His Monsoon Bride by Aastha Atray

Mills And Boons His Monsoon Bride
Review by Maria

Aastha Atray is the winner of Mills and Boon India's 2010 Passions Contest, in which writers were invited to submit a short romance with a view to being selected as the next Indian Mills and Boon writer.  Aastha's book, HIS MONSOON BRIDE was released at the end end of 2011 (The winner of Passions 2009 was Milan Vohra who came up with THE LOVE ASANA.  My review of that book appeared here.).

Aastha Atray has come up with a lovely M&B romance novel featuring Indian characters.  Both the hero and  heroine are strong individuals who make a lasting impression.  He's Mehtab Rathod, who grew up in a poor area of Mumbai and became someone to reckon with in the corporate world.  She's Amrita Piramal, the daughter of a Bollywood legend and a business magnate.  Unlike her late mother who was a symbol of glamour, Amrita is a woman who wants to work towards changing society.  She works as a journalist for a crusading magazine which aims to bring to light the evils of society and create a world of equal opportunity for all.  

Amrita's father's company falls on hard times and Mehtab becomes his saviour.  He agrees to invest in the company and work alongside him to rebuild the company.  In return, Amrita agrees to marry Mehtab.  The proposal is fuelled by Mehtab's need to be linked with the old money of Mumbai's business world rather than being tarred with the brush of the 'nouveau riche'.  Not to mention the fact that becoming a family man will give him respectability and help him shed the playboy tag.  Amrita is expected to smile by his side and wear her designer saris with flair at various social functions.  However, her role as a society hostess is in direct contrast with her role as a crusading journalist.  Will her journalism ultimately hurt or help Mehtab's image?  Therein lies the area of conflict.  For readers of romance, it's a fascinating premise.  How can this couple work out their differences and fall in love?

I liked the socially aware focus of the book.  I also liked the idea that size zero is not what Indian women are all about.  Amrita is described as having a voluptuous figure, with luscious curves.  That definitely rings true.  A healthy womanly body is far more desirable than an anorexic size zero.

It was so nice to read an M&B novel with Indian characters.

4/5 stars.