Now gorging on chocolates, retail therapy and binge-drinking are useful to cheer one up, sure, but what you really need is something that can lift you up without giving you a hangover, a major dent in your bank balance or adding inches to your waistline. Our advice? Pick up a book that is funny, sassy, bittersweet and poignant to cheer you up. These 10 Indian books are our top picks for when you’re feeling low and need something to smile about.
1. Where Girls Dare by Bhavna Chauhan
A take on life as a trainee inside the Officers’ Training Academy, the transition of a group of girls from simple cadets to officers is full of hilarious situations and lively conversations. Reading this will brighten your gloomy day and help you put your game face on.
Price: Rs 167. Buy it here
2. The Bad Boy’s Guide to the Good Indian Girl by Annie Zaidi and Smriti Ravindra
This book is a compilation of many stories set in small-town India, where “your business is my business” and “a compromising situation” can be something as lame as a guy playfully tugging at a girl’s hair. Despite the suburban backdrop, the metro-born-and-bred girl can relate to the stories all too well. Witty and poignant at the same time, this book stays with you long after you have finished reading it.
Price: Rs 248. Buy it here
3. Almost Single by Advaita Kala
29, not married, working at a five-star hotel as a Guest Relations Manager, at present not dating, mom and mausi
on a mission to marry her off, crazy BFFs, crazier outings and ex-boyfriends, a tyrannical and philandering boss, a gorgeous guest at the hotel…these are the things that make up the protagonist’s life. Need we say any more? If you haven’t got a copy yet, rush to your nearest bookstore now.
Price: Rs 195. Buy it here
4. Right Fit Wrong Shoe and Wrong Means Right End by Varsha Dixit
These two books revolve around the lives and loves of besties Nandini and Sneha. Sneha might come across as the go-getter in the first book, but in the sequel one learns of Nandini’s determined nature too. Full of drama and hilariously narrated, these books are thoroughly enjoyable reads. Also you learn the art of talking slang around kids!
Price: Rs 104 and Rs 89. Buy here
5. The Hindi-Bindi Club by Monica Pradhan
The mother-daughter bond cannot be described adequately in words, but this book comes pretty close. Full of meaningful realizations and aww-moments, the real USP of this book is the insight it provides on cross-cultural interactions and relationships. It’s a beautiful novel that you absolutely must read. (P.S.: Did you know that “lavan tod”
is the Marathi equivalent of “You may now kiss the bride”? And that the book has several delicious recipes hidden in its chapters?)
Price: Rs 250. Buy it here
6. Aftertaste by Namita Devidayal
This book has been described by Shobhaa De as “delicious”, and you cannot help but agree with her once you’ve read it. It’s the story of the Todarmal family, bigshots in the mithai
business and a family that is glued together by money and by Mummyji, “a benevolent, flatulent witch, who knitted sweaters for everyone, could bargain like a banshee, and never ceased to remind her daughters-in-law that their husbands sucked on her sumptuous untoned milk for many years before finding succour in their nipples.” What happens when Mummyji is rendered comatose? The language is lucid and the writer’s skill at capturing details wonderful. A must-read.
Price: Rs 199. Buy it here
7. Heartbreaks & Dreams! by Parul A. Mittal
Girls are a minority at IIT. So ever wondered how life in an IIT can be for a girl? Well, meet Tanu, who is uncomfortable around guys - and as luck would have it, the ONLY girl in her department at IIT. There have been several offerings from men about life in the various engineering colleges of India; but this book is a refreshing departure, written by a woman and from a girl’s point of view. (Parul Mittal, incidentally, is a batch mate of Chetan Bhagat.)
Price: Rs 55. Buy it here
8. Sumthing of a Mocktale by Soma Das
Kaya holds your hand and takes you along with her as she steps inside JNU to discover the unofficial dress-code of kurta-chappal-jhola
and a mini-India that is segregated into regional sub-groups. Together you embark on a rollercoaster ride with a fascinating cast of characters: the behenji
, that guy who keeps saying he doesn’t study much, the bestie whose keeps having silly crushes, aspiring IAS officers whose behaviour change on cracking the exams, that girl who declares all boys are her brothers, that jealous girl who will never share her notes, that irritating senior, and many, many more. All of this made super-readable by the naughty undertone of the apparently matter-of-fact narration.
Price: Rs 80. Buy it here
9. The Zoya Factor by Anuja Chauhan
Meet advertising executive Zoya, who ends up becoming the good luck charm for the Indian cricket team! As the tale proceeds, Goddess Zoya gets wooed by cola majors and international cricket boards and even some cricketers! What happens next - well, that is for you to find out!
Price: Rs 192. Buy it here
10. The Marriage Bureau for Rich People by Farahad Zama
Bored with retirement, Mr Ali opens a marriage bureau and finds himself tangled in a tale where people pursue their search for love and a suitable life partner. Various kinds of marriages - late marriage, inter-caste marriage, re-marriage - all have to be undertaken and arranged by the bureau!
Price: Rs 200. Buy it here
And a bonus! Not Indian, but it touches your heart all the same.
11. The Diary of a Social Butterfly by Moni Mohsin
This is the journal of a Pakistani socialite, who is an acute observer of high society, misspells without any qualms, is an avid party-goer, shuns “do number ka maal”
and who remains utterly unfazed, no matter what is going on in Pakistan and the world. This social satire is hugely entertaining, and leaves you laughing even after you are done with the book.
Price: Rs 251. Buy it here
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MUST-READ: 23 Books Every Indian Child (And You) Must Read Want to know more?
There are certain moments that come in a girl's life that leave you feeling more disheartened than ever. Learning that your ex is getting married; you not getting credit for a deal you worked your ass off on; a fight with your bestie.. the list is endless.