It did not surprise me very much to find a lot of cribs about this book here on goodreads. The real mystery is how it ended up being a bestseller! I do...moreIt did not surprise me very much to find a lot of cribs about this book here on goodreads. The real mystery is how it ended up being a bestseller! I don't really have a lot of issues with the factual inaccuracies and so on because I am Indian and my knowledge of the civil rights movement/southern culture/local dialects is quite limited. Also, having grown up on a diet of Bollywood movies, being real and correct are not mandatory to my appreciation of anything. You could take pretty much any topic, douse it in melodrama and stir up a rabble rousing hit. But there is a cardinal rule to that sort of thing. You can't be boring. And Stockett is! When I'd finished the book I actually stopped and wondered what was in all those pages! Did this book have an editor? Pretty much the only portions that worked for me were those involving Aibileen and Mae Mobley. Those bits sprang off the pages and felt real. The rest was a forgettable mess.(less)
It's a book about a single woman in the city. She hangs out with her friends - one beautiful but married to a jerk, another gay, another single with l...moreIt's a book about a single woman in the city. She hangs out with her friends - one beautiful but married to a jerk, another gay, another single with lots of bright ideas on how not to be single. She spends a lot of her time getting drunk, smokes a lot of cigarettes and struggles with her weight. And her name is not Bridget Jones!!!
Hard to take this book seriously. It's bridget minus the charm and the humour. Aisha Bhatia is not particularly likable. Karan whatsisname similarly so. I haven't lived in Delhi for sometime now but I find it hard to digest that people like Nic and Ric do.
It finds some soul towards the end but too little too late. I'd rather read Zoya again.(less)
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 In...moreThe 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 many places. I especially liked the crickindya website comments section. Anuja Chauhan certainly has an ear for dialogue!
Other pluses: Nikhil's a dish and the mushy stuff doesn't make you cringe (well mostly). The romantic is nicely tempered by the ridiculous. Big bonus - people from Delhi especially of Karol Bagh origin will LOVE how VERY Delhi this book is!
Only grouse... it is way too long! Better editing would have made such a difference. With no literary pretensions whatsoever, Zoya is light weekend reading at its best.(less)
I recently re-read this book and loved it more than i remembered hence came to goodreads to put in a review and I was shocked to see all the other rev...moreI recently re-read this book and loved it more than i remembered hence came to goodreads to put in a review and I was shocked to see all the other reviews that spoke at length about how much they hated Lord Worth. I kept wanting to jump in with 'But he didn't's and 'But he wasn't's so here is a review of my own.
In defence of Lord Worth
He lived 200 years ago! Let us make some allowance for the difference in manners and mores. Even Lord Peter Wimsey (who must surely be granted undisputed heartthrob status) behaved in a forward manner with the wives of his tenants - or nearly did anyway. There was a portion in Clouds of Witness that says as much. So while the Earl was definitely out of line during the whole 'Clorinda' episode, let us cut him some slack and look the other way for now, shall we?
Since I was re-reading the book and knew all along who the bad guy was, I was able to appreciate his restraint, his efforts in looking out for his wards,and his wisdom in pushing through unpopular decisions when they were for the ultimate good. The choice of house in Brighton, the chosen chaperone, the hiring of servants all must have taken thought and effort for Worth for which he was not appreciated.
He did not berate her for nearly being molested by the Prince Regent. He got her out of an ugly situation with gentleness and understanding combined with enough social sense to prevent her name being dragged into a scandal. That is the one thing I love about Heyer. How she dexterously rescues her characters from unpleasant situations without making a scene. Look at how she handled the abduction in The Black Moth! Really, i re-read this scene. Nowhere was he less than concerned and kind towards her without making his deeper feelings obvious (that would have been highly mistimed)
Am starting to run out of steam a bit now, but regarding the whole bit about being patronizing in not telling Judith the whole, would she have believed him? With all her prejudice against him, i think not.
But having got the prejudice bit in - did anyone else think this book was kind of a pride and prejudice lite? She even throws in some Jane Austen references! I kept being reminded of that book which is one of my favorites!
While regency buck is certainly no timeless classic, it worked for me as a rom-com in a book with a reasonably interesting mystery thrown in. What's not to like? Oh and I rest my case!(less)
The plot of this book is so smart that it actually figured as a problem in one of my organic chemistry textbooks in college! One of those musty dusty...moreThe plot of this book is so smart that it actually figured as a problem in one of my organic chemistry textbooks in college! One of those musty dusty tomes but still!!!
The brilliance of the science aside, it is truly an excellent book! Dorothy Sayers is a master at creating three dimensional characters that live and breathe. The book is written in an epistolary format and most incidents come across from two or more points of view, each so consistent and complete by itself that that alone would be reason enough to read this book. How does she get the characters, their voice, what they say and think and feel so right every time?
You can see what's coming from the start of course but that will in no way impair your enjoyment of the book, at least not unless you are looking for nothing more or less than a whodunit. Like all of Dorothy Sayers' novels, this is a book that does not see why it shouldn't be a 'real book' (in Lord Peter Wimsey's words) just because it is a mystery novel. Great read.(less)