When Liberal met Traditional

When Dimple Met Rishi - Sandhya Menon

Summary: Following tradition can be hard, especially if you're like Dimple and thinks tradition should stay in the past so as not to interfere with her future. But when the gods smile down on her and her parents allow her to attend Insomnia Con, she jumps at the chance to escape her traditional cage. Tradition is all Rishi has and it's a path he is willing to conform to make his parents happy. When he goes to Insomnia con to meet his future wife, will it work out the way he intends it to?

 

Pro:

 

  • I always love reading books that incorporate a culture I am not familiar with. The infusion of Indian culture and American was a great change. I liked learning new traditions from another culture and learn a new language.
  • The family dynamics was interesting to read as well and see how they were different and the same as my own. The contrast between how traditional Rishi and Liberal Dimple reacted to their parents can be related to by every teenager. The awkward transition of being an adult but still feeling like a child when finishing high school. The book demonstrates how there is a delicate balance between tradition and venturing out on new paths.
  • I always appreciate strong characters, especially female leads. I could reflect myself in Dimple. Wanting to make a path for myself and pursue a career that may go against tradition.  I appreciated the honesty in how Dimple was portrayed in her confidence of coding and wanting to appear strong. Yet she showed weakness and tried to make herself stronger. Rishi was a breath of fresh air in his traditional beliefs and his love for Dimple. His attachment to his tradition did not feel fake or forced. The boy just wants to be loved!
  • It has been a while since I have read a book that has impressed me in the way Menon has. The way Menon describes emotions, situations and people are unique and vivid. Even though this book is geared toward a young age group, Menon trust the reader will be imaginative enough to visualize the descriptions she is giving. Several times I would re-read passages to experience what Menon wanted me to. 

 

Con:

  • As with reading about a different culture, the mix of dialects can be difficult. The book would combine Hindi and English as the parents talked to Dimple and Rishi. Often times there was no translation to the English version. If there was a translation, it wasn't clearly indicated which made reading the book a little hard and took from the flow of the book.
  • So I was really excited to see a female protagonist in a technology field. I loved how Dimple lived and breathed coding not to mention she was awesome at it. These types of female characters need to be in YA literature but saying that I felt the story lacked the coding theme. There was very little mention of the app Dimple and Rishi was creating.
 
Quotes:
 
  • Your spirits are already friends
 
  • Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same 
 
  • I thought you were the loveliest bookworm I had ever seen in my life
 
  • Love just makes idiots of people