Tuesday, February 25, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: Reet Singh's Scorched By His Fire (M&B Indian Author Collection)


I was on holiday as I read Reet Singh’s debut M&B Romance “Scorched By His Fire” so my mindset was already to relax and be swept away on a journey, an adventure. A romance!
I was.
Mita Ramphul (weird last name) is a feisty schoolteacher who probably has many teenage boys crushing after her, she is that hot. Tanay Devkumar (hottie alert) is Sam Spade reborn and with an attitude to boot. From the first scene onwards, I kept expecting him to wear a bowler and ask for Effie! Their chemistry is undeniable and that’s what works for “Scorched by His Fire.”
Set in balmy Mauritius, Reet gives us a wonderful bird’s view of life on the island and skillfully weaves in different and scenic locations that immediately pulled this reader in. And the lead characters’ interactions from the opening scene are, to say the least, explosive. Tanay and Mita do not get along at all, and yet are thrown together through very interesting circumstance.
It is a classic story of misunderstanding: he thinks she is a home wrecker (of his sister’s home, no less!) and she thinks he is too arrogant for words (Bogie, recall). Clashes abound but so does passion; as it does in romances. He wants to keep her away from her alleged “l’amour” his brother-in-law Sam and pretends to be her loving fiancé for the same reason! Mita, who can’t stand Tanay is forced to go along with the lie because she wants to save her mom the embarrassment of having an alleged adulteress for a daughter and because Sam is her childhood bestie. Rocking the boat is not in her plans.
Add an accident, a family gathering, a family mystery that surprise! requires the good detective’s help. All of which further entangles the web of lies and brings Mita and Tanay back home to India. With a sexy stopover in Dubai. Deft touch by the way, with that, Reet.
Reet’s story really comes home in Delhi where every nook and corner is described with loving detail, before it goes to bustling Kolkata and the final mystery is solved!
As a romance it holds its own, with a few interesting plot twists, but what this reader really liked about “Scorched by His Fire” is that it doesn’t shy away from sex. The title suggests a steamy read and it really is...especially a scene involving a choli and mirror. But it also has a strong storyline that reaches a satisfactory ending. If there are a few weak threads to the story, they do not take anything away from the overall burning romance that is at the heart of every Mills and Boon novel.
“Scorched by His Fire” is the perfect holiday read, or if you aren’t on holiday, read it so it takes you on one.
Aarti. V. Raman aka Writer Gal

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