There are a variety of genres, categories and types of book, each with their own fan following. However one particular category is universally disliked and no writer wants his or her work to be labeled under this category. These are the books that ought never to have been written. I am sorry to say that Vibha Batra’s “Glitter and Gloss” belongs firmly in that category.
The very first page of the book screamed the phrase “yelly-shouty” at me (neither of which, incidentally are words). As you can imagine my expectations took a nose-dive there on in. However the book managed to disappoint my already mangled expectations. With its flimsy plot, slew of irritating characters and general misuse of both English and Hindi, it is hard to find even one redeeming characteristic in what is quite frankly an embarrassment to literature.
“Glitter and Gloss” follows Misha Chaturvedi, an aspiring make-up artist and her relationship with Akshay Agarwal, the heir to a massive jewelry business. The story is filled with every single cliché in existence. From the bumbling socially-awkward heroine, to the sassy best friend to the seemingly unattainable guy. “Glitter and Gloss” has it all. Now it may be argued that there is something comforting about the typical rom-com, and I would agree with that. But there has to be an actual story in the middle of these clichés. But our two heroes basically have one minor issue and that is about all the conflict the book has to offer.
As for the characters, Misha, who’s cringe-worthy (I actually did cringe while reading it, many times) internal monologue the reader is subjected to, is frankly a moron who inspires lesser sympathy than any other character I have read about. She is a total wreck in all social situations and appears to be something of a pathological liar. All in all she is annoying as hell. In addition to this she’s also quite the misogynist, referring to other women as “Lusty Busty” and the like.
All the other characters in the book are completely one dimensional and their entire personality could be written on a cue-card. Poulomi is sassy, disapproving best friend, Sammy is health conscious male roommate, Akshay is man candy, pure and simple. Akshay’s older sister, the book’s frankly pathetic antagonist is sanskari and old fashioned. That is more or less all there is to know about any of these characters.
Even with the pointless plot and the boring characters, the book may still have been okay, had it not been for the general awfulness of the writing itself. I understand the idea of writing in the same way that people speak and of course that makes sense, but this absolute masterpiece of bad writing routinely employs phrases like “Chhatis inch ki Chhatti“. In response to this I have just one question: Who the FUCK talks like that? (excuse my French). The writing of this book has basically taken two perfectly good languages (English and Hindi), taken them out behind the chemical shed and shot them.
On an aside, I have one more question for the writer, was M.A.C paying for this book to be written. Because that seems to be the only legitimate reason for their entire inventory to be in the book. I mean I get that Misha is supposed to be enthusiastic about makeup but that does not explain why we need to read every detail about every product that M.A.C has to offer.
In conclusion I have just one thing to say. If you want a good book to read, read something else.