ARC Review: When Dimple Met Rishi

When Dimple Met Rishi


Title: When Dimple Met Rishi

Author: Sandhya Menon

Series: N/A

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton

Release Date: June 1st 2017

Rating:

Four Stars

The arranged marriage YA romcom you didn’t know you wanted or needed…

Meet Dimple.

Her main aim in life is to escape her traditional parents, get to university and begin her plan for tech world domination.

Meet Rishi.

He’s rich, good-looking and a hopeless romantic. His parents think Dimple is the perfect match for him, but she’s got other plans…

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

Perfect for fans of Rainbow Rowell, Jenny Han and Nicola Yoon, When Dimple Met Rishi is a frothy, funny contemporary romance set at a coding convention in San Francisco over one exciting summer. Told from the dual perspectives of two Indian American protagonists, Dimple is fighting her family traditions while Rishi couldn’t be happier to follow in the footsteps of his parents. Could sparks fly between this odd couple, or is this matchmaking attempt doomed to fail?

– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

My Thoughts On…

…The Plot

“If no one says, ‘This is me, this is what I believe in, and this is why I’m different, and this is why that’s okay’, then what’s the point? What’s the point of living in this beautiful, great melting pot where everyone can dare to be anything they want to be?”

Despite their shared culture Dimple and Rishi are two completely different people. Dimple is ambitious, she wants to be the next Jenny Lindt and is determined that nothing, especially an I.I.H. (Ideal Indian Husband) picked out by her parents, will stand in her way. In comparison Rishi is willing to sacrifice his passion for his parents’ wishes. He is willing to settle for an arranged marriage and go into a field he has no interest in simply to please his parents.

And somehow, these two people are pushed to consider a marriage with one another.

When Dimple and Rishi finally come face to face on the SFSU campus for Insomnia Con Dimple makes it clear that she is not interested in an arranged marriage, and not interested in Rishi at all. Normally that would be the end of it, and Rishi is fully prepared to bow out of the competition and head home, until he and Dimple are paired together for the entirety of the event.

“But there’s no way to make it work without one of us sacrificing something big. And you know how it is. It’s usually the woman who ends up sacrificing. And I can’t do that. I won’t.”

Despite their differences Dimple and Rishi find some common ground, and it’s this common ground that helps them as they work on their project and even learn from each other. For Dimple it’s about taking a step back, appreciating her culture and her heritage, and learning to relax every now again. For Rishi it’s about following his dreams and where his passion leads him despite the weight of his parents expectations. As Dimple and Rishi grow closer to one another so does the deadline for Insomnia Con, and the opportunity for Dimple to achieve her dream.

When Dimple Met Rishi is a brilliant story, but when I first read the blurb I did think the arranged marriage aspect would play more of a role in the development of both characters and their relationship with one another. However after Dimple makes it clear, within the first hour of their meeting, that an arranged marriage is not on the cards for her it’s never really mentioned again.

…The Characters

“For me to even get this chance to follow in Jenny Lindt’s footstepsβ€”to actually get a chance to talk to her about my idea? It’s the stuff of my wildest fantasies. But even here, where it should just be about me and my career and the things I want to do in this world, I have to contend with you.”

Dimple has almost had to work twice as hard to get her passion seen as more than just a hobby by her parents, but once she arrives at Insomnia Con she is determined that nothing stand in between her and her dreams. She sees the Con as her gateway to bigger and better things than the life her mother seems to want for her. When they first meet Dimple is standoffish around Rishi; for Dimple Rishi represents everything she doesn’t want from life.

I loved Dimple’s drive and passion. She knows what she wants out of life and is determined to run after it and grab hold with both hands. She doesn’t seem as involved in her culture as Rishi is. Dimple doesn’t want the life her parents have, the life her mother seems to try to push on her, which causes some friction but she stands her ground and refuses to back down.

“She’d get how it made him feel, how the characters became an extension of himself, how he could lose himself for hours as he sat there, hunched over a sheet sketching in panels, watching the characters slowly begin to blink and breathe and laugh and live.”

Rishi seems to be the exact opposite of Dimple. He has dedicated his life to picking up the slack from his younger brother and wants to be the perfect son, carrying on his father’s legacy and agreeing to an arranged marriage. At heart Rishi is a romantic, he sees the relationship his parents have and wants that for himself. Rishi is the kind of person who constantly goes out of his way for the people he loves just to see them happy.

“Rishi kissed her with purpose, with meaning, like he believed this was exactly where they were supposed to be in this moment. He kissed her till she believed it too.”

The relationship between Dimple and Rishi is not perfect. At the beginning Dimple almost resents Rishi for pushing his way into Insomnia Con which was supposed to be a chance for her to begin her career, and not to find a parent-approved I.I.H. She takes the project seriously and knows Rishi does not considering he only came to meet her. However Rishi sees very early on how much this means to Dimple and, realising he made a mistake, tries to fix it.

As more time passes both Dimple and Rishi are able to focus on what they have in common, and later how their different strengths are able to support the others weaknesses. Rishi is respective of Dimple’s ambition and wishes, and does everything he can to help her with Insomnia Con, and in return Dimple pushes Rishi further with his art, making him see he is worth more than simply an extension of his parents’ legacy.


When Dimple Met Rishi really is a book that has it all. There is a cute and fluffy romance, and a feel-good story reminiscent of some of my favourite contemporary authors. At the same time though there is incredible diverse representations in the characterisation of Dimple and Rishi, and a lot of important messages in this book. All in all I really enjoyed When Dimple Met Rishi, I just wished the arranged marriage trope had been explored a little more.

What did you think of When Dimple Met Rishi? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.

All quotes have been taken from an ARC and may differ in the final publication.

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46 thoughts on “ARC Review: When Dimple Met Rishi

  1. MUST HAVE THIS BOOK NOW oh my gosh. I’ve heard so many good things about this one and your review just solidified it! It sounds adorable and I love contemporaries so much, as well as diversity which this book definitely has, with positive rep as well! I’m surprised to hear the arrange marriage plot was dropped to the side though, I don’t remember reading much about that at all in reviews so thank you for that heads up, though I’m sorry to hear about that! I was looking forward to that aspect ahah. Nonetheless, I have a good feeling I’m going to love this one, can’t wait to read it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh it is a really good book Analee, and hopefully one you end up really enjoying as well. πŸ™‚ In terms of diversity and positive rep this was one of the best books I’ve read all year. It was so well written and you could tell how much time the author put into the representation and development of the characters.
      That’s all right, yeah I was a bit surprised that the arranged marriage angle wasn’t that explored in this book. Maybe you’ll find it different, especially now you’ve been pre-warned almost.
      I have that feeling as well, everyone seems to have loved this book so far! πŸ˜€ ❀

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  2. I’ve heard a lot about this book recently! I even added it to my Amazon cart to remind myself to get it and then I happened upon your review! Wanted to read this before I made the final decision to buy/read it. I’m always up for a good contemporary, especially one with that explores different peoples and cultures. I’ve been keeping an eye out for more diversity. Glad I managed to catch on to this one πŸ˜€ The characters sound really interesting, especially Dimple. She seems like a handful, but I like how she’s determined to preserve her beliefs and maintain her independence. Rishi sounds like a sweetheart! It’s a shame the arranged marriage didn’t play as big a part as expected but it’s good to know the rest of the book is enjoyable. I think this is a romance I’d like to read for myself during the upcoming summer days! Great review, as usual, Beth! πŸ˜€ ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah this book has seemed to be around a fair bit recently. Plenty of people seemed to have loved it as well which is great to see. So did my review help you to decide whether to buy this book or not?
      This is definitely a good contemporary, and yeah the diversity and culture were wonderfully represented as well which was great to see. Dimple and Rishi were both amazing characters and yeah it was a shame about the arranged marriage aspect but there was plenty else in the book that made up for that slight disappointment on my part. πŸ™‚
      Thanks so much Azia! πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m thinking I might end up buying it sometime this summer after I’ve finished my other unread books on my shelves πŸ˜€ I’ve got 20 to get through lol

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  3. It felt like the story would challenge the ideas behind arranged marriage and what not. So odd that it doesn’t seem to have been explored further. Seems like it’s a love story that looks into two polar different characters and their compatibility while having this whole Indian culture (not explored that much) in the background. Great review, Beth! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah that’s what I thought, especially because the blurb put a fair bit of emphasis on the arranged marriage idea that I just didn’t really see continued in the actual story. The characters were really well developed, and so was their relationship. Actually I though the culture was explored quite well, it was just the arranged marriage aspect of the book that wasn’t as much.
      Thanks Lashaan! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lovely review, Beth! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed this one – I’m eager to read it sometime. It sounds really cute but I am a bit disappointed that the marriage story isn’t used more? I think it definitely would have been interesting πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Marie! πŸ™‚ ❀ Yeah overall it was a good book, definitely a cute and fluffy contemporary read that I think you'd love as well. I read a review that said something similar about the arranged marriage aspect of the story so I was prepared going in but I was still a little surprised how little it was featured you know? πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah I was quite surprised as well. When I read the blurb I expected the arranged marriage aspect to play a bigger part in the story, but otherwise it was a great book. Dimple and Rishi had a cute romance and there was plenty of culture in the story as well. Thanks Donna! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I skimmed this because I haven’t read it yet -obviously – but I’m glad to see that you enjoyed it! I haven’t added it to my tbr yet because I really don’t like the cover for some reason – it keeps putting me off actually wanting to read the book! I probably will at some point, though πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah I do that with books still to be released that I want to read, but this one was a really good book overall. Oh that’s a shame about the cover, from what I’ve heard most people seem to really like it but I guess everyone has different tastes don’t they? Still if you do pick up this book one day I hope you enjoy it Lauren! πŸ˜€

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  6. I keep seeing so much praise for this one floating around but I have to admit I’ve heard a few times about how the arranged marriage aspect that seems to be the center of the story ends up not being the center. Seems like a case of a misleading synopsis to me. Either way, it still sounds like such a cute and diverse read. I’ve not read very many if any books with Indian characters and I’ve been hearing this one explores the culture in such a great way. Plus, if a contemporary has a cute and fluffy romance then I have to read it because well I always need cute contemporaries. I definitely want to read this one big time. Maybe after LoS? Might end up being the perfect read to get me out of whatever funk that book puts me in. That one along with a few other cute contemporaries on my TBR. πŸ˜‚ Anyway! Glad you ended enjoying this one, Beth! Great review as always!! πŸ˜ŠπŸ’•

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    1. Yeah I was aware of that before going into this book, the only review I read before starting this was Reg’s, but I was still surprised by how little of it there was in the story. I’d say this was a misleading synopsis but asides from that this was a great book. The culture is amazing, the characters and their relationships with one another well developed, and yeah as a contemporary it’s got the cute and fluffy romance parts down as well.
      Ha, I feel like LoS is going to be the book that ends up putting you in a funk, and if it does this book may be the perfect solution. Either way it’s one I’d recommend you add to your contemporary TBR list. πŸ™‚
      Thanks so much Melissa. πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Reg’s review was the one I first heard about it not playing a bit role in the book too. Which is good to know going in because otherwise I definitely would expect it to play a huge role. Perfect example of why I love reviews! 😊 That’s great to hear about the characters and their relationships. And yay for cute and fluffy! Can never have too many of those types of contemporaries.
        Oh LoS probably is. It’s going to be the book to turn me off fantasy for a while because I’ve heard things about the ending and heartbreak and just yeah. And then I’ll have to wait until 2019 until the last book! Beth you were right to wait because I feel like this wait is going to be worse than the wait for The Song Rising. I’m actually kind of scared for LoS now. πŸ™ˆ Though now I’m wondering… Which ending will be worse LoS or TBS4? We’ll see! (Once we’ve both read both of them anyway lol) But yeah I’ll most likely be going on a fluffy contemporary binge after LoS and this is one of the ones on the top of my list!
        You’re welcome, Beth!! 😁β™₯

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      2. I kind of went in expecting there to not be a lot of the arranged marriage trope in the story but I was still a little surprised how little there actual was. Yeah reviews can be a good indicator of whether to lowers or increase your expectations! πŸ˜€ Nope, never can have enough.
        Oh my god you have to wait until 2019 for the last book! In that case I really need to stretch out my re-reads of the series because I need to ensure there is as little time possible for me to wait for that last book. You’re making me scared for LoS as well! πŸ˜€ You’ll have to let me know, because if it is LoS I may not start that series until the last book has been released. Seriously I can’t deal with too many insane cliffhangers!

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      3. YES! I think the only reason we have to wait until 2019 for the last book for this trilogy is because Cassandra Clare is releasing the first book in The Last Hours trilogy next year (kind of like how The Infernal Devices is a spin-off for The Mortal Instruments, The Last Hours is going to be the same for The Dark Artifices). I guess we have to read the first one in that trilogy before we read the last book for TDA. Which makes sense given some parts of LoS but still a torturous wait. Best to stretch out your reading of these for sure though lol. And surprisingly I finished LoS and didn’t hit a slump at all. I want to dive into another book right now. But yeah, LoS ended in a VERY brutal cliffhanger. Cassandra Clare decided I didn’t need my heart in one piece anymore. 😭 Although, it was an incredible book and I loved it. So I think you’ll end up enjoying it whenever you get around to it even with the heartbreak. πŸ™ˆ

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      4. OK, in that case I think I’m going to have to stretch out my re-reads of the series so by the time I get around to Lady Midnight and LoS the last book will have been released. Or get up-to-date with the other books and just not start that series until the last book has been released.
        Well at least there will be another Shadowhunters book released so it’s not like waiting two years for completely new material you know?
        Ohh, that’s great to hear, so what book have you got on your to-read list next then given LoS didn’t send you into a slump?
        Sounds brutal, but yeah I’m sure I’ll love it! πŸ˜€

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      5. Definitely a good idea! But true you could finish up TMI and read TID and then just not read Lady Midnight or Lord of Shadows until the last book is out in that series.
        And yeah there’s that. Which I’m extremely happy about because it brings back in my favorites from one of the previous series. Just after Lord of Shadows I really wish there wasn’t a two year wait for that last book. πŸ˜‚
        I actually went on a contemporary binge after LoS. I read faster than I could write reviews though and was switching computers at the time. I’ll probably be using them all for Standalone Sunday mini reviews. And then tonight I’m finally starting Throne of Glass. I need some fantasy again! πŸ˜ƒ

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      6. Yeah that’s probably what I’ll end up doing. Ill try and stick to my aim of finishing the finished series Clare has released this year, and maybe get around to her unfinished series when they’re all finished as well. Seems like the best way to avoid insane cliffhangers.
        I feel like that two year wait will be killer, but at least you have another book with another favourite to tide you over! πŸ˜€
        I feel like I’m about to go on a contemporary binge soon, it seems like the perfect time to get around to some of the contemporaries I have on my TBR list.
        And oh that’s so exciting to hear. I really hope you love ToG Melissa! πŸ˜€ ❀

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      7. Yeah, most likely the best way to avoid her cliffhangers. They’re always torture. πŸ™ˆ
        True. Between The Last Hours and the first book in her Magnus trilogy releasing this year it’ll be enough to keep me happy. Especially the first book for the Magnus trilogy.
        Well I hope you have fun with your contemporary binge! I definitely think forcing myself to switch genres for a little while helped in keeping from going into a reading slump. And I know I already said it in another comment but I am loving ToG so far! 😁

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      8. Well at least she’s still releasing more books. I imagine as well by the time the third book in the Lady Midnight series has released there’ll be a cliffhanger in either The Last Hours of the Magnus trilogy you’ll be desperate for the next book of. πŸ™‚ Seems to be the way Clare works when it comes to her series.
        I’m trying to mix fantasy and contemporary a little more now. It’s summer so that means I want to read more contemporary books in the sunshine!
        Ohh, that’s great to hear! πŸ˜€ ❀

        Liked by 1 person

      9. Oh most likely. I can already imagine the first book in The Last Hours trilogy ending in a cliffhanger because this is Cassandra Clare we’re talking about and of course she would do that and then give us the last book for the other trilogy and make us wait two years for the second TLH book. πŸ˜‚ I honestly think she favors cliffhangers. But well it keeps people reading that’s for sure.
        That’s what I’m trying to do too. Especially because of summer and the fact that I’m out of my contemporary slump. I think once I finish the ToG books I’ll go on another contemporary binge for a little bit. 😊

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      10. The real question isn’t so much will it end on a cliffhanger but how bad a cliffhanger will it be?
        It definitely keeps people reading, and it keeps people talking about the books as well which is never a bad thing. People seem to have been going insane over LoS from what I’ve seen.
        I seem to be in a bit of a contemporary binge at the moment. I mean, I am reading fantasy books but there are more contemporaries I want to get around to than anything else! πŸ˜€

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      11. Very true. I would say it’ll be a mild cliffhanger given it’s the first book but then after LoS I can’t say that for sure because for all I know it’ll end up being a very brutal one. πŸ˜‚ Definitely never a bad thing and I’ve been seeing a lot of people going insane over it too. Even now.
        Well I hope you’re having fun with your contemporary binge! 😁 I actually have no clue what I’m going to read after I finish Empire of Storms now. I seem to be back to wanting to read only fantasy and I want to read another series but haven’t figured out which yet.

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      12. You can never tell how brutal a cliffhanger will be until you’ve read the book, but by then it’s too late, you’ve read it and you need the next book so so bad! πŸ™‚
        I seem to be on a bit of a contemporary/fantasy binge, mixing up the genres a little. Ohh, I wonder if Empire of Storms will put you in a bit of a fantasy slump. That’s got an insane cliffhanger as well. You may need some contemporaries after that book! πŸ˜€

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  7. EEK I WANT TO READ THIS SO BAD. I have recently gotten into cute fluffy contemporaries and I nEED MOREEEEEE. Plus the arranged marriages in Indian (and other countries) culture is really interesting to me. Dimple seems like a character I’d enjoy to read about (and her name is awesome!!!). Great review, and I’m glad you found this book enjoyable. πŸ™‚

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    1. Oh it’s a great book May, and if you’ve been getting into cute fluffy contemporaries when When Dimple Met Rishi is a book I’d highly recommend because it is so cute! πŸ˜€
      The arranged marriage aspect didn’t play a large part in this book but the culture was really well written so I think you’d be happy with that, and Dimple’s an amazing character as well.
      Thanks so much May! πŸ˜€ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Everyone is loving this one but you know how I feel towards contemporary books…I’m just not sure if I will ever be in the mood for this one.
    I’m glad you liked it though!! I’m also glad it’s doing so well bc it sounds cute. ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

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