Christina (Reading Extensively)'s Reviews > Lovetorn

Lovetorn by Kavita Daswani
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's review
Jul 05, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: multicultural, read2011, romance, ya

Lovetorn on the surface sounds like a romance with a love triangle however the novel focuses more on Shalini and her family than on romantic relationships. Toby doesn't even appear until more than halfway through the story. When he does show up, he does not make enough of an impression. Readers who pick up this book solely for the romantic aspect might find themselves disappointed but I am glad that the author chose to spend so much time on other things. The portrayal of the culture shock and the adjustments her family must make are well portrayed. I liked seeing how Shalini grew and changed from the dutiful girl she was in India to someone who makes her own decisions.

Readers may not agree with arranged marriages for children but the author does a good job of making sure it is written with sensitivity. I also liked how Vikram was not painted as a bad option. He genuinely cares for Shalini and loves her. The immigrant experience is central to the novel and I think it was depicted believably with both the exciting opportunities as well as the fears and the struggles to fit in. I was also pleased with the ending which felt realistic. The one weakness of the book is Shalini's relationship with Toby. It might serve as an important catalyst in Shalini's growth as a person but it seemed like instant infatuation and I didn't like seeing Shalini become so boy crazy for Toby after months of pining for Vikram. Thankfully the strengths of the novel outweighed the weaknesses for me. I would suggest this to fans of Neesha Meminger, Anjali Banerjee, and Mitali Perkins.

Readalikes: Jazz in Love by Neesha Meminger, Blue Jasmine by Kashmira Sheth, Shine, Coconut Moon by Neesha Meminger, Maya Running by Anjali Banerjee, Koyal Dark, Mango Sweet by Kashmira Sheth

Note: I read an ARC of this book courtesy of Around the World ARC Tours in exchange for an honest review
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