The biggest scandals happen off-camera…
Zara Das is Bollywood’s hottest property, her every move watched by the eyes of the press. Riding high from the success of a string of blockbusters, she has the world at her feet, but the scandal from her latest film threatens to dethrone her as Bollywood’s reigning queen.
So when superstar director Raj Dillon stages a lavish retelling of Pride and Prejudice, moving the shoot from Mumbai’s soundstages to London, Zara knows this is the role that could put her back on top. Coming with them are the Bollywood Wives – Jackie, Sasha, and Rani – bringing their own off-screen drama.
But behind the diamonds, designer clothes and seven-star hotels lies the truth of how Zara reached the top. And when a dead body is found in her hotel room, it seems that someone is determined to take Zara down – and will stop at nothing to expose her darkest secrets.
Zara has spent years running from her past. But now it’s caught up with her…
A sexy, gripping, scandalous novel set in the world of Bollywood – fans of Jackie Collins, Crazy Rich Asians and Lauren Weisberger won’t be able to put this one down.
Hello and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Bollywood Wives!
Many thanks to Tracy Fenton for having me on the tour, and of course to Hera Books and Alex Khan!
Zara Das, born Parineeta Grover, knows a thing or two about the sacrifices one must make to get to the top, and stay there. As a girl, she’s the ugly duckling: too dark-skinned, too fat, and female to top. It’s safe to say her parents don’t like her all that much, and much prefer her twin brother Dev, who’s thin and fair and will one day bring home a wife and her dowry, instead of costing his parents money, like little Pari will. When Dev disappears, the relationship between Pari and her parents sours even more, and determinedly, she finds herself a way from rags to riches, from unpopular, ugly Pari to famous, gorgeous Zara. That way, however, is quite the rocky road and Zara finds herself having to do things, and having things done to her, that are best left unspoken, things she’s not proud of and would rather forget if only she could. Zara’s chequered past is interwoven with the present-day events and instead of slowing down the story, it propels it forward and lifts it to a whole other dimension. These past events are crucial to understand present-day Zara and the choices she has made and is currently making, but also gives us an insight in Indian society. Fascinating stuff!
So present-day Zara is trying to come back from a mistake she made, a scandal she caused. There are threats on her life, and living in Mumbai, let alone shooting a movie in Mumbai, has become too dangerous. So when the opportunity to film in London comes along, and with it the chance to redeem herself in the eyes of her fanbase, she jumps at it. Being in London is not quite what she’d thought it would be, though. For one, the threat seems to have followed her to London. Then there’s Dan, head of her security detail, who she could definitely fall for, if she’d allow herself to (and why not, he’s perfect, if I wasn’t married and he were real, I’d know what to do!) There’s Minnie, the daughter of a Bollywood legend who would like nothing better than to upstage Zara (spoilt little brat that she is, if I were Zara, I would have strangled her!) And of course, there’s the Bollywood wives:
Jackie, wife of film director Raj. She’s an American, and not afraid to speak her mind. Living with Raj though, is not all people might think it is. Their marriage is in turmoil and being in London doesn’t seem to help. Jackie’s a bit of a smart-arse sometimes, but her heart’s in the right place.
Sasha, wife of actor Imran. Living with a man so popular and so very in the public eye is not always easy. Sasha has her own hopes and dreams, beyond being a mother, beyond being “the wife of” but does Imran love her enough to allow her to pursue her dreams, even when they don’t rhyme with his conservative opinions? I was rooting for Sasha every step of the way!
Rani, wife of actor and silver fox Ajay. Having got to her age, with children and grandchildren, she thinks she has her ducks in a row. But has she really? I loved Rani’s evolution throughout the story!
Beyond the glitter and glamour of Bollywood we find the stark truth of Indian society and Indian men stuck in their conservative ways and we follow a bunch of strong women going against the flow and trying to make their mark.
Bollywood Wives is a melting pot of thriller, crime, feminism, Real Housewives and Sex & the City, dressed in a sari, and yes, I realise how weird that sounds, but it works! Don’t take my word for it though, check out the other stops on the blog tour!