Review: 'Fashionably Yours' by Swati Sharma (2014)
Maya Kapoor arrived in Mumbai with a glamorous dream, quite literally. Maya wants to be a serious fashion writer for the high-end fashion magazine, Glamorous but luck is not in her favour. Instead, she lands a job with a local fashion magazine, Style. Maya hates everything about it but for now this is all she has. Despite all the odds, Maya is excited about living an independent, fashionable life in the city of dreams.
At twenty-five, love has eluded Maya. But when she bumps into the dashing photographer, Aryan Malik, she falls head over heels for his gorgeous smile and charming manner.
But Maya seems to be stuck in a rut - her credit card bills are sky-high, her melodramatic mother can't stop ranting, the boss is unbearably cruel, her younger sister has decided to tie the knot, and she's not sure if Aryan could love a simple, confused girl like her.
Will Maya get the fairytale life she dreamed about or will she let everything slip through her fingers? Read her diary and find out.
Swati Sharma's debut novel 'Fashionably Yours' (which has such a colourful and stunning cover!) was published in November 2014 by Harlequin India. Swati is a reviewer for Chick Lit Club, just like I am, and I was honoured and excited when she asked me whether I wanted to read and review her novel! I think it's amazing Swati managed to make her dream come true and have a book published; not all of us dare to take this brave leap into the world of publishers and sharing our work with others, so I definitely want to applaud her for that. I was really curious to read 'Fashionably Yours' and couldn't wait to sit down it!
Maya Kapoor is a twenty-something who has one big dream: she wants nothing more than to work as a journalist for her favourite fashion magazine, 'Glamorous.' In contrast to most girls around her, including her younger sister, Maya doesn't necessarily want to find a rich husband, she'd much rather have her own career and glamorous life filled with expensive shoes and a fabulous job within the world of fashion. So, when Maya is offered the chance to work for magazine 'Style', she immediately grabs the opportunity with both hands and moves to the city of Mumbai. Life at 'Style', however, isn't everything Maya hoped it would be, and neither is life in the city. Together with her best friend Anu she tries to make the best of things, and everything certainly starts to look up when handsome photographer Aryan Malik arrives on the scene...
This was the first book I read set in India and I really enjoyed reading about the Indian culture and the importance of family and tradition. This sense of tradition forms an important and fascinating part of the storyline, since Maya wants to follow her dreams instead of finding a rich man to marry, completely against the will of her mother. I immediately warmed to Maya and kept my fingers crossed for her, hoping she would manage to make it in the fashion magazine world. As a character, she sparked off the pages with her emotions and enthusiasm, and the same goes for many of the other secondary characters, such as Maya's best friend Anu and Maya's parents.
The plotline was quite easy to follow; the idea of a girl going to the city to follow her dreams is perhaps not that original, but I personally thought Maya's journey was really quite entertaining. I do think the author could have done more with Maya and her story; occasionally I felt like the story wasn't really going somewhere concrete. The potential for a great chick lit read is definitely there, but it didn't quite get there for me. I also couldn't help but spot quite a few typos and errors, which I thought was a shame, even though Swati Sharma's first language is not English. Overall, though, I definitely enjoyed reading 'Fashionably Yours'; it's an easy to read and light story about following your heart and fighting for your dreams. A novel with potential, and I already look forward to seeing what else Swati Sharma has in store for us!