TOP 5: Romance novels by first-time authors
Who doesn't like a good romance right? We bring you the best romance novels by first-time authors.
Okay so it's true. The market has been inundated with the 'chick lit' genre of books -- books that talk explicitly of sex, college romance, beautiful girls and handsome men. And unfortunately many have writing that immature and plots that become boring and pointless and cannot even hold a reader's attention for the entire span of two hundred odd pages!
After a lot of research these are the ones which seem to have garnered some interest amongst the reading audience. If you know of any then do share them with us.
Set in Mumbai, Screwed by first time author Manoj Bhavani talks about relationships at work and when one is in love. There are many authors who have written books belonging to the same genre. What makes this one different is the writing style.
For example, each of the chapters begin with quotes from well known celebrities like Albert Einstein, Douglas Adams, Woody Allen. Also the complexity of the characters is dealt with sensitivity and humour.
Himself having an advertising background, he brings to life Karan Advani, the twenty five year old copywriter who is the protagonist of the book, beautifully. For example, instances of the continuous battle between client servicing and the creatives have been written about with intelligence and wit.
Another beautiful thing about the book is that even though it describes a lot of mundane things that men habitually do like reading newspaper while sitting on the pot, it will not make women feel that it is gross but instead just shake their heads and say "yes, that's them".
Complications begin when the two lady characters Sonia and Anita, both his love interest, are introduced. And that's when Karan's character does tend to become a little predictable. But it does not get boring. Overall, Screwed maintains a good pace throughout and ends well. It is worth a read if you are bored of a lot of heavy duty reading and need a fun and refreshing read instead.
Purchase Screwed here!
Romance on Facebook
In an age when social networking has become such an important part of our lives, this book, Romance on Facebook by first time author Amrita Priya, is both believable and also effortlessly brings out the message of being true to oneself.
Geeti and Siddhartha are childhood sweethearts from Cuttack. Because of their shyness they are unable to speak to each other about their feelings and circumstances leads them to part ways. After nineteen years when she chances upon his Facebook profile she sends him a message.
Despite having their own partners and children now, they are unable to resist what their teenage years had started.
This begins their journey once again for the next eight months -- this time on Facebook with the help of messages and emoticons. The story climaxes on what happens when they plan their meeting in Cuttack once again.
I won't be a spoilsport here and tell you about the ending. All I will say is that Amrita depicts the life of the married Indian women who is torn between her husband and her love with a lot of honesty.
However, after the initial few chapters, the constant Facebook conversation does seem a little repetitive. And one can almost predict the ending.
A sudden twist in the end would have definitely worked better. However, overall, the writing is quite smooth and if you love romance -- traditional or online -- it is definitely worth a read.
Purchase Romance on Facebook here!
Image: Romance on Facebook
Men on my Mind
The title of the book caught my attention. Men on my Mind seemed predictable and I could guess what the story would be -- similar to the many more romances that authors are dishing up these days. But I was mistaken. It's different. And that's so because first time author, Radha Thomas, it describes the journey of an innocent seven year old.
The book begins when the young protagonist who studies in a convent and her only brush so far has been through Mills and Boon books, chances upon a conversation between her mother and aunt who describe how essential it is for a woman to have at least five men to fulfil a woman and how each man must be different.
What follows are various funny and embarrassing moments for the young girl as she experiments with possessiveness in men, those who can't kiss and even drug addicts. And yet she never gives up hope in finding the right man someday.
This is brought out in the book cover as well which depicts legs – one with a shoe and the other with heels, martini glasses, guitar etc. these images seem to be a reflection of the girl's journey across the globe as she deals with a kaleidoscopic series of events and sexapades.
The story that Draupadi needed five men has been aptly used by the author to describe the heroine, her needs and the shades of grey that she meets in her journey.
It is a bold and frank story and as the book progresses your initial apathy toward the wantonness of the girl turns to sympathy as you read about how she tries to juggle multiple relationships. It is a well paced candid story with not only the protagonist but even the secondary characters (the men) having being well drawn out.
The men, however, by the time you end the story, might seem to be a tad too much though and it also climaxes a little hastily making you feel that the closing stages could have been more smooth. But since it's a part of a trilogy, maybe the suspense in the end has been deliberately maintained. Overall, a breezy novel worth reading.
Purchase Men on my Mind here!
Image: Men on my Mind
Love Was Never Mine
The first thing that appealed to me about Love Was Never Mine was its cover – it is unique and draws ones attention.
Its further enhanced by the writing wherein first time writer Kunal Bhardwaj brings out the saying that if you really want something then the entire universe helps you to achieve it.
Rahul, the protagonist of this book, is a fresh graduate with simple wants. Unfortunately he falls in love with a girl who loves materialistic comforts and for whom looks are important.
Since Rahul is not exceptionally handsome, he knows that the girl, Shreya, will never give him a chance. Yet he is unable to help himself. Thus begins his emotional journey in the hope that someday he will win her love.
With the backdrop of the cruel corporate world, the emotions of love, desire, friendship and eventually pain and betrayal is brought out by the author very succinctly. Shreya's character could have been developed a little more.
The reader seems a little mystified with what she feels inside her head even as the story ends. Also, with greater emphasis on describing the variety of human emotions, dialogues, seem to be flat and a little abrupt. But the story ends interestingly and the twist in the end makes this book different from the others in this genre.
So for all those who have loved and for all those who have lost in love, this emotionally charged book will be an enjoyable, quick read.
Image: Love Was Never Mine
Truly, Madly, Deeply
The pompous guy from school, Rahul, falls in love with the shy girl Seema, what follows is a breezy teenage romance where no one confesses their love for each other. While everyone knows about it, thanks to Rahul, Seema finds it difficult to handle all the attention. Then come ego clashes and parting of ways. Rahul uses every men to woo her back but by then it's too late.
Although the story begins a little slowly, it gathers momentum as the story progresses. The characters capture the readers' attention through all the warmth that the author generates through his writing. Sometimes the dialogues do tend to get a little filmy.
Perhaps it's been done on purpose to reinstate the effect movies have on today's youth. The book is full of vivid narratives that sketches minute details of moments with the metaphors that are sprinkled bring in a poetic effect.
The emotions, too, are handles subtly and yet with a lot of intensity. So if the blue cover does not grab your attention, pick it up for the delightful read. Laugh and cry with it for it sure is going to touch you.
Image: Truly, Madly, Deeply