 5 stars Like watching old-skool Bollywood romance with upated, modern, Western...
Somehow Sonali Dev has taken the experience of watching traditional, old-skool Bollywood films and distilled it into a book with modern sensibilities in regards to romantic sex and... Read more
Published 2 days ago by kbirdlincoln
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Interesting and a different story line.
Published 3 days ago by Abida Brawley
4.0 out of 5 stars While this novel was fairly lightweight and predictable, it ...
While this novel was fairly lightweight and predictable, it was still an enjoyable read. The characters, while not drawn with much depth, were nevertheless likeable and it kept my... Read more
Published 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars An unexpected delight
This story was delightful. I rated 4 stars b/c of subject matter or genre expectations. I was expecting a "regular" fiction novel but in reality the story is a romance novel. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning debut love story set in India and middle America
I attended two of Sonali's book readings before I started reading A Bollywood Affair, so I not only heard a little of the book but also listened to many of the questions from... Read more
Published 12 days ago by Susan Blumberg-Kason
4.0 out of 5 stars A very beautiful, soft, fun and fragile romance.
Touching, sad, funny, this romance really made me travel. I've spent a great time with the characters too. Read more
Published 15 days ago by luciefuentes
4.0 out of 5 stars easy read that I really enjoyed
This was a light, easy read that I really enjoyed. Parts of it are like a romance novel, but it's not by any means the whole book. Read more
Published 15 days ago by Book Lover
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing read
So this was the first time I read Sonali Dev's books, what a pleasant surprise. I love the depth of the characters, the glimpses into their culture and the interesting dialogue. Read more
Published 15 days ago by Portia Lindi Mogale
5.0 out of 5 stars UNIQUE AND FUN
A unique, fun, in-depth read. Miss Dev has hit a homerun with this story. I look forward to more of this author's stories.
Published 18 days ago by Avid Reader
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More About the Author

Sonali Dev's first literary work was a play about mistaken identities performed at her neighborhood Diwali extravaganza in Mumbai. She was eight years old. Despite this early success, Sonali spent the next few decades getting degrees in architecture and written communication, migrating across the globe, and starting a family while writing for magazines and websites. With the advent of her first gray hair her mad love for telling stories returned full force, and she now combines it with her insights into Indian culture to conjure up stories that make a mad tangle with her life as supermom, domestic goddess, and world traveler.

Sonali lives in the Chicago suburbs with her very patient and often amused husband and two teens who demand both patience and humor, and the world's most perfect dog.

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