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The Zoya Factor

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  3,435 Ratings  ·  264 Reviews
Alternate cover edition can be found here.

When the younger players in India's cricket team find out that advertising executive Zoya Singh Solanki was born at the very moment India won the World Cup back in 1983, they are intrigued. When having breakfast with her is followed by victories on the field, they are impressed. And when not eating with her results in defeat, they
Paperback, 511 pages
Published April 21st 2015 by HarperCollins (first published 2008)
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(showing 1-30)
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Aug 16, 2008 Namratha rated it it was amazing
Zoya Solanki.....a mid-level marketing executive at an ad-firm...a typical ‘Karol-Bagh’ type....with masses of black curling hair and full-cheeks which is the bane of her existence. Her idea of a perfect assignment: Working with SRK and getting a glimpse of his toffee-coloured torso!

So how does ordinary Zoya Solanki become ‘The Zoya Devi’..the Indian Goddess.....the good luck charm on which the hopes of India are riding?


Zoya happened to be born at the very moment when India clinched the W
Srikari Downey Jr.
Zoya Solanki, Servicing girl to Zoya Devi, The Goddess! How you may ask? Well she got lucky, LITERALLY! The indian cricket team realizes that whenever she has breakfast with them they win and when she doesn't they even lose to a country that doesn't even exist (by this I mean minor cricket playing nations). This book is a roller coaster of her journey as a lucky charm to the team. Will she still be her sensible self and not go really deep into this "Goddess" status or will she start believing t ...more
Sep 01, 2008 Somyaiyer rated it really liked it
The best thing about Zoya is that it is not just 'an english book by an indian' if you know what I mean. There is so much more story and people and India than in the 'I'm Indian, I live abroad, I'm confused' kind of book there has been so much of in the recent past.

Zoya is peopled with characters that are as believable as they are likable. Zoravar, Eppa, Rinku Chachi, Vishal, Monita even Sanks are people you would have or at least easily could have met somewhere.

It is laugh out loud funny in man
Dec 04, 2011 Ankur rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011

this is the kind of book i hv always dreamed of writing! funny, saucy yet endearing!

One of my fav ppl on Goodreads had recommended me this book when we met the 1st time,saying it was chick-lit but good. now i am not a big fan of the genre, and tho i had the book for the last 10 days or so. Yday eve had a tiff with dear wifey, and thought will browse this for half hour or so, give her time to cool down, and then make the obligatory apologetic sounds to bring around the rapprochement!

not a goo
Mar 26, 2013 Snigdha rated it really liked it
It's not literary elitism; it's just Anuja Chauhan being a bit over-the-top with her nonetheless fantastic metaphors. The Dilli feel to this book was what I loved the most.


1. he's not all mushy mushy
2. he's hot in the cannot-be-tamed way
3. strong and confident
4. he's nikhil khoda

I refuse to accept he's fictional. Oh god i love him so much even though i harbour no love for cricket gah
Amey Nadkarni
Jun 17, 2012 Amey Nadkarni rated it did not like it
In my defense, i picked up this book for two reasons, namely- 1) I was intrigued by the fact that 'sometime back' a noted production house wanted to make a feature film out of this and 2) The synopsis seemed interesting.
What i should have also taken a moment to read were the reviews. Especially the one- and there is only one- at the back which mentions the word- 'chic-lit'!! Big Mistake!

And since i hate leaving a book midway- especially when it is not an anthology- i had to curse, moan and grunt
Oct 23, 2016 Sruthi rated it it was amazing
I bought this book long ago and forgot its existence in my book shelf till recently . I regret it . I seriously do , DAMN , How did I miss this book all this while ? This is too good to skip

Synopsis :

Zoya from AWB , an advertising company which hires celebrities and manage to shoot a few endorsements on various products . She is chubby , short , lively who loves firecrackers . Ohh yes , she is born on the same day as India won world cup . Personally she doesnt believe in luck , lucky charm or s
Jun 29, 2015 Rajan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: My goodreads, Facebook and all other friends
Recommended to Rajan by: My goodreads friends
I wanted to post it on Anuja Chauhan FB page but that option is not there. So i am pasting it heare. Hope she reads it.

I just finished your “The Zoya Factor”. I liked it immensely. In goodreads I saw some of reviewers has categorized it chic lit but I will prefer to call it BINDASS LIT. Your English is good but unpretentious unlike Vikram Seth and Arundhati Roy. And Hindi and hinglish in between makes it very Indian and you doesn’t look like a Nora Roberts, Patricia Cornwell wannabe. It is surel
Dec 14, 2014 Qube rated it liked it
I see this book in two parts.

The first 100 or so pages were witty and lively. Written in a language that resembles English, it is the tongue of the Delhi teenager of the feminine kind. But it has intelligence. It reminded me of my niece. I quite enjoyed it.

After the novelty wore off, and romance reared its head, the novel nose-dived. The remaining 400 pages or so were ... well, I's rather not say anything about it, as I am not the target audience. Don't want to run down a book of a sub-genre tha
Oct 02, 2012 Chik-lit rated it it was amazing
RATING : 4.5
When the younger players in India's cricket team find out that advertising executive Zoya Singh Solanki was born at the very moment India won the World Cup back in 1983, they are intrigued. When having breakfast with her is followed by victories on the field, they are impressed. And when not eating with her results in defeat, they decide she's a lucky charm.

The nation goes a step further.

Amazed at the ragtag team's sudden spurt of victories, it declares her a Goddess.

So when the e
Vrinda Agarwal
Jun 18, 2013 Vrinda Agarwal rated it it was amazing
The Zoya Factor is a funny, refreshing read. It rises above scores of books by confused writers who desperately try but fail to portray the changing Indian society. Well, this book makes no pretences.
It is an account of the cricketing world in India through the eyes of Zoya Solanki, an advertising executive who becomes a lucky charm for the Indian Cricket Team. The book follows her to Australia for the ICC World Cup where she must breakfast with the Team before every match.
However, everyone on t
Indrani Sen
Mar 21, 2015 Indrani Sen rated it really liked it
Shelves: india
This is the story of Zoya who was born the moment India won the cricket world cup in '83. She is so lucky that a cricket team supported by her never loses. She discovers this fact about herself and ends up becoming a lucky charm for the badly struggling Indian cricket team. Now we follow along and enjoy Zoya's antics and dive into the whole crazy circus-y world of Indian cricket. There is the dishy Indian captain of course.

This is a romantic comedy. A rom-com that is very well written. The chara
Shayantani Das
Aug 19, 2015 Shayantani Das rated it liked it
The Zoya Factor has its high and lows for me. Still for someone reading Anuja Chauhan for the first time, I wager this book too would be an extremely entertaining experience. Chauhan's style, which was refreshing when I encountered it, has worn off its charm on me three books later. She still made me laugh out loud at certain moments, but otherwise it felt like reading the same formulae applied in a different setting. The characters as well, Dabbu, Bonita and Zoya seem to be made from the same m ...more
Apr 28, 2012 Shalini rated it it was amazing
One of the best contemporary Indian books. Wickedly humorous, couldn't stop laughing, though a bit raunchy at places. On the whole I thoroughly enjoyed this light comedy involving a middle grade advertisement executive, a young cute female with chubby cheeks, who is forced to spent her time eating breakfast with the Indian cricket team as she was born at the auspicious moment in 1983 when India stuck the last wicket and gained the cup. She falls for the dishy captain and suffers many ups and dow ...more
Rohan Ranjan
Nov 13, 2012 Rohan Ranjan rated it it was amazing
Dude...if anyone asks me to describe this book...baap hai Rey!!
Read it..if u Indian and cricket is your diet...then must read...
And if u not a cricket lover...I suggest u still read this..INSANE!!!!
One of my best books off all time..Love ZOYAJI to the core...god knows why redchillies his taking sooo long to make the movie...Hopefully the cast parineeti as Zoya..that would be epic!!!
But all in all..Anuja chauhan is a genius...and this is a masterpiece!!!
Jun 14, 2015 Sweety rated it did not like it
My fault (once) again. I read the 'chick-lit' tag far too late, namely, after 15 yawn-inducing pages. Juvenile and utterly predictable. (I flipped to last page to confirm the predictability factor)
The end.

May 05, 2016 Arpita rated it it was amazing
Anuja Chauhan's brilliantly hilarious debut had me in tears. There are pages and lines I kept going back to just for the sheer joy of the inane way in which she writes.

I have been on a streak this year to read more "meaningful" books. Having said that, nothing could prepare me for the simple pleasure of reading something as mundane as a filmy love story full of puppy-like romantic gestures and a constant eruption of giggly, swooning teenage crushes.

All the characters in this book are lovable and
Sep 21, 2013 Vibha rated it did not like it
If I were to describe this book in one word, it would be 'dumb'. This book was recommended to me by two of my colleagues who generally have a good taste in books. Alas, they both were wrong this time.
I think I lost few of grey matter while reading this book. The facts looks like thoroughly googled and put together. Nothing wrong in that but looks obvious.
The dialogues are loosely put, the narration horribly written. The hinglish did not have that kind of charm. In fact, I usually like a good mi
Sep 09, 2015 stuti rated it really liked it
more like 3.75.

there were moments where i thought this would be one of the best books i read this year, but i ultimately wasn't too impressed. i really like the concept of the story and there were moments that were so funny and cute! i also loved that it was at it's core a very indian book. it was written by an indian person about indian ppl from india and it completely came across. there was just an understanding of the country and the culture that i appreciated, instead of india being a stereo
Sep 17, 2012 Bigsna rated it liked it
This may be the first "chick - lit" that I've read by an Indian author.
A "chick-lit" by Google's definition is a genre of fiction which addresses issues of modern womanhood, often humorously and lightheartedly and has a central female protagonist.

Anuja Chauhan has picked up the most popular sport in India to weave a story of luck with an unexpected premise. At its core, The Zoya Factor is a love story of a next door girl and a super successful sportsman.

The language of the book is very "Indian
May 06, 2012 Suchitra rated it liked it
Shelves: by-us-for-us
i did like some parts of this book. some lines that made me laugh. and the idea was a good one too. written quite well. but i did not like the fact that the book was too long for the story. about 200 pages seemed unnecessary! dragging the story along. and i think i do not like portrayal of zoya as a girl who swoons seeing the skipper. i prefer the women in books to be strong characters who do swoon at times but that is not the only thing they do!
Nov 28, 2008 Shalini rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: mass readers
Zoya Factor is the new face of contemporary Indian writing in English. Its masala fiction at its best with astory and charcaters that would appeal to the mass Indian reader. Anuja Chauhan builds the mini and sub plots in true adwoman style keeping the flavours intact- completely local and frivolous.A great book for a fun movie.
Selva Subramanian
Dec 15, 2015 Selva Subramanian rated it really liked it
A very good rom-com and an impressive debut by the author. Loved it. Romance n Comedy in equal measure.
Bharath Ramakrishnan
Zoya Singh Solanki was born at the precise time that India won the World cup in 1983. She seems to have a rare gift – she is a lucky charm to the team she hangs around with and supports. The Indian cricket team and the cricket board seems to believe this too, except the captain Nikhil Khoda. Zoya is an advertising executive and a period of absence is worked out such that she accompanies the Indian cricket team for the cricket world cup to Australia. Zoya is soon viewed as a kind of goddess, whos ...more
Apr 24, 2017 Diviya rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
I was looking for some light reading after failing to get through a description ridden Arthur Hailey medical thriller. This book tells the story of Zoya, a chubby-cheeked client service rep in advertising, who turns out to be a lucky charm for the Indian cricket team.

The plot was like a fairy tale; absolutely absurd, extremely predictable and rather dragged out. An ordinary girl (who was incidentally born at the very moment India won the World Cup in 1983) is shooting with SRK. However, her spo
Divya Nambiar
Dec 12, 2014 Divya Nambiar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I started reading this one, I really thought it was one of those books with ramblings by an ad agency's poor lamb, ranting about the crazy ad world with a 'get-it-done-ASAP' boss. Little did I know that I would be forsaking all my other work to turn the pages of this one, so soon!

The reason why I loved this book is because of its simple storytelling peppered with enough humour to tickle your funny-bone in the most unlikeliest situation, in the most unexpected way.

NZ= New Zealand. Poor Zoya
Oct 08, 2014 Bindiya rated it it was amazing
The Zoya Factor- Ms. Anuja Chauhan’s first book, forges new territory. Its audacious, irreverent and fun!!! Popular fiction in India is still a myth, the genre is limited the IIT-IIM type growing-up Pains sagas, made popular by engineers and aspirants. Women oriented literature is not even being whispered about. Thus, this book comes as a pleasant and agreeable surprise. Its is lie-on-floor-legs- up- in- air-laugh-uproariously funny. As soon as I read it, I wanted to read it again. I have talked ...more
Apr 18, 2013 Pragyna rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
It's books like these that remind me that India has a lot of great authors. This book is funny and sweet and quite romantic. I really enjoyed it thoroughly.
The book follows Zoya Solanki, a girl who works in advertising. She has a big family with the typical annoying relatives and the protective bhaiya. Working in advertising, she has the chance to meet a lot of stars. Living in India, most of these stars are cricketers. Although Zoya does not like cricket, she is caught in the web of IPL and th
Aug 17, 2014 Siddharth rated it liked it
Rating: 3.5 stars

A decent romantic novel about a girl who's a lucky charm in cricket - the team she breakfasts with always manages to win. There are a lot of laughs, authentic sounding dialogue (always a pleasant surprise in an Indian novel) and a pretty cool, not-overly-melodramatic romance.

The book could have done with a lot of trimming, though. At 509 pages, it is a tad too long.

A recommended light read. The author's latest, Those Pricey Thakur Girls promises to be a lot more compelling. I'll
Apr 29, 2013 Mallika rated it it was amazing
This book came to me as a pleasant surprise. It was funny, fast-paced and oh so entertaining. Anuja Chauhan made a smart selection of elements to integrate in her first book. Things that every individual of this nation would relate with - cricket, love stories and superstitions. Coupled with her knowledge of advertising and how it influences the Indian masses, she had me hooked.

Good one-time read.
But I've rated it with 5 stars because it truly blew me away.
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Anuja Chauhan is an Indian author and advertiser. She worked in the advertising agency, JWT India, for over 17 years. She has written 3 novels, The Zoya Factor (2008), Battle For Bittora (October 2010) and Those Pricey Thakur Girls (January 2013). All three books are romances.
More about Anuja Chauhan...

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