Monday, March 23, 2015

When She Smiled by Ritoban Chakrabarti


This is the story of Roy, a young Indian man and his obsession with the girl of his dreams.  He has just returned from a military like school and has changed from round and chubby to slim and attractive.
The girl he loves finally pays him some attention and in the time they spend together he falls hopelessly in love and thinks she feels the same.  It doesn’t turn out that this is the case so he relentlessly pursues her and makes all the mistakes that a young man would.   One humiliation after another occurs until tragedy strikes Roy’s family and he takes a closer look at himself.

I liked Roy and his ineptness with girls.  The author really got into the mind of a teen and explained how his thought process brought him to do some of the silly and crazy things he did.  His family was portrayed well although they were mostly a supporting cast.  The main story was about Roy and his school friends.

The girl he loved was also a typical teen.  She led Roy on after she decided maybe he wasn’t the one but she enjoyed the attention he gave her so she didn’t turn him away.

I also learned a lot about Indian school life and read a lot of terms concerning food that I didn’t recognize.  Any reader could do a quick Google search to find out what all the foods were.

In all, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to teens, especially if they are interested in learning about other cultures.  I also think they would find that teens around the world are pretty much just like them.

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