Tag Archives: Sonali Dev

A Change of Heart

About the Book

Dr. Nikhil ‘Nic’ Joshi had it all—marriage, career, purpose. Until, while working for Doctors Without Borders in a Mumbai slum, his wife, Jen, discovered a black market organ transplant ring. Before she could expose the truth, Jen was killed.

Two years after the tragedy, Nic is a cruise ship doctor who spends his days treating seasickness
and sunburn and his nights in a boozy haze. On one of those blurry evenings on deck, Nic meets a woman who makes a startling claim: she received Jen’s heart in
a transplant and has a message for him. Nic wants to discount Jess Koirala’s story as absurd, but there’s something about her reckless desperation that resonates despite his doubts.

Jess has spent years working her way out of a nightmarish life in Calcutta and into a respectable
Bollywood dance troupe. Now she faces losing the one thing that matters—her young son, Joy.  She needs to uncover the secrets Jen risked everything for; but the unforeseen bond that results between her and Nic is both a lifeline and a perilous complication.

Delving beyond the surface of modern Indian-American life, acclaimed author Sonali Dev’s
page-turning novel is both riveting and emotionally rewarding—an extraordinary
story of human connection, bravery, and hope. 


 

September 26 – The Silver Dagger
Scriptorium
– Excerpt
September 26- 27 Book Street – Review  & Excerpt
September 27 – Bookish Devices
– Review & Author Q&A
September 27 – Books, Dreams, Life – Review
& Excerpt
September 28 – Whispering
Stories
– Excerpt
September  28  – With
Love For Books
– Review & Author Q&A
September 29 – Living
Life With Joy
– Author & Character Q&A
September 30 – Authors and Readers Book Corner
– Excerpt
September 30 – All
About Romance
– Review & Excerpt
October 4 – Reading
Reality
– Review
October 5 – Somewhere Lost in Books
Review, Author Q&A & Excerpt
October 6 – Brooke Blogs
– Excerpt
October 7- Book
Lover in Florida
– Excerpt
October 7- Deluged With
Books Café
– Review & Excerpt
October 10 – Chick Lit
Plus
– Review

Author Bio

Award winning author,
Sonali Dev, writes Bollywood-style love stories that let her explore issues faced by women around the world while still indulging her faith in a happily ever after.
Sonali’s novels have been on Library Journal, NPR, Washington Post and Kirkus Best Books lists.
She won the American Library Association’s award for best romance in
2014, is a RITA Finalist, RT Reviewer Choice Award Nominee, and winner of the RT Seal of Excellence. 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. Find out more at sonalidev.com.
 
Contact links:
Twitter— @Sonali_Dev
sonalidev.com
Newsletter—http://eepurl.com/O4xA5
Buy Links for COH:
Book Trailer:

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

Review: 

This book… wow. The sheer amount of emotions I felt while reading this book is incalculable. After reading the description, I knew this was going to be emotional roller-coaster. Despite how excited I was to get an ARC, I actually waited a few days to read it. I knew I needed to be able to devout a few hours to sitting in my bed, reading this book with a box of tissues next to me. After finishing it, I can honestly say that Sonali Dev is one of the most amazing writers I’ve ever read. I had loved Nic and Jen in her previous book, The Bollywood Bride, and really really did not want to read about Jen dying. However, Dev was able to convince me as the reader that Nic and Jess, the heroine, belong together as much as Jen and Nic previously did. Both of her characters have been emotionally run through the wringer and it was so satisfying to see them begin to heal each other. The subplot of this book focuses around black-market organ stealing which provides an interesting physical contrast to emotional pain the characters deal with. I met Sonali Dev at the Baltimore Book Festival two weekends ago and she confirmed that her next book will be continuing that story with two minor characters introduced in A Change of Heart!

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Top Ten Books That Made Me Cry

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten list and everyone is welcome to join. This week’s theme is a freebie so I decided to do “Top Ten Books That Made Me Cry”. I’m one of those people who adores books that make me cry so I figured, why not.

  1. Midnight Pleasures by Eloisa James Midnight Pleasures (Pleasures, #2)

    This book makes me sob. Not just cry. Sob. I’m actually not the biggest fan of this book’s plot but whenever I pick it up, I know the emotions I will get from it and that’s why I keep coming back to it.

  2. Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever by Julia QuinnThe Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever (Bevelstoke, #1)

    This is one of my favorite Julia Quinn books. I think that’s because most of her books are so happy that I was knocked off my feet by the emotions in this one. Case in point, my other favorite Julia Quinn is Romancing Mister Bridgerton, which has similar themes but leaves me grinning the entire book.

  3. The Bollywood Bride by Sonali DevThe Bollywood Bride

    I just read this book recently and I’m pretty sure I sobbed from start to finish.

  4. Dream a  Little Dream by Susan Elizabeth PhillipsDream a Little Dream (Chicago Stars, #4)

    A lot of Susan Elizabeth Phillips books make me cry but I decided to include the two that make me cry the most.

  5. Kiss An Angel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips Kiss an Angel

  6. Styxx by Sherrilyn KenyonStyxx (Dark-Hunter, #12)

    Oh god. There aren’t words for how much this book makes me cry. It doesn’t matter what I’m in the middle of doing, just the thought of the scene where Styxx is poisoned and dreaming of Bethany and their son. I’m tearing up right now just typing that.

  7. Acheron by Sherrilyn KenyonAcheron (Dark-Hunter, #8)

    I’m still emotionally scarred from that book.

  8. Blue-Eyed Devil by Lisa KleypasBlue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2)

    This is my favorite Lisa Kleypas book and I cry through the first 100 pages over what Haven has to suffer through.

  9. Enslaved by Virginia Henley Enslaved

    The scene in the arena where Marcus has to send Diana back. Sobs.

  10. Heart of Obsidian by Nalini SinghHeart of Obsidian (Psy-Changeling, #12)

    This book tore my heart out and then pieced it back together.

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A Bollywood Affair

A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev

A Bollywood AffairDescription: 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.

Review: I loved this book. I’ve read books set in India before but they were usually historical romances, where the characters traveled to India for the colonial reasons. This, however, was the first contemporary romance I’ve read which is set in India. I’ve wanted to read this book for a while now. The lovely ladies at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books gave this book a rare “A”.And then the book went on sale for Barnes and Noble and I snatched it up!

With all the discussion regarding diversity in books, and in particular, in romance novels, I really wanted to read this book now. Plus, I stopped to chat with Sonali Dev while I was at the RWA Literacy signing and she was so kind and gracious that I couldn’t wait to read her book!! Since I had never read a contemporary romance set in India, I was a little concerned I would be lost in a culture I was unfamiliar with. And I was. The culture was a bit confusing and the customs were different and I wasn’t sure what some of the words meant. This doesn’t sound like a positive review, does it? Don’t worry, it gets better.

So I stopped reading for a moment. And I looked up what “dal” and “rotis” were. Then I realized, this is no different than a historical novel. The first time I picked up a Regency book, I didn’t know what the rules of the ton were. Or why it would be bad for a countess to proceed to dinner before a duchess. These were things I learned from either reading a lot of Regency books or from looking it up. As for the language, it soon became easy to recognize ‘bhai’ for brother. I mean, if I can read a book with Scottish or worse, Cockney, accents written out, surely I can pick up on a few Hindu words and determine their meaning from contexts clues. Once I came to that conclusion, I return to the book and was soon immerse in another culture, another way of life.

Dev weaves a world both familiar and foreign. Mili, the heroine, moves from India to Michigan to go to school. She takes with her the values, morals and culture of her village and it is fascinating to see them juxtaposed with American college culture. Adding to that contrast is Mili’s roommate, Ridhi. Ridhi is born in America but her family is Indian. Rather than seeing an adaption of American culture, Ridhi’s family combined their Indian heritage with the American culture to create a vibrant, enthralling culture of their own. This is especially seen at Ridhi’s wedding, which is so effervescent and fun that it makes me want to watch tons of Bollywood movies.

What I liked best about this book, and about every romance novel, is that the book boils down to the relationship between the heroine and the hero. In the beginning of the book, Samir comes off as kind of a jerk. There are hints of kindness in him but for the most part, he is presented as the uncaring hero who does not want an emotional relationship with whomever he is dating. His devotion to his brother is clear but that is tempered by his determination to get his brother’s marriage to Mili dissolved, something which the reader knows will shake Mili’s entire sense of being.

Despite this, Samir quickly becomes a redeemable character. The relationship between Mili and Samir begins as a friendship, albeit one fraught with delicious sexual tension. Each character grows individually as they grow as a couple. Mili learns that there is more to her sense of self than just an abandoned wife. And Samir learns to confront the demons of his past, although not without a push from Mili. This book brought me back to the bones of what I love about romance novels: watching a relationship bloom between two characters, watching their love grow stronger, watching that love be shaken, and then all seems lost, watching they reunite and become even stronger as a couple.

Favorite Quotes: 

“If you don’t believe in a happy ending, what are you living for?”

“One shot of pain jolted her eyes before ten shots of courage steadied her gaze.”

Rating: 5 out of 5 

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The Bollywood Bride

The Bollywood BrideThe Bollywood Bride by Sonali Dev 

Description: Ria Parkar is Bollywood’s favorite Ice Princess–beautiful, poised, and scandal-proof–until one impulsive act threatens to expose her destructive past. Traveling home to Chicago for her cousin’s wedding offers a chance to diffuse the coming media storm and find solace in family, food, and outsized celebrations that are like one of her vibrant movies come to life. But it also means confronting Vikram Jathar.

Ria and Vikram spent childhood summers together, a world away from Ria’s exclusive boarding school in Mumbai. Their friendship grew seamlessly into love–until Ria made a shattering decision. As far as Vikram is concerned, Ria sold her soul for stardom and it’s taken him years to rebuild his life. But beneath his pent-up anger, their bond remains unchanged. And now, among those who know her best, Ria may find the courage to face the secrets she’s been guarding for everyone else’s benefit–and a chance to stop acting and start living.

Rich with details of modern Indian-American life, here is a warm, sexy, and witty story of love, family, and the difficult choices that arise in the name of both.

Review: This book turned me into an emotional wreck. Barely two chapters into the book and I started crying. I don’t think I stopped until the very end! This book will tug at every part of your heart, break it and then put it back together again. Ria and Vikram are the best romance novel couple, the one who truly complete one another and belong together.

This truly is the month of reunion stories. And the second to have the couple be apart for ten years, the first being Susan Mallery’s Thrill Me.  Ria and Vikram started out a childhood friends whose relationship matured as they did. However, 18 year old Ria broke Vikram’s heart, for pretty decent reasons, and went on to become a Bollywood star, nicknamed “The Ice Princess.” The couple is reunited, ten years later, for the wedding of their mutual cousin. The spark between them, and their past, comes out to play. Dev takes the reader on an emotional ride as both Ria and Vikram try to fight the draw between them, each for their own reasons. One of the best parts of the book is the undeniable chemistry and connection between Vikram and Ria. Their desire for each other has only strengthen in their years apart and quickly becomes too strong for them to fight. They had formed an unbreakable connection growing up and the distance of ten years did nothing to weaken it.

One of the best parts of this book was the deep level of protection the hero and heroine felt towards each other. Vikram had the natural, alpha male protectiveness towards Ria going on. Even more interesting was Ria’s protection of Vikram. In fact, their past breakup stemmed from Ria’s desire to protect Vikram from her dark secret. She had valid, albeit misguided reasons for breaking up with him. Unfortunately, all she ended up doing was hurting both him and herself even more. One aspect of this book I wasn’t a fan of was the narration. The book is in third person but the reader only gets glimpses into what Ria is thinking, not Vikram. Usually, for romance novels in third person, the reader gets to experience the emotions of both the hero and the heroine. I would have like to see into Vikram’s mind, perhaps to understand the reasoning behind his actions a bit more. Despite this, the reader is quickly pulled into a masterfully crafted book, complete with an elaborate wedding and an array of intriguing minor characters.

A Bollywood Bride is an emotionally charged, heart-wrenchingly deep book. It’s the kind of romance novel that reminds you why you loved the genre to begin with. Sonali Dev has breathed new life and culture into romance and I can’t wait to read what she writes next! An instant auto-buy author!

Rating: 5 out of 5. 

Received a free copy from Netgalley in exchange for a honest review

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