By Sudeep Nagarkar. Grade B.
The very aesthetically designed cover, despite the sparkle overload, comes across as very pleasing to the target market: that is, outgoing, smart women in their teens and tweens who have a soft corner for gool ol’ romances, Karan Johar style. The book indeed is another love story amongst the multiple others that have flooded the Indian market but it does create a niche for itself by encompassing the multitude of other emotions that are entwined with the feeling of love – envy, possessiveness, hatred, lust, insecurity amongst others.
A brand new love story and a story of friendship from the bestselling author of Few Things Left Unsaid and That’s the Way We Met! It will take every emotions to one step higher.
Why don’t we feel the moment when we fall in love but always remember when it ends? Akash is young, single, and conservative with a preference for girls with brains than in miniskirts. One day, he runs into free-spirited Aleesha at a local discotheque. A Mass Media student, Aleesha is a pampered brat, the only child of her parents who dote on her. This brief meeting leads them to exchange their BlackBerry pins and they begin chatting regularly. As BlackBerry plays cupid, they fall in love. When they hit a rough patch in their life, Aditya, Akash’s close pal, guides them through it.
But just when they are about to take their relationship to the next level, a sudden misfortune strikes. Can Aditya bring Akash’s derailed life back on track?
It Started with a Friend Request is a true story which will make you believe in love like you never knew before.
It Started with a Friend Request is a very relatable tale where two youngsters, Akash and Aleesha bump into each other at a disco and exchange their BBM pins during their conversation and leave with a promise to be in touch. And that begins their tale of friendship which gradually turns into something more as Blackberry plays Cupid for them. The simplicity of the saga of love and friendship that the book tries to envelope is something almost everyone of us might have encountered in our lives sometime or the other, directly or indirectly. All the characters are well defined and create a place for themselves in the novel and do not get lost midway. Akash and Aleesha are the classic boy/girl next-door, and the author uses simple, sweet words to write about their fledgling romance. It’s a love story in the true sense, sometimes almost nauseatingly so (refer to the line, “They loved each other so much that if angels were watching them from heaven, they would have been left stunned”).
It’s a typical Bollywood film come to life, and there is no sub-plot to detract the readers. Those who enjoy their mushy romances served straight up without pretence will like it. Others should stay away.