Chick-lit Zindabad !


Do you have some days when you don’t want to read anything that you cannot finish within a couple of hours?

Well, whenever I am in that mood, I generally turn to my favorite mystery /suspense novelists to give me my CTs (cheap thrills).

However, one of my friends is a big fan of the chick-lit genre and she recommended a couple of books for me:

  • Almost Single by Advaita Kala
  • The Zoya Factor by Anuja Chauhan

I finished reading both the books and below are some things that I liked and disliked about them.

Almost Single
Things I like
1. Very easy reading – ideal for any kind of short journeys
2. The heroine (I can only think of her like that. The term protagonist does not really work in this context 😀 ) works as a Guest Relations Officer in a hotel. This was very interesting for me because once upon a time, I used to perform the same function. A lot of the description about the day-to-day functioning and the kind of issues she faces ring very truly and bought a lot of nostalgic memories to me.

Things I dislike
1. The character build-up of the heroine and her friends is extremely cliched and one-sided. They come out looking very artificial, and it is difficult to empathize with anything they are going through.
2. The hero is nothing but a cardboard cut-out of a typical Mills n Boon hero. There is nothing in the novel that brings out his thoughts, feelings, or even basic tastes. It is extremely difficult to understand how this paragon of handsomeness and all other virtues falls for this rather dumb, not-so-attractive heroine.
3. The ending is very abrupt and unsatisfying, and it looks like the author has written it with a view to writing a sequel in the future. It also looks like the book has been over-edited and probably some kind of continuity between chapters is missing. Each chapter starts very abruptly.

The Zoya Factor
Things I like
1. Hero and heroine are very adorable. In fact, each character in the book comes out quite sweetly (even the nasty characters). In addition, the chemistry between the hero and heroine is really nice. You can understand why the hero (who is the captain of the Indian cricket team) falls for the heroine (who is neither an actress or a model).
2. The book is loosely based on cricket and since I like cricket, this was an easy-sell for me.
3. The book and the characters are based on existing personalities in cricket so it is great fun mapping the characters to their real-life avatars (for example, the hero Nikhil Khoda is very obviously based on Dhoni).
4. The sense of humor in the book appeals to me.

Things I dislike

Not much anything

My friend has now lent me one more chick-lit book “You are here” by Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan. But, I think I am totally overdosed on this genre. This book is sitting on my shelf gathering dust, while I am revisiting my tried and tested mystery / suspense novel.

Up next, re-reading The Bourne Identity 🙂

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  • I bought ‘Almost Single’ long time back, which was being compared to ‘Bridget Jones Diary’, but I could not even finish it. I hate to leave books midway but I just could not finish it. After more such experiences, I have steered clear of books like these which keep popping up left, right and center.

  • I was not even able to get through You are here, I think I read maybe 10 pages, and then cursed myself for wasting money lol! I wish I had invested on The Zoya Factor 🙂

    • @Veens: You are Here was hugely overhyped in my opinion. Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan is an entertaining blogger, but ouch! that book was bad. I don’t know if I completed even 10 pages!

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  • I used to love chick lit in college but have had my fill of them. Nowadays it is very rare for me to come across chick lit that doesn’t bore me to death. But my favourite guilty pleasure author is Nora Roberts. I LOVE her books. You should try Santa Montefiore 🙂

  • I can only do about one chicklit book at a time, or maybe two if I’m having a truly miserable month at the time. So I can sympathize with your overdose!

  • dmanji

    the two books are in my list but didn’t find time to read them on recent journeys 😉 was thinking of taking them up … now your review makes me feel let me keep them for the next journey :D…

  • Kals

    I loved Khoda and The Zoya Factor – one of the rare chick lits that actually appealed to me. I’m looking forward to the movie they are making out of it. Here’s my review.

    I’ve heard good things about ‘You are here’ and I’d love to check it out! 😀

  • I couldn’t agree more with your reviews!!! I had read Almost Single when it had just come out and that was the time when I had discovered Indian Writings & was enjoying them and trust me AS was a big let down!!! If my frenz ask about that book I don’t recommend it to ppl and wonder how is it this big a success!!!

    And I fell in love with Zoya Factor as you said all the chars are adorable & the chemistry between the lead couple is awww! inspiring hehehe…totally mushy material it is 🙂

    • @Smita: Thanks for visiting and commenting 🙂

      And I was pretty surprised at all the hype for Almost Single, when The Zoya Factor was so much more fun!

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