Bootie and the Beast by Falguni Kothari

Bootie and the BeastBootie and the Beast by Falguni Kothari
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Rating : 3.5 stars

I don’t read much of romance , which is why I was wondering if I’d do justice to Falguni’s book , but I needn’t have worried. I enjoyed reading the Bootie and the Beast. Diya Mathur is fun , zesty , full of herself (in a good way)and a supermodel; Krish Menon is smouldering hot , high-flying CFO  who is  extremely focussed and non-fussy .So what happens when you throw these two people who have a history of crackling chemistry between them together? Sparks are bound to fly and mean things are meant to be said 🙂 More importantly , magic is bound to be created!

I am not going to get into the plot because you can easily get that out of the synopsis. I liked Krish’s characterisation a lot. His quiet intensity was the perfect foil for a slightly over-the-top Diya. But don’t peg Diya as a shrieky heroine just yet. She also loves to cook and has a few other talents up her sleeve. I loved how Kris’s ideology is rooted in tradition ,even after having lived abroad for so long. Diya , though initially came across as a spoilt-brat , made me like her with her spunky retorts and surprisingly ‘simple-girl’ ideas.    

Falguni’s writing is fun and cheeky. However , what she excels in are the intimate scenes between the duo. The pages sizzle because of the chemistry she has created between Kris and Diya. I also loved the casual banter between the two. The book has all the ingredients of an M&B. I totally loved the ending- it was super fun!

Overall, a nice read you can curl up with when you are having a ‘blah’ day 🙂  

Thanks Falguni for sending this book my way 🙂          

View all my reviews

Chai pe bulaiya (part 1) : Meet Falguni Kothari, author of Bootie and the Beast

Introducing a new segment on the blog called Chai pe Bulaiya.. featuring writers and authors , their books , their writing processes, their pet-peeves and much more…  
Today’s rendezvous is with Author Falguni Kothari , who has penned two books, It’s Your Move, Wordfreak and the recently released Bootie and the Beast. Intriguing titles, right? Let’s get  to know the lady more..
1.       Tell us a little bit about yourself. Also include some pet peeves, crazy/fun stuff about yourself.
Hello! I am a woman and I write books. Fun, flirty romance novels that will leave you with a happy buzz at the end of the read. I have dabbled in urban fantasy and have a series in mind with one manuscript ready and waiting to be considered. So, yeah, I write books. J
Pet peeves: kitty parties with non-compatible guest-lists who won’t shut up and idiots who don’t fan SRK. That brings us to my craziness…I am a die-hard fan-girl. I get seriously star-struck by some actors/writers/certain famous personalities. I have been known to go completely cuckoo over Shah RukhKhan, Gerard Butler, Diana Gabaldon, Tom Hiddleston and Benedict Cumberbatch. What can I say? I love stories and the people who bring them to life.
2.       Tell us about your book/books

My new romance, BOOTIE AND THE BEAST is a Harlequin Mills and Boon release and as you can guess with its title, it’s a nod to the traditional fairytale. The heroine, nicknamed Beauty, is not a village Belle in my story but rather a super famous supermodel and is in super trouble. She is ordered by her father to hide in shame in the hero and longtime family friend’s lair, for a week or two until the gossip about her dies down. The hero, Krish “the Beast” Menon, has been denying his feelings for Diya for a long time and is forced to confront them, living in close proximity as they are. It’s a story about family, expectations, denial and how the past can affect your present and the present your future if you don’t have the guts to face it.

Watch trailer of Bootie and the Beast..


Buy Bootie and the Beast here

She’s having a giveaway that ends in a few days.. Go sign up soon! 

Both Diya and Krish debuted in my debut romance, IT’S YOUR MOVE, WORDFREAK!, as secondary characters. They made such an impression that even before I finished writing Wordfreak I knew I would tell Diya and Krish’s story too.
3.       What inspired you to become a novelist?
I am a voracious reader. So, when a few years ago—at a time in my life when I had more and more time to myself with my children both while not fully grown, but independent enough that I did not need to run after them—my mother kind of pushed me to get off my un-ambitious butt and do something, I decided to take some online classes in literature. What I ended up taking was a short course on writing a romance novel. It was amazing and fun and so fulfilling that I continued writing until I had a full-length manuscript in my hands. I don’t think I ever intended to become an author. I just did. It’s as if I tripped over a soccer ball and fell down the writer’s rabbit hole.
4.       Is any character from your books based on anyone in your real life?
Not really. Though I might bring in some experiences or ideas from real-life situations in the novel.
5.       Who are some of your favorite authors?
I have many, many authors to thank for the wonderful worlds they’ve shown me: Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Diana Gabaldon, J.D Robb/ Nora Roberts, Sherrilyn Kenyon, J. R Ward, George R R Martin, Megan Hart, InduSunderesan, ChitraDivakaruni, DevduttPattanaik. I love many more but these are ones who have touched my heart the most.
6.       What are the best and the worst parts about being an author?
The best: that I can stay in bed and work in my pajamas for life.
Worst: my eyes straining and burning and sleepless nights when the plot or character refuses to leave my head and find its own lodgings far, far away.
7.       Tell us about your writing / editing process. When do you normally write? Any lucky charms that you believe make you write better? 😉  
Try as I might, I can’t write a chapter without editing it after. It slows down my writing speed, I know, but I can’t seem to break myself of the habit. I have to have a pretty smooth chapter before I can go on to the next. Research and editing I usually do during the day. But my creative writing happens early in the morning. I’ll wake anytime after midnight, because the damn plot or character will not allow me to sleep, and write till dawn.No charms. I write on my bed the best with my dog sleeping by my side J
8.       How do you unwind after a rigorous writing session?
Sleep. Go out with family and friends and have an actual conversation. Get my hair done. Get my nails done.
9.       How did you feel when you received the author’s copy to your first book?
I squeed! It was better than holding my children for the first time as there was no physical pain involved in the delivery.
     What pointers would you like to give to aspiring authors? How easy or difficult was getting published for you?
Sit down. Write. Write. Write. Even if its rubbish for a while. You can edit rubbish. You cannot edit a blank page. (It’s advice I got from another author and it’s so true.)It was easier than most for me to get published for my two romances. I think my fantasy will be the one that will test my patience and endurance. But I am determined to get that story told, one way or another.
1    What’s on the menu next?
I have just started writing a story about three soul mates. First time that I’m using first person POV, so it’s a new challenge. It’s a love story too, but I’m not sure if it will have a happy ending. We’ll see what the characters want from their lives J

Thank you so much for dropping by for tea, Falguni. Wishing you loads of luck for your new book and looking forward to reading it. Looking forward to your book shelf pics too 🙂  

Here’s an excerpt from Bootie and the Beast

Bootie Mathur: Fairytale or Flirty-tale?
The digitally manipulated picture beneath the headline was hideous. The pose and the burlap were the only two things true to the original Pomp Adore cover. In this pic, her hair looked unwashed and unkempt, her eyes wild and scary. Her blood-red lips were peeled apart in a facsimile of vampire fangs about to rip into the bow-tied, fungus-ridden bootie in her hand. Her abdomen was no longer defined, as she was extremely pregnant in the picture. The rose tattoo had been colored black and vicious-looking thorns grew out of the stalk, digging maliciously into the green-veined skin of her distended stomach.
 DiyaMathur swallowed the panic threatening to choke her ever since she’d lost her mind and completely demolished her already notorious reputation to save a dude in distress. That she wasn’t a knight-in-shining-armor and that Hasaan was more than capable of saving his own skin was of no consequence. Her quixotic goodwill had reared up, mixed in with a teensy bit of guilt—after all, she was partly to blame for the fiasco—and thrown itself in front of the mega merger about to put a dampner on Hasaan’s carefree life. But even knowing she’d done the right thing didn’t stop Diya’s stomach from churning like the giant cement mixer she spotted on a construction site by the road. She prayed she wouldn’t really have to use the stupid vomit bags the Beast had planted as a joke.
            Fairytales will ruin you, Dadimahad said in a dour tone supplemented by a dire shake of her head, when Diya was only six and had refused to wear anything but her glittery-blue Sleeping Beauty costume forever or until Prince Charming arrived bearing new clothes. Diya hadn’t believed her cantankerous old grandmother then and she wouldn’t believe it now, even with the public disapproval of her fake pregnancy looming over her head. Fairytales were her lucky charms, her survival mantras. They could never harm her. In fact, they helped put life in perspective.
            Example: the Sleeping Beauty phase, which she’d pretty much passed in a haze of denial waiting for Prince Charming—aka the Beast—to grow up. It had ended the night of her twenty-first birthday when she’d realized the magnitude of her self-delusion. Soon after the figurative eye-opener, she’d announced to the world of her ambition to be a fashion model. Actually, she’d only announced it to her best friend, Alisha Menon—sorry, Chawla, now that Lee-sha was married to Mr. Hunk Charming, Aryan Chawla. Anyway, Diya had whispered her plans in Lee-sha’s ears only because she’d been mortally afraid of what her dentist parents—Kamal and LubnaMathur—and gynecologist sister—PriyaShroffnéeMathur—would say about another vocation switch—her one hundred and eighth one. Soon-to-be-advocate Lee-sha hadn’t laughed at the proclamation nor acknowledged it. She’d simply hung up the phone.
            Not at all put off by her BFF’s rudeness, Diya traipsed forth in her new plans and more or less parked her size-two bottom at Mumbai’s Lips Inc modeling agency until they took notice of her. It hadn’t taken them long to notice. Really.What was there not to notice about five-feet-nine-inches of sleek limbs, flawless skin and picture-perfect features? Diya knew what she looked like and knew there wasn’t a man, woman, child or animal in the world who overlooked her. (Not even the Beast, though he did try, poor knave.) Anyway, Rocky Currimbhoy, co-founder of Lips Inc, had rocket-launched her career in a matter of weeks, much like how Cinderella’s fairy godmother had swirled a magic wand about and transformed the dowdy cinder-sweeper into the belle of the ballroom. Not that there’d been any dowdiness to begin with in Diya, just a bit of naiveté she’d scrubbed off since.
            Fast-forward eight years and Beauty Mathur honest-to-goodness loved to strike a pose. Any pose. Even the ones that made one’s muscles scream in protest or blood rush to the brain causing a migraine. Her super busy model’s life suited her, incredibly perfectly, unlike some of the other vocations she’d tried—and (sigh) failed at—in her many years of being an adult. Beauty was her thing. Fashion was her passion. And she was damn good at it. If she weren’t, HasaanJabbir would never want her for Scheherazade.
            For years, she’d been a Rapunzel trapped in the tower of professional ignominy, surrounded by an impossible wall of overachievers—case in point, the Beast on her left. But unlike the incarcerated, longhaired princess, Diya had quit waiting for a princely rescue. She’d scaled the wall herself, waved her tresses about and changed the course of her life.
            It had been either that or enforced domestic blah with one of the men her family had paraded in front of her like a clichéd bachelorette reality show.
            An arranged marriage was a fate worse than death. A fate soon to be realized for poor Hasaan, Diya thought. For her too, if her “situation” didn’t get sorted out soon and to her family’s satisfaction. Her father had called last night, yelling his head off at her gullibility. When she’d tried to explain her knightly reasons, instead of being pacified and calling her a heroine, he’d started his matrimonial threatening and blackmailing again. And this time, her mother and sister had chimed in like some horrible squeaky chorus. The sparkly fairytale was rapidly losing its glamour—not for her, for them.
            Almighty gods in heaven! Are any of you listening? Help me out of this, please!
            “Stop browsing through rubbish, Diya. You’ll give yourself an ulcer,” said Krish, without looking at her as he maneuvered the SUV through a light patch of traffic.
            With a last pout at her nightmare version, Diya shut the tablet, closed its pink leather cover and slid the device back into her rose-pink handbag.
            The Beast was behaving himself. It was both a shock and a relief to her. Apart from the two mildly sarcastic sentences he’d barked out in front of Hasaan, the derogatory nickname and comment about morning sickness, he’d been quiet, maybe a bit broody. But that was Krish. He was a brooder. He brooded on a daily basis with no provocation what-so-ever.
            He dropped his hand to the gearshift when they stalled at a signal, loosely capping the stick. His hand was broad, dark and capable-looking, the back of it lightly dusted with hair. A sexy little vein pushed up from his middle knuckle and ran all the way up his arm, bare beneath his pushed-up sleeves. Diya dragged her eyes away from the flexed bicep to his face.
            “Talk to me.” His grim, laser-beam gaze made her tingle even through his shades.
            The sunglasses would be prescription. They were aviator-style with thin metal frames and sat well on his broad-boned face. She could make out the general shape of his eyes behind the dark glass. Krish had the Menon eyes, large and brown and soulful. His eyebrows slashed, thick and straight above the metal frames and as Diya stared at him, they rose high in question. She regularly nagged him to get Lasik done or at least wear contacts. He ignored the advice just like he ignored every other fashion tip she gave him—totally his loss in her humble opinion.
            The traffic began to move and Krish turned his attention to the road with a low growl of irritation, giving Diya further opportunity to study his profile. He was a tall man. And was dark—his skin well hydrated and blemish-free. He had a really sexy jawline and a noble-sized nose. Even so, no one in the fashion world would call Krish good-looking. They would vote him as average or having a face infused with character—a really polite way of saying he was nothing much to look at. But did that stop the shivers of undiluted attraction rippling through her whenever he looked at her? NO!
            Thank heavens the Beast had no clue he affected her this way. Thank heavens he lived thousands of miles away or her retarded shivering would’ve surely given her away. Thank heavens no one in either of their families suspected she hadn’t at all got over the crush she’d had on him since forever. If they found out, they would pity her. If Krish found out, he would pity her and it would make things even more awkward than it sometimes was between them. Worse, he’d think it was his duty to see her happily settled in a relationship and like he’d done once before at her father’s behest, either propose to her himself or introduce her to his wonderful and eligible friends.
            It might come to that anyway, what with the marriage madness afflicting her father. Daddy behaved as if turning thirty—which she would in August—without a husband and toddler to tend was a crime fit for the Record Book of Disgraced Mathurs.It wasn’t her fault she was unlucky in the love and wedded bliss departments. Unlike her parents, her sister and her BFF, some people like Hasaan and herself…
            “Diya?” Krish prodded again, gently squeezing her hand this time.
            She sighed. She had to confess some time, didn’t she?
            “It all started with the stupid bootie,” she began and quickly laid out the whole silly story in sequence.
Connect with Falguni 

Stay tuned to the next author profile in a few days! 

Yay! finally..

I grew up devouring Mills and Boons at such alarming rates that at one point my dad was concerned about my bankrupting him . I haven’t read an M& B in ages , but  still have fond memories of  curling up all night and tucking into stories of blue-eyed Timothy having a steamy escapades with blonde Lucy and such like. And now.. I have my own version of Timothy and Lucy (just that they aren’t blue-eyed or eat scones for  breakfast or are blonde)  going into print this weekend.My first novella will hopefully hit the bookstores by Valentine’s day!My publisher just sent me a snapshot of what the cover would look like  and I thought I’d share it with you guys. 

So yeah, “Seven across” is the name of the book .. and is a desi romance novella. Hell, ya..that’s my name on the cover ! I wrote this book when rejections were pouring in for my novel and a strange feeling of unrest gripped me through the one month I wrote this book in. A year later, this baby is ready to be born and I feel like a  new mother , all anxious and jittery.

The blurb behind the book reads.. 

Small town girl Ramya finds the big city fascinating, especially so her boss Abhay. A make-over cannot erase her essential persona, but the attractive Thomas does make her feel the first stirrings of a romance. Abhay and Thomas are good friends, yet the undercurrents are far from positive. The two share a tormented history and Ramya discovers there is more to both men than meets the eye. Thomas does make her heart beat faster and Abhay is not what he seems. Yet Ramya feels the pull of attraction to Abhay as well. 

Who is Mr. Right?

The book will be available on Flipkart and IndiPlaza online and at bookstores like Landmark, Higginbothams , Connexions etc. Indiplaza will probably run a Valentine’s day offer ,where you can order the book at a deep discount.You can find more info about the Red Romance imprint of Desi romances on the Publisher’s website (
Please order the book,spread the word around on blogosphere… and save a starving(!), impoverished(!!) writer ;-). Oh, another thing.. I don’t have an FB page for the book yet and am using the much-neglected and bastardized personal account for all communication regarding the book. So if you are on FB, please add me on..Gosh! I am sounding more impoverished by the minute.

Edited: You’ll find the link to my FB page on the sidebar. I figured how to do this after my drama!As far as technology is concerned ,I am clueless and am starting to turn into my parents!

The french connection

To me a book is a window into possibilities, people and customs that exist elsewhere –something that I would never have had an opportunity to knowing otherwise. So, when Rosy Thornton mailed me about reviewing her book, The Tapestry of Love, I was thrilled. I had never read a book based in the French countryside before.I fell in love with the book right from the minute I opened the package and set my eyes on the cover of the book: An old door painted white with splotches of greenery around it.

The book starts languorously with Rosy describing the Transhumance, a bi-yearly ritual common to the mountain regions of France where sheep are herded up and down the slopes of the mountains depending on the time of the year.During the autumn transhumance sheep are herded from the grasslands in the mountains down the slopes to the valleys and during the spring transhumance the process is reversed. Catherine is a divorcee who moves to a hamlet in the Ce’vennes Mountains from London.She is an empty Nester with her children, Lexie and Tom grown up and busy with their own lives . She decides to start her own business as a seamstress in the idyllic rural environment.

At the Ce’vennes, Catherine has to contend with loneliness, stiff neighbors and horrible weather. We are introduced to the Bouschets, Madame Volipere, the Merriels and Patrick Castagnol. Her neighbors are gracious and invite Catherine over for tea and meals , but their requests are formal. Catherine strikes up an easy friendship with Patrick as their conversations cover subjects as varied as bee-keeping, boars ,lepers and saints. As paragraph upon paragraph rolled by describing Catherine’s life, I could feel her loneliness myself. But the narrative is not depressing at any point.I loved Catherine’s character-strong and warm.Despite her divorce, she is not bitter about her husband seeing another woman .

Catherine embraces her new life selling her cushion covers and upholstering furniture to the locals . Everything rolls by smoothly until her sister, Bryonne decides to visit her. Now, Bryonne is everything Catherine is not- perky and leads an extremely successful life as a partner in a London law firm.During Bryonne’s visit Catherine realizes that both of them are falling for the same man. But the man has secrets that he holds close to his heart himself. The rest of the story is about how Catherine befriends the neighbors, becomes an integral part of the neighborhood, how she strives to get her enterprise registered and makes sense of the feelings she has towards Patrick.

The strong points of the book are the depth with which each character is etched out,Rosy’s lovely words and the information on life in the mountains. I particularly loved Lexie,the journalist daughter who tires of her writing jobs in a jiffy and constantly seeks something else to excite her. Somehow, the neighbors didn’t make much of an impression on me and I wonder if it was done on purpose.Rosy’s love for good food and the mountainside shows through the pages of the book.

My only issue with the book was the length-400 odd pages.Somewhere in the middle the narrative sags a bit . I would have also wanted to learn more about the finer points of making tapestries.But things soon heat up and to know more you need to grab the book and read it :-).

Let me leave you with one of the passages I particularly loved

“Catherine inhaled.It was the smell of the valley always had in snatches, the acidity of woodsmoke and behind it everywhere the darker, mellower scent of what had been there before the settlement of man.Earth and water and rock , and spent leaves returning to the earth.”

Overall, a simple love story set in a beautiful pastoral background. I’ll give it a 3.5 /5. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good love story and am looking forward to reading more of her work.

Thanks Rosy for sending me this book to review.

A bit about the author: Rosy Thornton teaches at Cambridge University and lives with her daughters and partner in a village near the University. She also has three more books – More than Love Letters, Hearts and Minds and Crossed Wires to her credit.

For more info hop over to Rosy’s website here.You’ll be pleasantly surprised to see a lot of traditional Ce’vennes recipes there.