The Different Bride by Charu Singh
Publisher: Notion Press
Price: Rs. 260 INR(paperback), Kindle Edition is currently free.
Buy here: https://amzn.to/3EPgO5a
My take on the book:
It was the year 2000. Prakash was an employee with Satyam online in their sales division and befriends Chandrika in a bid to turn her into a potential customer. Their initial chats on phone soon turn into friendship, as both enjoy chatting online on messenger and start exchanging thoughts via email. Chandrika insists that they meet in person before taking their friendship to the next level; Chandrika is born different due to a genetic condition.
Prakash comes with his own emotional baggage due to his father’s strict parenting. Will Chandrika and Prakash be able to overcome these hurdles and become companions for the rest of their lives? Will Chandrika be able to find acceptance from Prakash’s family? Is love enough to have a happily-ever-after forms the rest of the story.
The story handles an importance social issue of discrimination which is rampant and in some social circles is even normalized. The author contrasts well between both the families — how Chandrika’s family always treated her normally and helped her grow into a smart and confident person, while Prakash’s family fail to recognize the person beyond their physical condition, and how his parents could never handle the issues Prakash faced growing up.
The backdrop of early 2000s brings back fond memories — dial up internet, online chatting messengers, emails — and helps in the narration to simplify technology and hence lives back then. The story stays away from clichés often found in love stories, with a more realistic touch to the characters and situations. The story is well paced with a new twist every few pages and each of them make the story more interesting.
The story particularly appealed to me by showcasing the issues faced by couples in married life and how no amount of knowing each other earlier can prepare for life spent together after marriage. The condition of Chandrika and the hurdles she faces are showcased very sensibly. The story is majorly narrated by Chandrika, so the reader mostly gets her perspective, except for the climax where Prakash takes over, making the story complete.
All the characters are well developed while Chandrika stands out completely. Pick this one if you prefer to read story with strong characters and different theme.