Blurb: Mahi’s back in the pavilion, but, ji, her dreams got mixed with mud. Hopes got crushum-crushed. Heart became pieces-pieces. As if life isn’t tatti enough, one after another new-new siyapas are starting.
Mahi’s hungry to grow Ludhiana to London, her party-planning company, to international height. Lavith, her international returned ex-love, is thirsty for her blood. Leave work-life balance, she’s toh losing mental balance.
Her BFF (Bechari Frustoo Friend) Dingy’s to-be-in-laws are refusing first night in Bangkok. Her other BFF, Dumpy’s refusing to go anywhere without his Combo Pack — his Sweet Knife GF Simran and her paindu brother Raj. Her brother Niku’s business problem is not saying bye-bye. And her stepmom Bhooto (short for Bhootni) is – hai-hai – don’t ask.
But the question bothering her the most is: Will her ex come back to her? Will it be Lav-ith or Leave-it for Mahi?
“It was a total syapa! No, it was a Syapa with Capital S. No, no, it was SYAPA with all capital letters.”
Mahendar is a feisty and independent Punjabi girl who runs a “world-famous” event management company – ‘Ludhiana to London’. She’s not pummelled easily, especially by her tree of an ex-boyfriend, Lavith. Dingy, her BFF torments her to plan her wedding in Bangkok and she agrees, also, trouble comes in the form of her buddies Dumpy, Simran and Raj. When she is coerced to work with her ex, with whom she is very much in love, it could prove potentially problematic! Fighting down her baser instincts to have her way with him, she manages to conduct an unforgettable string of wedding festivities for Dingy. Mayhem seems to find Mahi in every way imaginable, she will have to figure out a way out of the ‘Syapas’ that ensues.
A vivacious treat for the eyes as a generous spread of primary colours, yellow, blue and red dominate the cover. Enamoured with an alluring font for the title and dabbling in a few desi elements, the cover comes through as a whole.
Mahi is armed with pertinent wit and humour and incites the crowd with her sarcasm. I believe, I did guffaw when I reached several parts while reading. And I confess that I had no qualms on how her character evolved. Her inner turmoil was displayed in desegregation which I thoroughly savoured as a reader.
Top marks for Lavith because things heated up the minute he made his entry, especially, when she made the Rana Daggubati reference that had my knees quaking. (And I shamelessly admit that I might have imagined him as Lavith the whole away.)
Other major characters include – Dingy, who came off as an annoying and intolerable BFF. Raj, whose ridiculous antics came off as funny and Simran’s incessant need for attention became agitating after a degree. Niku, Bhooto and Dumpy didn’t hold much significance in my eyes but when thrown into the mix, they created quite the ruckus.
Language and Writing Style:
The communicatory flow of the novel in its entirety feels barricaded hence the reading experience wasn’t wholly gratifying. Having read the author’s previous novel, Glitter and Gloss, I was mindful of her potentiality and gusto. As an avid reader of her work, it is disheartening to admit that the major issue in this book was the language used. Evidently, Hinglish (A dominant combination of Hindi and English) posed as a problem for me and it took me longer than necessary to wrap up the book. I don’t pay heed to colloquialism in short draughts but when it weaves into an integral part of the prose, it becomes transubstantiated. If the content were to be presented in a movie script format, it would doubtlessly take off as a fun-loving rom-com.
“I named him Muesli, because he looked like Chusli’s healthy version.”
An excellently interwoven plot with the right amount of twists and turns as a reader expects. The short length of the novel works in favour of the author as it unreservedly captivates the attention of the reader. Humour is the strong suit of this book and it marries into the story to the hilt. The characters are on par with reality and create a sunny presence and are relatable too. The author furnishes an earnest tale of a cynical and interesting woman which is deeply amusing.
‘Bathinda to Bangkok’ is your ideal companion for a short and crisp read. It’s the perfect pick for you if you are looking to wind up a book in one sitting. I suggest you aide yourself with a cup of oolong tea for the ‘Dhamaka’ that awaits you.
- I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
- The blurb is borrowed from goodreads.