There seems to be a lot of problems lately. Weird prototypes have been popping up in books and in 70mm that makes it tad bit difficult to jump the gun and throw caution to the winds. Because when cliches start forming, perhaps it is time to change the tide.
Earlier there was the girl waiting for her prince charming and liberally getting her heart broken along the way – she had that one guy she would fall in love with who would turn out to be completely wrong, chauvinistic and borderline evil. And then the good Samaritan would come along and save the day and the lady.
Now there is the ‘new age chick’, late twenties, heartbreak veteran, calls the shots when it comes to dropping the pants – where, when, how et all; and yes, still falls in love with someone who is pretty much ‘wrong’ till the second last chapter. The last chapter is for PDA and some ‘Indianised’ sex.
Two books – I Kissed A Frog by Rupa Gulab and Sophie Says by Judy Balan morphs into the bookshelves with almost the same tenor of thought (Or so we think – counter arguments welcome). While Gulab declares – ‘Girls aren’t made of sugar and spice and everything nice... well, perhaps some girls are, but those are certainly not the girls you meet in I Kissed A Frog’. Balan styles her protagonist as the break-up coach. Wait! We’ve heard that before! Heartbreaker – Jodi Breaker much? But then Sophie doesn’t break people up – she is the girl who tells you to suck it up and start living – the Indian version of He’s Just Not That Into You.
By the looks of it, we have summed up both the books in a paragraph, but that is not entirely correct. Both books come with a refreshing air and it can induce a quiet chuckle now and then or a ‘Shit! That is SO me!’ moment in most women – but the buck stops there (another cliché). Neither book has nothing path-breaking to offer – either on the relationship front or the style front. We have all read this before, we know the language, we know what’s next.
From a girl who falls in love with her fat best friend who she has ignored for the longest time (in I kissed A Frog) to the girl who ‘hires’ a fake-boyfriend to stop aunties from getting after her life (Sophie Says). All is hunky-dory till the female mush comes in, the tears, the heartache and the chaos of falling in love with two diametrically different guys. Clichés galore. It is irritating that despite all the woman power in question – all girls seem to have the secret desire to be swept off their feet, to be taken care of and to be loved to bits as they bear children. So much for the new woman who can kiss without much fore-thought and live with a heartache over some good vodka and tonic water. The new bitter ugly truth is – women want to have their hearts in their vaginas – but they aren’t entirely sure how to work that out yet.
Pick I Kissed A Frog over Sophie Says – I give you two reasons. One – it is stupid to let two perfectly hot guys go, and two – who the hell bonds over Oreo cheesecake!!???