Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Review: From Twinkle, With Love

From Twinkle, With Love by Sandhya Menon
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: May 22nd, 2018
Source: Edelweiss
Date Read: 5/11/18 to 5/17/18
336 pages

Aspiring filmmaker and wallflower Twinkle Mehra has stories she wants to tell and universes she wants to explore, if only the world would listen. So when fellow film geek Sahil Roy approaches her to direct a movie for the upcoming Summer Festival, Twinkle is all over it. The chance to publicly showcase her voice as a director? Dream come true. The fact that it gets her closer to her longtime crush, Neil Roy—a.k.a. Sahil’s twin brother? Dream come true x 2.

When mystery man “N” begins emailing her, Twinkle is sure it’s Neil, finally ready to begin their happily-ever-after. The only slightly inconvenient problem is that, in the course of movie-making, she’s fallen madly in love with the irresistibly adorkable Sahil.

Twinkle soon realizes that resistance is futile: The romance she’s got is not the one she’s scripted. But will it be enough?

Told through the letters Twinkle writes to her favorite female filmmakers, From Twinkle, with Love navigates big truths about friendship, family, and the unexpected places love can find you.
I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review. Quotes taken from ARC may or may not be in the published edition.

Make no mistake, I wanted to love this book so bad. Especially since I absolutely loved When Dimple Met Rishi. But this, in the end, just didn’t work out for me. And honestly, I’m 100% sure it’s a me thing.

From Twinkle, With Love introduces us to Twinkle, future filmmaker yet is somehow stuck at the bottom of the social hierarchy. Why? Mainly because she’s a bit awkward and just doesn’t fit in well with the popular kids (her family isn’t as well off as everyone else, which definitely plays a part in this too). Even her “best friend” ditched her, which is just plain rude.

BUT Twinkle has a plan. All she has to do is date popular boy Neil, then she’ll automatically be welcomed into the popular group. And her best friend, Maddie, will finally hang out with her again.

Obviously, none of this goes through. Instead of hanging out with Neil, who’s away at swim camp, she becomes close to his twin brother, Sahil. Together, they’re directing a movie for the Summer Festival.

Unfortunately, there were just a lot of things here that didn’t work for me. I know lots of reviewers are completely fine with these situations, but Twinkle’s actions and thoughts just frustrated me to no end. And so I’ll just get those out of the way first:

  • Twinkle’s intentions are a bit, well, not great, as she tries to use Sahil to get close to Neil. This is often used as a plot device, and looking back on this, I didn’t necessarily have a problem with this part. Rather, I didn’t find Twinkle’s reasoning to date Neil great. She literally wants to date him because he’s…popular? Yet she holds back on Sahil, EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE TWINS.
  • The plot itself was very predictable, and yet even though I knew exactly how things were gonna turn out, I still felt very frustrated with Twinkle’s actions.
  • I’m pretty sure I hated all the characters, except Sahil because he’s a sweetheart. Twinkle was frustrating, her best friend Maddie was also pretty annoying, the popular crew really had no reason to hate Twinkle except just to hate her (which fine, I guess you can hate someone to hate someone). I feel like the motivations for these characters and their feelings were not fully developed. Except for perhaps the main couple.
  • Also, can we talk about Twinkle’s need to set up people like a matchmaker? I’m sorry but nooooo just stop please. That’s just asking for trouble, come on now.

I’m sure there is plenty more where that came from, but let’s switch gears and talk about things I did like.

  • The relationship between Twinkle and Dadi, who I think is her father’s mother? If I’m not mistaken.
  • Twinkle’s passion for filmmaking, though to be fair I feel like the romance overshadowed that a bit. This book is written in a diary format, and she addresses each entry to a different female filmmaker/director.

Err, well I guess that is it.

Well this review ended up being me mostly venting, which means you should probably take all of this with a grain of salt. I’m sad that this just didn’t work for me, but sometimes these things just happen, where every trope in a book is just the opposite of what I actually want to read.

Have you read this yet? Am I the only black sheep for this book?
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