Wednesday, May 16, 2012

It's your move, Wordfreak - A book review

It's your move, Wordfreak by Falguni Kothari.

The premise of the book is interesting. Wordfreak (supposedly male) and Worddiva (supposedly female) meet on an online Scrabble playing website. After several months of playing and flirting, they finally decide to meet in person. In the real world, Wordfreak and Worddiva would have in all probability found out that they are actually two much-married, balding, middle-aged men.

However, in the book, Worddiva is 28-year old lawyer Alisha Menon and Wordfreak is 25-year old architect Aryan Chawla, both living in Mumbai. They meet each other and fall for each other like a ton of bricks upon sight. Why ever not - Alisha is a tall (yet waif-like and petite), dark and slim beauty. Aryan Chawla is a tall (and hunkily muscled), fair and handsome stud. And both are single and rich to boot as well - yaay! 

So, the first half of the book moves in total Mills & Boon land where pages and pages are devoted to just how wonderful Aryan thinks Alisha is and just how adorable Alisha thinks Aryan is. This being modern-day India and all, a few pages are devoted to describing the couple having sex in loving detail as well.

If you are into this sort of romantic fluff,  those chapters might have been entertaining. However, I am not and was impatiently wondering if the story was going to go *anywhere* as I skipped pages. I was getting a tad too tired of  reading about two beautiful people mooning over each other while being helped along by other beautiful people. Seriously, not a single character in this book is ugly or even average looking - they are all beautiful and elegant.

Towards the middle of the book, somethings starts happening. Aryan has hidden his past beneath his gorgeous smile and an unfortunate run-in Alisha has with one of her clients results in all his insecurities coming to the fore.From that point onwards, the story starts to focus on Aryan and his relationships and how Alisha acts as a catalyst in helping him resolve his crises. This part made an engaging read as the story wound towards the happily-ever-after end.

The book is well-written and flows well. The secondary characters are quite engaging. I found Alisha's friend Diya very lively and a hoot, though her habit of calling Alisha, Lee-sha (yes, the dash is included) was a little grating. For that matter, Aryan's nickname of "Sunshine" for Alisha made me want to poke my eye too. And in some places, some rather weird observations popped up. Sample this:
"Even though tanned, he was still several shades lighter than her. The quintessential difference between them - he was a North Indian Aryan, and she was a South Indian Dravidian"
Say what!?!!

Still, the book makes for an overall pleasant read and at 282 pages, is a fast read too. Perfect for a holiday.
This review is a part of the Book Reviews Program at Participate now to get free books!