Saturday, February 27, 2010

India embraces Mills & Boon

Mills & Boon has come to India, and its romantic novels featuring Indian love interests are being embraced by the middle class. Jerry Pinto looks at the genre that it is finally taking root in a country that has been modest about amorous entanglements.

He’s tall, dark and handsome. She’s beautiful, doe-eyed and chaste. His eyes flame when he sees her. She wonders if it is wrong to feel “this way”. For decades, Indian middle-class women grew up reading about men with hard thighs and women who didn’t even know how beautiful they were. Of course, they were all white people, although a Latin lover might sometimes be permitted, so long as he owned a castle in Spain.
The good news is: Mills & Boon has come to India.

Last year, the world’s largest publisher of romantic fiction ran a contest to discover new talent, and Milan Vohra won it with a short story called Love Asana, in which Shioli Dewan, a yoga instructor (height: 5ft 1in; eyes: delicious warm honey-brown; hair: a rich, dark auburn mane that tumbles to her shoulders in careless abandon) finds love with one of her students, Sujay (height: 6ft; legs: long, lithe; hair: charming jet-black hair that flip-flops any old way). The catch is that he’s 28; she’s 30 and a battle-scarred veteran of the love wars.

Full report here The National

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