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The Grand Plan to Fix Everything (The Grand Plan to Fix Everything #1)

3.46  ·  Rating Details  ·  320 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
Rose petal milk shakes and a world of surprises awaits Dini when her family moves to India in this spirited novel with Bollywood flair.

Eleven-year old Dini loves movies—watching them, reading about them, trying to write her own—especially those oh-so-fabulous Bollywood movies where you don’t need to know the language to get what’s going on. But when her mother reveals some
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Published (first published May 24th 2011)
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Wonderstruck by Brian SelznickTall Story by Candy GourlayMatched by Ally CondieThe Emerald Atlas by John  StephensBreadcrumbs by Anne Ursu
Red Dot 2013: Older Readers: LONG LIST
13th out of 46 books — 26 voters
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Middle Grade Novels of 2011
42nd out of 146 books — 156 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 743)
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Jun 29, 2015 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dini is not pleased when her doctor mother announces the family will be moving to India for two years so she can work at a clinic in the small town of Swapnagiri, a.k.a. Dream Mountain. Dini's biggest dream is to meet her favorite Bollywood star, Dolly Singh, and what are the chances of that?! As kismet would have it, very good indeed. With the help of a few true, if unlikely, Dolly fans -- a postal carrier, a car mechanic, and a grouchy landlord -- Dini not only realizes her own dream but helps ...more
Feb 09, 2014 Susan rated it really liked it
Shelves: kid-book
This is a cute book for kids - well, girls, probably, since boys don't like to read about girls so much, which is really too bad.

Dini - Nandini for long - is forced to leave her home in Maryland, to go to India for two years, where her doctor mother has a grant to run a clinic for mothers and babies for two years. When one is 11, leaving home and one's best friend is a highly traumatic event.

The trauma for Dini is lessened by her love for a Bollywood star called Dolly Singh. In a series of coinc
Jun 22, 2016 Carissa rated it liked it
Shelves: juvenile
Do Bollywood movies feature storylines with impossible coincidences and endings wrapped up neat and tight and everybody happy? Because if they do, then this book perfectly embodies those features while also featuring a (fictitious) Bollywood star and her #1 fan, which would be pretty awesome symmetry. I enjoyed the details about what it might be like to live in India (monkeys in the water tank!) and some of the tidbits of Indian culture that were woven into the story, but the storyline itself on ...more
Children's stories focusing on girls are always stories that I want to find and read. Given that I want to work with children and young adults, I'm trying to familiarize myself with lots of different stories. I had heard of THE GRAND PLAN TO FIX EVERYTHING in my Children's Lit class at school, and was reminded of it in my children's services class during a slew of book talks. So I grabbed it from the library, took it home, and decided to give it a whirl.

Dini and Maddie are best friends living in
Brandy Painter
Originally posted here.

Sometimes a book comes along that is a balance of quirky, enjoyable, and well written. When it happens to be a contemporary fiction novel about a culture many young readers are not familiar with, so much the better. If you are looking for such a book then Uma Krishnaswami's The Grand Plan to Fix Everything is one to check out.

This is a book many kids will be able to identify with even if they don't know anything about Bollywood or Indian culture. They will be able to sympa
Sarah BT
Sep 01, 2011 Sarah BT rated it liked it
About the Book: Dini's parents have just announced that they're moving to India for two whole years! Dini can't believe her parents are making her move away from her best friend Maddie and now she has to miss out on the Bollywood dance class she and Maddie were going to take. But India is home to Dini and Maddie's favorite movies and their favorite Bollywood star, Dolly Singh. Dini's parents aren't moving to Bombay, the movie capital of India, but instead to a small town called Swapnagiri. Surpr ...more
Mar 03, 2012 Katie rated it liked it
Eleven-year-old Dini and her best friend Maddie are in love. They are in love with Dolly Singh, the most beautiful and talented actress/singer/dancer in all of Bollywood. But they have been picking up on signs - signs that only a true fan would notice! - that Dolly is in some kind of trouble. When Dini's family suddenly moves to India, she knows this is her chance to find Dolly and fix everything. The only problem is, she'll be leaving Maddie behind...

Doesn't this book just look ado
Cindy Hudson
Jun 03, 2011 Cindy Hudson rated it really liked it
Dini and her best friend Maddie love to watch movies from Bollywood. They memorize lines from songs and know all the situations that can be solved by their favorite actress, Dolly Singh. When Dini’s mom gets a grant to study at a clinic in southern India for two years, Dini is both upset and excited. She’s upset to leave Maddie and her home in Delaware. But she’s also excited that she’ll be closer to Bombay, as all the filmi people call Mumbai. Maybe she’ll even have a chance to meet her screen ...more
Sep 24, 2013 Beimnet rated it really liked it
The Grand Plan to Fix Everything is by Uma Krishnaswami. The book, published by the group Atheneum Books for Young Readers, is 226 pages. The cover is a girl who is standing in front of a map of India which is labeled with what looks like to be important sights. From reading the back, I know that Dini is moving to a different country and Maddie, her best friend is staying in Virginia. Dini is hoping to find a famous movie star who lives is India and might be close.
At about pg. 75, Dini has move
Aug 09, 2012 Chris rated it really liked it
Shelves: j, not-graphic, life, voice, light
And now Dini sees something that only those who listen-listen, look-look, can understand. Open one problem up, like the hood of a car, and you may find another problem waiting to be solved. Try opening that one up and you are likely to find several dozen others just waiting to get in your way. It is all very depressing.


Dini has two especially special things going for her: a wonderful best friend who shares everything with her, has the same tastes, and thinks just like her, and a movie star
Monica Edinger
Jul 31, 2011 Monica Edinger rated it really liked it
Eleven-year old Dini adores Bollywood movies, those entertaining Hindi musicals set in India and filled with grand production numbers, adventure, and romance. As summer vacation begins her life is upended when she learns that instead of dance camp with her best friend Maddie she and her parents are heading out across the ocean for a two year-stint in Swampangiri, a small town in India.

While understandably sad, shocked, and surprised Dini is also a trooper and, appreciating how important this opp
Dini and her best friend Maddie love Bollywood movies, and their most famous actress, Dolly. When Dini’s mother gets a grant to work in an Indian clinic, Dini has to move away from her best friend for two whole years. To make matters worse, they are moving to a small town called Swampnagiri, hundreds of miles from Mumbai, where Dolly lives and Bollywood films are made. Dolly has been having some problems of her own, and by coincidence, fate, or kismet, she winds up in the same small town as Dini ...more
May 03, 2016 BiblioBickie rated it liked it
Cute Bollywood-ish story that covers long-distance friendship (and attendant fears, misunderstandings) and making new friends. A little bit self-aware, as main character Dini makes some decisions about what to do based on what should happen next if her life were a movie script. There are many far-fetched coincidences, but they all contribute to the enjoyment of this sweet confection. Age 9+
Laura Ward
This was a pretty OK book. I wanted to like it more than I did. There was a lot of great cultural information in here; some good Hindi and Tamil words too. But, the story was pretty contrived and it didn't read aloud very smoothly. ... That said, I'm still going to order the sequel. My kids liked it, and we all enjoyed learning a bit more about India in a fun way.
May 28, 2011 Barbara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ncbla
Dini and her friend Maddie share everything--even an interest in Bollywood and the films of Dolly Singh. But when Dini's mother has a grant approved that enables her to work in a clinic in a small town in India for the next two years, the friends are upset at being separated. The only thing that lessens the pangs of their separation is the possibility that Dini will meet her favorite star. Off to India Dini's family goes, and through a series of unlikely coincidences, Dini hatches a plan to stra ...more
Addison Children
Dini is a Bollywood fanatic, but that does not mean she is delighted to learn her family is moving to India for two years. Things look up as she attempts to find her Bollywood heroine and fix her career and love life. Cute girl book.
Jul 13, 2013 Julia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a charming story of friendship and romance. The struggle to stay friends with Maddie despite the distance is something that I think all kids can relate to, whether a physical distance, or emotional distance. The plot is not realistic (no, the famous movie star is not going to come to some kid’s party, and no a kid is not going to reunite the couple), but it is feel-good. I think the style is supposed to be along the lines of a Bollywood movie.

Kind of reminds me of The Parent Trap. Too g
Jun 01, 2012 Jess rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: juv
Coincidence is huge in this story - if you can't suspend your disbelief and throw yourself into the world of Bollywood, then this probably isn't the book for you. Once you're on board with a story that weaves together several characters and storylines into one joyful whole, you'll have fun with Dini and the rest of the characters. Movie stars, postmen, school girls, bakers - the whole story is a colorful swirl. For kids who like stories set in other parts of the world, this has the added bonus o ...more
Christian H
Jan 10, 2013 Christian H rated it liked it
I recently finished the book The Grand Plan To Fix Everything By: Uma Krishnaswami. The book is good and I think people who like realistic fiction, friendships, and " Bollywood Stars" would like this book. When Two friends leave each other one stays ( Maddie ) and one goes ( Dini ). Dini leaves to go to India where she hopes she will find her favorite Bollywood Star Dolly Singh. I think this book is a little bit cheesy and a little hard to get in to. I think Uma Krishnaswami did a good job const ...more
Katie Fitzgerald
A blurb on the cover of the book from author Linda Sue Park described this story as a "modern fairy-tale," and I think that's the best way to sum it up. The events of Grand Plan couldn't happen in real life, but it doesn't matter because it's such a great story. I read this book mostly because it fit so well with the summer reading program theme, One World Many Stories, but it winds up being one of my favorite books of the year so far. I definitely recommend it to girls in grades 4 to 6, and to ...more
Jun 23, 2012 Abbie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
So dumb. And like, not just because I'm (way) too old for it. I read it for SLJ's Battle of the Books and, man, I don't know if I'd have finished it if it weren't so short and large-printed.

I mean, the characters are stupid. The writing kind of nags at you in a bad way. The bits with the monkeys are not for anyone, not funny even if you're five, and I have to say, I don't think I would have liked this book at all, even when I was a kid. It all just comes together too easily, and it's stupid, an
Sarah Rosenthal
Apr 21, 2015 Sarah Rosenthal rated it it was ok
The Grand Plan to Fix Everything was a cute story. Being a Bollywood fan, I was drawn to the story of a girl chasing down her favorite Bollywood star. The characters were endearing, but I found the story a bit dull and unbelievable. For it to be this unbelievable- I think the book needed to be more zany and have more laugh out loud moments. I am not sure it will hold the attention of the young middle grade reader. It's not one I would recommend.
Sep 24, 2011 Pam rated it really liked it
A light book whose main character skips across the pages, continents, and cultures. Perfect for the middle reader who doesn't take life seriously but cares about friends and life. Set in India, The Grand Plan To Fix Everything tells the story of a Indian-American who leaves her best friend in the US to live in India for 2 years. Her obsession with a Bollywood Starlet is central and fun to the story and provides the cross-cultural bridge that readers need to find the setting and customs accessibl ...more
Sep 05, 2011 Ruth rated it liked it
What I liked about this book is that it deals with immigrants but not in a having-trouble-fitting in way. Here 11-year-old Dini (East Indian background) has a very best friend in Takoma Park MD (and I like this since this is my vicinity) and they share a love of Indian movies. The theme of movie scripts goes through the story as Dini hopes to meet the girls' favorite movie star Dolly Singh in India where Dini's family moves for two years. Will she or won't she. She meets a new friend in India, P ...more
May 14, 2012 Brianna rated it liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
I loved the characters, but I didn't love the style in which the author wrote about them. Dini is a stupendous girl character who is smart, insightful, and has keen emotional intelligence for a ten-year-old girl. She is also a plotter and a planner, and I like characters with those traits. It was the unusual point of view of the narrator that kept pulling me out of the story - it ultimately made me like this book less than I anticipated I would.

Full review here:
Apr 07, 2013 Susie rated it liked it
I will get this book for my libraries, because there are few contemporary books set in India. I think many of my students will enjoy it; it was just a little too contrived for me, but I think many of them will relate to Dini and her big dreams. I am ashamed to admit that I do not know more about India, and I was disappointed that there is not a real Swapnagiri. The font and illustrations are a lot of fun. Some of the transitions are a little abrupt, and the continual use of "blinking" bothered m ...more
Mar 05, 2014 Anastasia rated it liked it
its a nice book, but sometimes phrases are awkward.
Virginia Walter
Feb 14, 2012 Virginia Walter rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
Eleven-year-old Dini and her best friend Maddie LOVE Bollywood movies, especially those in which Dolly Singh stars. So when Dini's mother gets a grant to work with mothers and infants in a small village in the south of India, the girls see this as the opportunity for Dini to meet Dolly in person. Dini manages to pull this off with all of the panache and ingenuity of her movie heroine. There is just enough local color to bring rural India alive, and the friendship between the two girls is superfi ...more
This was super fun. I read it in one sitting. I think I was more interested in it since I have been watching Bollywood movies lately, but I believe I would have liked it even without that connection. There is a feeling that it is a bit of a mystery as Dini is trying to track down her favorite Bollywood actress. It is also a bit slapstick at times. Though it is realistic, it is only as realistic as say a movie since things work out well even in the midst of funny missteps.

I think my students wou
Jul 09, 2011 Tanja rated it really liked it
What a lovely story, so full of warmth, friendship, Indian flavors, and hope that eventually everything will be fine! I loved accompanying 11year-old Dini from America to India, learning about a part of India I hadn't heard of before. I admired her for her courage and persistence in trying to locate a famous Bollywood star and to fix everything not just for the star but for herself as well. This book will be a wonderful addition to our collection and I have already several readers in mind who wi ...more
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