Book Review – Arranged to Love

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Arranged to Love
An Anthology
Review By Kanika Sharma

Ratings: 4/5

Hello cocktails! How are you doing? Today I’m going to review a book, which really changed my mind set. Before going further, I want to ask you this question, can love be arranged?

This was the first question that struck my mind before I started reading the book ‘Arranged to Love’. This book is not written by just one but 15 authors. In short, this book contains 15 short stories, which I am going to review one by one. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s get on with the review cocktails.

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Book Blurb: “India, a land brimming with traditions is known for its vibrant grand Arranged Marriages, which have been popular here since historical Vedic era. The entire Indian subcontinent believed in arranged marriages until the selection of bride and groom saw several changes with the emergence of Gandharva marriages. As modernism touched India, the concept of marriages saw gradual shifts from arranged to love, but the aura of Indian Weddings has managed to stay unparalleled till date. But do arranged marriages work? Well… older generations have lived it; so can we follow the tradition too or should we choose the other way?
Arranged to Love is a collection of fifteen short stories bringing in the various flavours of marriages in India. The authors aim to let the readers reflect on this Indian tradition from various perspectives. Rituals are essential, but so is love… Love is a gamble, and so are Arranged Marriages. Then, is it possible to arrange love? Can we actually fall in love with the partner chosen for us by our parents? Does a happily ever after exists in case of Arranged Marriages?”

Mayuri: This story is written by Siddhartha Yadav. Mohit and Mayuri are the main characters of this story. This story is special because the author created an amazing scene wherein it is shown the memorable meeting of the main characters. They are meeting for the first time and the incidents of the story attracts all the attention.

Can love be arranged?: This story is written by Akash Shukla. The story depicts Ashu’s journey of getting married to a girl whom he could never accept till the very last minute as he was engraved with the thoughts of his ex. The story shows how he deals with the situations and get to know his wife. His wife, on the other hand sacrificed a lot to become a loyal wife throughout. But I felt the story is incomplete. There should be more incidents on how they finally came together and their marriage was a success.

Happily ever after!: This story is written by Ila Garg. The story tells about a girl who never used to believe in fairy tales or a Prince Charming coming her way to spent his whole life with Amaya. Abir, on the other hand maintains the magic of love throughout the story. He is a senior to Amaya but used to love her like anything. After reading the story, I wondered who would not want a guy like Abir! The story showcases a beautiful journey of these two opposite personalities yet they got attracted to each other. A real life fairy tale, which every girl would love to fall in at least once in her life.

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Other Lost Part of Yours: This story is written by Sheena Bassi. The story depicts about ancient romance. Not only romance but also the bond of trust two people used to share who never knew, seen or even heard their respective names before marriage. A story of a grandmother who explains her granddaughter that arrange marriage is not about knowing each other for many years, rather it is a trust which blinks instantly after you see your would be partner for the very first time. The author shares a very strong bond with her grandma and the love depicted here between the author’s grandparents is just mesmerizing and loaded with trust.

My Husband’s Girlfriend: This story is written by Arvind Passey. The story is about a couple who have completed 40 years of their arranged marriage. They discuss about all the ups and downs situations with each other in this story. Yes, there is romance showcased in the story but frankly speaking, I didn’t like it. Firstly, the story does not showcase any journey of the mentioned couple’s arranged marriage. Secondly, the plot of the story was confusing. It is not a story, which must be included in this book as it doesn’t go with the title of the book. But if you read the story alone, it is not that bad.

Sindur Khela: This story is written by Ayaan Basu. The story depicts about a boy who doesn’t live with his family and is busy with his work life. But why? Because something happens between this boy and his bhabhi, which was not meant to come out in a negative way as it did in the story. The story is okay as far as the sensitive subject like arranged marriage is involved. The author twisted the words and presented a not so good story to the audience.

A Time for Love: This story is written by Ambalika Bhattacharyya. It is a story of girl who is not ready to get married. She runs from her family (in terms of talks) so that her parents stop forcing her to meet any new guys. It is a decent story to read as it is not informative in terms of arranged marriages. I didn’t like the story at all because of the reason that you don’t learn anything from the same.

Dhruv Tara – The Celestial Conspiracy: This story is written by Shonali Dey. The story is about a girl Tara who was in love with a boy Dhruv since childhood. Dhruv left Tara alone in this world with his memorable poems. But Tara engaged into an arranged marriage by her parents. She is going to spend her life with a partner whom she didn’t know, even not his name. It is a beautiful fairytale written by the author, which I loved reading.

The Lost Love: This story is written by Warishree Pant and Rita Pant. The story depicts about a girl who is not ready to marry. Over a period of time, she had rejected by many guys and for this reason, her mother is tensed. But why? Of course, it is a love thing and his name is Viraat. It tells you about the ups and downs in the girl’s life and how she is able to transform love to a successful arranged marriage.

Her Arranged Marriage: This story is written by Surbhi Thukral. This is one of my favourite stories in the book. Yes, the story does sound like a movie ‘Dhadkan’ but not copied. The trust and love in an arranged marriage of Pratyusha and Arjun is beautifully written. I am not saying much about this story because I really want you to read it by yourself and sense the power of love.

An Arranged Affair: This story is written by Sayani Manna. It is a lovely arranged marriage story of Samir and Swampa. The story mainly focuses on Swampa who is ready to move from her comfort zone to the town, with her husband and new family. But I thought that the story was unrealistic. Nobody would leave his/her comfort zone to make others happy and that too when it is an arranged marriage.

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The Broken Bed: This story is written by Ayan Pal. Frankly speaking, this story is not placed in the right book. Though the language is good but I couldn’t relate anything to arranged marriage. It happened with me for the first time that I had to leave this story in the middle as it was unable to impress me.

Ishoorvi: This story is written by Harpreet Makkar and Dr. Pooja Tripathi. It is always said that women sacrifice a lot as compared to me, agree but it is not that men never sacrifice. The story tells about Harsh, who sacrificed his love for Poorvi and marry Ishita with his parents’ consent. But yes, the story does contain a lot of twists and turns. Ishoorvi is the cutely written love story, which emerged in an arranged marriage.

Perplexity to Wonder: This story is written by Akshat and Priyanshu Saxena. The story depicts a married couple who fights on small things every now and then. Aryan and Sandhya love each other but they never miss a chance to fight. Not because they love doing it but they don’t even know how they land up in these fights. Frankly speaking, this story should not be included in this book as it is not connecting with the subject.

Re-live the Love: This story is written by Nikita Nepali. Dev and Meera are married from past 20 years but now they are getting a divorce. The story tells about the responsibility Dev realised for his parents and for Meera’s as well. A beautifully written love story, which will surely leave tears in your eyes. I loved the way author presented the love story. And thus, this story has added to my favourites list.

The book is edited well and the stories have been arranged well to let the readers delve in the emotions poured out by the authors.

Overall, the book is worth reading and I’ll recommend you to give it a try. I really hope you enjoyed reading this book review as much as I did while writing it. See you all next time cocktails.

Buy the book here: Infibeam | Amazon | Flipkart

Happy Reading! Happy Cocktailing!

Team The Gemini Cocktail

We love you! xoxo

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