With You I Dance by Aarti V Raman is a unique novel that has everything special in it be it the characters or the plot. I got this book from The Book Club in return of an honest review. Lets get into the details:
Cover- THe cover is colourful and has an image of a guy and the girl standing closely to each other. The visual please our eyes and we want to know more about it. The colourful cover add positive vibes in our moods and we can start it on a happy note.
Title- With You I Dance is an intriguing title that gives us a vague picture that it has something to do with a dance, maybe a story related to a dance competition. But when we open the book and turn the pages our image gets clearer.
Blurb- Once upon a time Meera Sagar had everything-the perfect job as a principal ballerina and a man who loved her as much as she loved him. But tragedy struck on the night before her biggest performance, forcing her to do the one thing she never wanted to do-come back home. To Mumbai. Now, a year later, Meera is still trying to pick up the pieces, while fending off marriage proposals from her well-meaning but traditional Gujarati family, and figure life out all over again. By starting a ballet school in Mumbai. But she has two problems. One, she doesn’t know anything about running a business. And two, she can’t dance. Not anymore. Enter Abeer Goswami. Hotshot junior partner at a South Bombay law firm and a man nursing a broken heart. When he meets Meera again, the woman who left him, he tries his hardest to be her friend, to help her and not let the past get in the way. And then There is the sexy Zoya Sehgal. Meera’s only friend in the city and the woman Abeer is currently seeing. They say triangles have pointy edges, for a reason. Will Meera find a new dream in her ballet school? Can Abeer and Meera find their way back to each other again? With you I dance is a warm, funny, at times heart-rending, love story of second chances, when your dearest dream has vanished”.
Plot- The plot is beautifully woven and revolves around Meera Sagar, who loses everything from her job to relationship on a tragic day. This incident just breaks her somewhere and she tries to set the broken pieces of life where she comes across her old friend, Zoya Sehgal and her old beau, Abeer Goswami who help her find herself.
Themes- The prominent theme is of dance. Meera Sagar is a fantastic dancer or say a professional Ballarina from New York. Life takes a turn when she has to leave her dance and she develops a phobia that she can’t dance but slowly she realises that dance is the only thing she knows and is capable of doing. The story starts with a dance and ends with a dance.
The other theme is of love. Meera and Abeer are true lovers. When Abeer propose Meera she leaves him. Feelings of guilt overpower Meera whereas feelings of animosity and hatred are developed in Abeer’s mind. When they meet each other, things take a halt. Meera has to answer all the questions of Abeer and when the truth is uncovered both come close to another only to be separated by their egoes. Thus their relationship seems love- hate relationship which keeps on changing everytime but their love never changes.
Friendship plays a significant role in this novel. Meera Sagar and Zoya Sehgal are school friends and then destiny brought them together when Meera was planning to open a dance school. Inspite of so much of gap, they shared the same close bonding. Meera could confide in her. We saw all the colours in their friendship be it fight, be it teasing or be it helping each other through thick n thin.
The next theme is of family and relationships. Meera belonged to a GUjarati family and they were pretty traditional. When their daughter comes home from New York, completely broken and shattered, the family thinks that she is good for nothing and they decide to marry her. They think they have done their part by sending her to New York to pursue her dreams, but she failed so she needs to accept her failure and move forward and marry a nice earning guy. But her brother, who is naughty and fun loving tries his best to save his sister from this. He tries to figure out the reason behind her sadness and does all those things which can make his sister happy and smile. He even succeeds in it towards the end.
Characterisation- The author has mastered the art of characterisation. She has portrayed three main characters who are entirely opposite to each other and complement each other very well. I feel the delineation of Meera Sagar could have been tough because she is a complex character and difficult to understand. She keeps a lot of secrets. Her life takes a huge turn when one sudden day she loses her job and nobody trues to figure out the reason behind it. She leaves the country quitely without meeting her beau, Abeer who loves her like anything. After an year, when life plans to brong back the broken pieces she is unabale to face anything. It is hard for her to accept the things be it her lost job or be it her broken relationship. She lives a life of a coward and when Abeer comes back to the picture, then only she realises how much she loves him. Her confidence comes back slowly and Zoya and Abeer only help her in coming out of a huge mess which she has created.
Zoya Sehgal is a sexy model and a pragmatic lady who happens to be Meera’s school friend. She is happy to meet her friend and when they catch up, they don’t feel that they are meeting after a long time. Soon, Zoya becomes Meera’s confidante and helps her in coming out of her depression and stress. She even helps her in setting up a dance school. She uses her contacts and make her come out of her messed up life.
Abeer Goswami is a lawyer by profession who happens to be in love with Meera Sagar. Their love story takes a drastic turn when Meera disappears suddenly from his life. When he sees her again after an year, all his pain, anger and hatred comes out. He tries to be mean to her but when he comes to know about her bad times, his hatred transforms into love again. He tries his best to make her come back to her normal life. He makes her laugh again and does all the things to bring back her confidence. But at times it is difficult for us to understand her mind.
Style- The author has amazingly used the words to match up with this novel. She has used simple and lucid language that keeps the text original. The use of sentences from simple to complex to compund is impeccable. The use of ballarina concept is unique. It discard all the idealistic conventions of a typical love story. Some lines touch your heart. The texture and printing of the book is an icing on the cake. Overall, it is a treat to one’s eyes.
About the Author
Aarti always wanted to be either a lawyer. Or a writer. So she tossed a coin and picked writer. Or rather, it picked her. Since then, she has valiantly struggled to put words to paper and bring characters and stories alive that make people sigh and laugh and enjoy every moment of. She has studied Journalism from Mumbai University, Creative Writing at Deakin, and considers herself a student of life. Her three favorite words are, Happy-Ever-After. She has written one romantic thriller already “White Knight” under Aarti V and has a historical series “The Lords of Devil Manor” debuting in June 2014.