Friday Fiction – A Marriage Unarranged

Welcome to Friday Fiction #2

I have started a Friday Fiction series on what I’ve been reading, what has taken my fancy or what I’d like to read.

This was on my list 12 things to do before turning 60 – to write more book reviews and share them on my blog.

I’m an avid reader and have set a goal of 100 books for my 2020 Reading Challenge. You’re very welcome to follow along on my progress, just click the link.

Also feel free to tell me what you’re reading at the moment and leave any suggestions you may have for me! There’s not much I won’t read 🙂

Marriage Unarranged by Ritu Bhathal: 5*

I have been following Ritu’s blog for years, But I smile Anyway, and I met her in person in 2018 at the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards in London. She is a beautiful soul inside and out. I am so happy to read her first novel and she deserves all the success in the world. I must also point out I bought my copy of her book and have not been sponsored in way to write this review – just in case you thought I was paid!

This is the blurb from Goodreads:

Aashi’s life was all set.

Or so she thought.

Like in the Bollywood films, Ravi would woo her, charm her family and they’d get married and live happily ever after.

But then Aashi found the empty condom box…

Putting her ex-fiancé and her innocence behind her, Aashi embarks upon an enlightening journey, to another country, where vibrant memories are created, and unforgettable friendships forged.

Old images erased, new beginnings to explore.

And how can she forget the handsome stranger she meets? A stranger who’s hiding something…

Marriage Unarranged

My review:

This was a great read! I have known Ritu as a blogger for years and enjoyed meeting her a few years ago at the Annual Bloggers Bash Awards in London, so it was always going to be a book for me to read, if only to support a fellow blogger!

But it turned out to be far more enjoyable than I anticipated 🙂 It’s also been my first 5 star read for 2020 and I don’t give them out willy-nilly!

The story was captivating, contemporary and realistic with the characters well drawn. I wasn’t prepared for how much I would enjoy being taken into the Indian family way of life, and having travelled to India I could understand the issues and appreciate Ritu’s descriptions of the food, colour, people and situations.

The story of Aashi and her family drew me in and I found I couldn’t stop reading and wanted to find out what happened. It was a love story and a family story, and reminded me a bit of an Indian version of Crazy Rich Asians but I enjoyed this one far more.

Well done Ritu, you may have taken years to get it written but it was well worth it and I’m so glad you finished it! Now looking forward to the next books to find out what happens next.


If you enjoy chick lit, romance, cultural and family stories, then this is a must read for you Ritu describes her book as chickpea curry lit – chick lit with an Indian twist! A very apt description!

I’m still working my way through It’s OK that you’re not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn’t Understand, by Megan Devine, which I mentioned in last week’s Friday Fiction post. It’s a much heavier read which may take me some time.

It's OK That You're Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn't Understand

It’s OK That You’re Not OK is a book for grieving people, those who love them, and all those seeking to love themselves—and each other—better.

So what are you currently reading?

Leave me a quick comment with what you’re reading at the moment.

Thanks for joining me for Friday Fiction and I look forward to reading with you again soon.

Deb xx

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You can see all my reading challenges and books read here on my Book page.

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57 Replies to “Friday Fiction – A Marriage Unarranged”

  1. I just finished reading Lilac Girls. Actually I listened to it on an audio book on the way to work. It’s a true story about 3 different women in WW2. It’s so good sometimes I sat in my car listening to it when I was already home from work! This book was on the NY Times top selling books list for ages. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good read.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Sounds like an interesting novel. Not normally a romance or chic book person but this sounds a little different. Not really reading much at the moment as seem to be busy planning, researching and looking after dogs!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi Deb, thanks for the review and I may be ready for some Chick Lit as I’ve been engrossed in the DCI Ryan series by L.J. Ross. I can’t put them down and just love the characters. It is set in Northumberland and I must have read at least 10 out of the 15 or so in the series. Highly recommend and I notice you are currently reading A Body in the Dales so you might enjoy the DCI Ryan series as well. Love a good British crime book. x P.s. Like Helen, I’ve read Lilac Girls and loved this era of WW2

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Deb, thanks for sharing at #MLSTL. I’ve been so caught up in the British crime genre that perhaps I need to take a break from that for a while and try something different. My daughter has set herself a reading goal this year although she mainly reads Non Fiction self development books. She has given me a couple of good reads from her list as well. One is Atomic Habits which is very interesting and easy to implement in life. Have a great week. xx

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I am reading the Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson, a story about family, unplanned pregnancy and an ageing grandmother with dementia. There is both humour and emotion, I am yet to get to the part regarding a secret dating back to the American Civil War. This is set in a small southern country town in Alabama.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. This book sound a great read Deb. I love the way she describes it “chickpea curry lit”. I don’t give 5 stars easily either but I’ve also had my first 5 star read – The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah #MLSTL Sharing

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Hi Deb – I haven’t read this but it sounds interesting. BTW in future would you be able to choose a more “lifestyle” oriented post to link up with MLSTL to stay within the guidelines (since I deleted someone else who was linking reviews – I’m a bad person!) Yours was much more interesting than hers, but we’re trying to keep the playing field level xx
    Thanks for linking up with us at MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I think Megan Devine’s book is a winner. I have it as an audible download and actual book. Her story of grief from her perspective (literally) and that as a professional therapist has helped so many people I know.

    Denyse #mlstl

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes that’s so true Denyse. I just finished reading it and gained a great insight into grief. But I thought it was written by another author and didn’t realise until more than half way through! I’d got my authors confused, still worth reading and I’m glad I did 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Hi Deb, I appreciate book reviews and I was not aware how they can make a significant difference to bringing awareness to a book. I have always been curious about arranged marriages and why they are often successful. A wonderful review, Deb, and I have added it to my reading list. I love learning about other cultures. #MLSTL

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Hi Deb, I appreciate book reviews and I was not aware how they can make a significant difference to bringing awareness to a book. I have always been curious about arranged marriages and why they are often successful. A wonderful review, Deb, and I have added it to my reading list. I love learning about other cultures! #MLSTL

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Hi Deb, I think it’s so cool that you were able to meet and get to know the author of this book! It adds a unique dimension to the reading experience. And, it sounds like a worthwhile read, too. Shared on SM. #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

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