I enjoyed The Grand Plan to Fix Everything (my thoughts) by Uma Krishnaswami for the way it presented the mixing of cultures and the inevitable struggle a person living in two different ones experiences. I was delighted to learn there would be a sequel and even more delighted when I was able to read an e-galley of The Problem with Being Slightly Heroic from the publisher.
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Dini is back from India—with Bollywood star Dolly in tow! But life in the States isn’t all rose petal milk shakes…Dini
and Maddie, very best friends, are back in the same country at the same
time! Better still, Dolly Singh, the starriest star in all of
Bollywood, is in America too. Dini’s only just returned from India, and
already life is shaping up to be as delicious as a rose petal milk
shake. Perfect. Then why can’t she untie the knot in her stomach?
Because so much can go wrong when a big star like Dolly is in town. All
Dini has to do is make sure Dolly has everything she needs, from a rose
petal milk shake to her lost passport to…a parade? And an elephant?
It’s time to think. What Would Dolly Do? If Dini can’t figure it out,
Dolly might take matters into her own hands—and that will surely lead to
the biggest mess of all!
The first book saw Dini struggling to fit into her new world and missing her best friend, Maddie. This sequel finds her back in the US on a visit. Initially she is struggling to reconcile who she now is with this old world and fitting her and Maddie nicely together again. I would have enjoyed it if the story had focused on this a bit more. Dolly has come to town too though and, as with everything Dolly does, she overshadows the other characters. Dini, Maddie, and pretty much everyone else are there to run circles around the circus show that is the movie premiere and Dolly.
I was disappointed in how much of the book focused on one crazy plot twist after another without giving us much insight into the characters or their motivations. It is an entertaining read though and I think readers who enjoyed the first book will want to read this one. Like the first book, it reads very much like a Bollywood movie.
I read an e-galley provided by the publisher, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, via Edelweiss. The Problem with Being Slightly Heroic is available for purchase August 13.