Monday, October 25, 2021

Book Review: "The Other Man" by Farhad J. Dadyburjor

In The Other Man, boy meets girl…and then he meets boy.

At age 38, Ved is truly an eligible bachelor. He’s handsome (many say he resembles George Clooney), he’s smart, and he is in line to run his family’s electronics empire. His mother knows any woman would be lucky to have him as a husband, and she’s determined to find him a suitable wife. She doesn’t understand why he keeps rejecting all the women she suggests!

The thing is, Ved doesn’t want to disappoint his mother, but he is living as a closeted gay man. Being gay is a crime in India, and he knows that telling his parents the truth will break their hearts. He has already fallen in love and had his heart broken once, so what’s the point anyway?

But to keep the peace, he agrees to go out with the vivacious Disha. She’s smart, beautiful, independent, and her family could be an excellent business connection. He’d be foolish not to get engaged—who cares if he doesn’t love her?

And then he meets Carlos, an American vacationing in Mumbai. Carlos is everything he could want, and he feels alive whenever he’s with him. With Carlos he dreams of a life he never thought he could have, and he’s finally ready to take the first step. But there’s the small matter of his engagement…

This was a sweet, thought-provoking story, one which so many LGBTQIA+ people all over the world have dealt with. It’s a reminder that it’s sometimes so much harder to find the courage to live the life you want instead of the one others want you to live. I'll admit I wasn't completely enamored of Ved's behavior in the book, but I can't say I blame him.

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