{Review} THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT SWEETIE by Sandhya Menon -- and enter to win 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT PINKY!

O P E N I N G   H O O K:

   1. Love 
   2. Girls 
   3. Love (yeah, again) 
Ashish Patel wasn't sure why people ever fell in love. What was the point, really? So you could feel like a total chump when you went to her dorm room only to find she'd gone out with some other dude? So you could watch your mojo completely vanish as you became some soggy, washed-out version of your former (extremely dashing) self? Screw that.

(Page 1, US hardcover edition)

“I already have everything you want for me. I have it all, and I have it as a fat girl. I'm not afraid to live my life as I am right now. I don't need to change. I' not afraid, so why are you?


Today's review is very hard for me. You see, THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT SWEETIE is my absolutely favorite novel by Sandhya Menon. When I first read it last year, I loved it so much, that I froze when I tried to write my review because....how could I articulate my love? This past month, I re-read the novel and all that love came rushing back. And....yeah, it's still my favorite. I'm not sure if I can do this review justice.

SWEETIE is the second book in the Dimple-verse trilogy, a series of connected stand-alone companion novels. This one stars Sweetie Nair and Ashish Patel. Going into it, I wasn't sure quite what to expect. We first met Ashish during WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI because he's Rishi's younger brother, and he was a bit of a reckless mess. Granted, he's still a mess as SWEETIE begins. He's had his first heartbreak and isn't bouncing back easily. He asks his parents to set him up, since it worked out so well for Rishi. The only problem? Sweetie's mother won't allow the two to date. She says the two aren't in the same league because Ashish is thin and Sweetie is overweight. Her mother is always telling her to eat healthier and makes her run laps out back when she gets home, even if she's been at track practice all afternoon. Sweetie knows she's healthy and is sick of it. She takes matters into her own hands and arranges to meet Ashish on her own terms. Neither one expects to fall for real, but fate has other plans in mind...

I love the dynamics of this couple and the way they go from acquaintances to friends to something more. Ashish just wants to get over his former girlfriend. Sweetie wants to prove that she is lovable irregardless of her weight. Neither expects the relationship to turn into something genuine and lasting. Their interactions come alive, and they have so many fantastic scenes together, from racing one another on the track, to a dynamic Diwali festival to dates set up by Ashish's parents, and there are just so many memorable scenes. A lot of contemporary novels don't have so many crystalized, memorable moments that you can still see so specifically, and I loved re-exploring them this second time. These two are just so good for each other, so caring, so genuine. They're both innocent and not innocent at the same time, if that makes sense. They've both been through a lot, and the support rom one another is exactly what they need to flourish and grow.

I also love the focus on health and weight. Sweetie is an amazing athlete (and also singer!), and it's completely okay. Even though her mother is always nagging her to lose weight, Sweetie knows she doesn't need to, that she's healthy. She knows how to take care of herself. Ashish is also so supportive. He could care less about her weight and thinks she's gorgeous just as she is. His parents are also very supportive about Sweetie and how she looks. I was so happy to have a book that starred an overweight main character. There wasn't fat-shaming (unless you count from Sweetie's mom), and Sweetie isn't on a quest to lose weight or change who she is. This book was everything, and will mean so much to so many readers young and old. Whether they are overweight themselves, or whether it helps them to to normalize different weights and not only see thin as healthy, these discussions are so important, and Sweetie is such an amazing role model.

I also really loved Ashish's family -- I also loved them in WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI, and was so happy to see them again in SWEETIE. Menon's books always have strong threads tying them to their Indian heritage and culture. Some parents are more "by the book" and traditional than other parents throughout the novels, creating interesting dynamics that fuel various plots along. One thing, however, remains consistent: they're all supportive of their kids, even if they might not seem so on the outside. I think the Patel parents are actually my favorite of them all, because they just want their sons to be happy and are so kind and caring and supportive. Even though they're super rich, they act so every day and normal, and I always cheer to see a new scene with them and were so glad to have them featured in two novels. We see so much more of them in this book and they are fleshed out more than they were in DIMPLE, and family scenes completely came to life.

I could go on forever about all the reasons I adore SWEETIE, but this review is already getting long and I'd rather you pick up the book and discover all the things that make it amazing for yourself. While SWEETIE takes place during the school year, it has a timeless feel to it and is perfect any time of year and would make a great book to bring to the pool or the patio this summer!


If you are able to, please purchases a copy of 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT PINKY from indie-owned Wellesley Books, who hosted Sandhya Menon's virtual launch party for PINKY earlier this week!

You can order online through Bookshop and Libro.fm -- the store will receive a portion of the proceeds and it will help so much!


You also have a chance to WIN A COPY of PINKY below -- it's truly the perfect summer read! It takes place during Pinky and Samir's summer vacation. I don't know about you, but personally, I love reading books that take place in "real time." I loved this book so much that I've already read it twice, and now I want you to have a chance to read it as well!

Enter below!

"He...frowned at her as sweat dripped into his eyes. Stepping away, he shook like a dog. 'Good idea,' she said like she was impressed. Then she followed suit. He watched the sweat arc off her in the sunlight, like crystal drops of rain..." (Page 19)

"Maybe Sweetie Nair was just as much of a dark horse as he was."(Page 56)

"He was a riot of color, a total mess..." (Page 150)

"She opened her eyes and looked right into Ashish's. And the world shrank." (Page 249)

"You... You have the power to reduce me to vapor." (Page 249)


Content Ratings: highlight between ( ) for details

Romance: PG13 ( Kissing; making out; awareness of one another's body, but never goes further. )
Language: PG13 ( Light cursing such as pissed and screw this and crap and damn, as well as words like "For frick's sake;" acronyms such as STFU and BAMF. There is a shirt that has the logo "Nevertheless, She F*cking Persisted," written with the asterik. Some sexual terminology}
Violence: --
Other:  PG13 ( Frank talk about sex and whether or not one is ready; speculation about sex..)
C O V E R   D E S I G N:

I love this cover so much. It makes me smile every time I see it. There are also images on the back cover and the inside flaps!

First, I mean, purple is my favorite color, so of course, I always love purple books.

But also, I just really love all the photos they chose. They instant bring scenes from the book to life and they look so perfect. The cover and backflap even feature one of my favorite scenes in the entire book! Out of all the covers, this just might be my very favorite!
O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Author: Sandhya Menon
Release Date: May 14, 2019
Publisher: Simon Pulse / Simon & Schuster
Received: Purchased

Purchase Links:
BOOKSHOP *Order from and support your local indie or Wellesley Books, who is hosting the PINKY Virtual Launch Party! * 


Ashish Patel didn’t know love could be so…sucky. After he’s dumped by his ex-girlfriend, his mojo goes AWOL. Even worse, his parents are annoyingly, smugly confident they could find him a better match. So, in a moment of weakness, Ash challenges them to set him up.

The Patels insist that Ashish date an Indian-American girl—under contract. Per subclause 1(a), he’ll be taking his date on “fun” excursions like visiting the Hindu temple and his eccentric Gita Auntie. Kill him now. How is this ever going to work?

Sweetie Nair is many things: a formidable track athlete who can outrun most people in California, a loyal friend, a shower-singing champion. Oh, and she’s also fat. To Sweetie’s traditional parents, this last detail is the kiss of death.

Sweetie loves her parents, but she’s so tired of being told she’s lacking because she’s fat. She decides it’s time to kick off the Sassy Sweetie Project, where she’ll show the world (and herself) what she’s really made of.

Ashish and Sweetie both have something to prove. But with each date they realize there’s an unexpected magic growing between them. Can they find their true selves without losing each other?

O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Author: Sandhya Menon
Release Date: July 21, 2020
Publisher: Simon Pulse / Simon & Schuster
Received: For Review

Purchase Links:
BOOKSHOP *Order from and support your local indie or Wellesley Books, who is hosting the PINKY Virtual Launch Party! *


The follow-up to WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI and THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT SWEETIE follows Pinky and Samir as they pretend to date—with disastrous and hilarious results. 

Pinky Kumar wears the social justice warrior badge with pride. From raccoon hospitals to persecuted rock stars, no cause is too esoteric for her to champion. But a teeny-tiny part of her also really enjoys making her conservative, buttoned-up corporate lawyer parents cringe.

Samir Jha might have a few . . . quirks remaining from the time he had to take care of his sick mother, like the endless lists he makes in his planner and the way he schedules every minute of every day, but those are good things. They make life predictable and steady.

Pinky loves lazy summers at her parents’ Cape Cod lake house, but after listening to them harangue her about the poor decisions (aka boyfriends) she’s made, she hatches a plan. Get her sorta-friend-sorta-enemy, Samir—who is a total Harvard-bound Mama’s boy—to pose as her perfect boyfriend for the summer. As they bicker their way through lighthouses and butterfly habitats, sparks fly, and they both realize this will be a summer they'll never forget. 


You could win...

-  A copy of 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT PINKY by Sandhya Menon!

This giveaway is INTERNATIONAL
wherever Book Depository ships!

You must be at least 13 years old to enter or have a parent's permission!

Winner will be emailed and must respond within 48 hours, or a new winner will be chosen.

Enter now!

...Stop by tomorrow for another chance to win, and check out yesterday's post reviewing AS KISMET WOULD HAVE IT! for another chance to win!

You may have also missed these posts:

...Stop by tomorrow for another chance to win, and check out yesterday's Top Ten Tuesday post on Ten Thing I LOVE About Sandhya Menon! for another chance to win!

You may have also missed these posts:

*Street team interview with Sandhya Menon
*A Twist in the Tail Thursday featuring 
 the mythology in PINKY
 *Learn more about Mismatched-- an upcoming Netflix film centered around our beloved couple Dimple and Rishi!
*{Review} AS KISMET WOULD HAVE IT -- and read it now for FREE!

*{Review} LOVE AT FIRST FIGHT -- and read it now for FREE!