When Dimple Met Rishi arrived in my mailbox back in February, I couldn’t help but instantly find it so charming. It was just the type of young adult rom-com I had been seeking: fun and sweet, but with characters don’t often see in leading roles, unless we look to Bollywood.
I had the opportunity to ask author Sandhya Menon a few questions about her YA debut novel, her favorite Bollywood films, and what inspired her to write a romantic comedy. Read on below, and check out our Instagram giveaway for a chance to win a copy of When Dimple Met Rishi.
What inspired you to write When Dimple Met Rishi?
The world needs more sweet, heartwarming, funny stories about marginalized teens! As an immigrant and child of immigrants myself, I wanted to show this population living their best lives, falling in love, following their passions, and having a happy ending.
Which word best describes Dimple?
Which word best describes Rishi?
Why was it important to write this story in alternate viewpoints?
Because the two main characters are such opposites, I wanted readers to be able to glimpse why they acted the way they did. I didn’t want either to feel unsympathetic, and I felt that was best accomplished by showing people what went on in both their heads!
Romantic comedies almost feel like a lost art these days. What attracted you to the genre and to write a story about young adult characters?
I’ve been a huuuuge rom-com fan. I loved those Meg Ryan films from the nineties, and as I found authors like Sophie Kinsella, I totally fell in love with the fiction genre, too. It was just a natural progression to write a story like When Dimple Met Rishi!
If you could spend one day with any of the characters in When Dimple Met Rishi, who would it be and why?
I won’t choose Dimple or Rishi (too obvious, right?). So it’d probably be Dimple’s mom because I think she’s hilarious!
When Dimple Met Rishi is described as “Eleanor & Park meets Bollywood with the humor and heart of My Big Fat Greek Wedding.” Can you share some Bollywood and Hollywood recommendations for those who fall in love with Dimple and Rishi?
Bollywood: Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, Chalte Chalte, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge.
Hollywood: When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, and My Best Friend’s Wedding.
Follow us on Instagram @TYFofficial and comment on our giveaway gram below with your favorite romantic comedy film or book. One lucky follower and commenter will be chosen as the winner of an advance readers copy of When Dimple Met Rishi. Contest ends 11pm EST on May 29, 2017. US residents only.
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🚨 GIVEAWAY TIME! 🚨 Win an ARC of one of our favorite new summer reads, WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI! To enter to win, do the following: 1. Follow us @TYFOfficial 2. Leave a comment sharing your favorite rom-com book, movie or TV show! Contest ends at 11pm EST on May 29, 2017. US residents only. One winner will be chosen randomly and notified via DM on Instagram. 📖 Learn more about WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI ☕️: WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI is a highly anticipated romantic comedy about two young people who fall for each other in spite of themselves (Simon Pulse; publication date: May 30, 2017). Sandhya Menon moved to America from Mumbai, India at the age of fifteen, and the novel springs from her experiences struggling to fit in and adapt to her new country while still showing respect for the long-standing traditions of her Indian heritage. Dimple Shah is funny, whip-smart, and ambitious, and the last thing on her mind is marriage. She’s going to Stanford University in the fall and is focused on how to convince her parents to foot the bill for her to attend Insomnia Con, a summer-long coding and app development program at San Francisco State University. Rishi Patel is a sweet and considerate young man who is on his way to MIT in pursuit of a computer science and engineering degree (though his true passion lies with drawing comics—which his parents consider a passing hobby, not a potential career path). Rishi has faith in the Indian tradition of arranged marriage and believes that compatibility and stability equal long-term happiness. His grandparents helped his parents find their soulmates in each other, so why shouldn’t this work for him, too? The Shahs and the Patels have already determined Dimple and Rishi are a perfect match and are elated when the two teens both plan to attend Insomnia Con and are certain to meet. But their first encounter is anything but a “meet cute,” as Dimple is determined to have nothing to do with the Ideal Indian Husband her parents have planned for her. Hilarious and heartwarming madcap antics ensue, with kismet proving that the heart wants what the heart wants.
When Dimple Met Rishi is available May 30, 2017 wherever books are sold.