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Lovetorn by Kavita Daswani

Sunday, January 1, 2012
When Shalini’s father gets a new job in L.A., she is torn away from her life in India and the boy to whom she’s been betrothed since she was three. L.A. is so different, and Shalini dresses and talks all wrong. She isn’t sure she’ll survive high school in America without her fiancé, Vikram, and now she has to cope with her mom’s homesickness and depression. A new friend, chill and confident Renuka, helps Shalini find her way and get up the courage to join the Food4Life club at school. But she gets more than just a friend when she meets Toby—she gets a major crush. Shalini thinks she loves Vikram, but he never made her feel like this.
In Lovetorn, Shalini discovers that your heart ultimately makes its own choices, even when it seems as if your destiny has already been chosen.

Author Kavita Daswani has always been fascinated by child marriages and betrothals, and this story of a traditional girl from India, who is exposed to so many more freedoms and experiences after being dropped in a completely alien culture, is a fresh and contemporary look at the subject.

Goodreads Summary

Shalini, the main character of this novel, leaves the familiarity of India for the strange new environment and people of America. One of her most regrettable thoughts of leaving India consisted of Vikram, the boy she has been engaged to since she was three. Vikram and Shalini's relationship does continue via long-distance. They skype, chat on the phone, and write letters; however, it is not easy to keep a long-distance relationship going and Shalini slowly begins to adjust to her new home.

At the beginning, Shalini experienced the typical out-of-place new girl emotion. There were a few "mean girls" who made her adjustment harder than it had to be. She envies her younger sister for slipping into the school and her new life so easily. Shalini is resilient, however, and manages to make some necessary changes and move on. Her mother is not making the necessary changes...her mother's behavior alters the family dynamic. When Shalini decides to forge through school and meets a handsome American boy, Toby, she suddenly has questions about her future.

Overall, this was an excellent book. I loved Shalini's character. She was so clearly intelligent, brave, and calm. Toby was interesting, he was a "nice guy." He could have possibly been introduced earlier in the novel, but it was fine the way it was. Vikram was so sweet it was unbearable-a reader will be able to see why Shalini loved him. The events were fast-paced and interesting. The story is told from Shalini's perspective and she truly allows the reader to get inside her head. This book is recommended to young adult/teen readers.

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This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.