A Diverse and emotional retelling of Sense and Sensibility
Incense and Sensibility is book #3 in The Rajes series but can be read as a standalone. I had the pleasure of also reading and reviewing Recipe for Persuasion. To read my review, CLICK HERE.
Title: Incense and Sensibility
Author: Sonali Dev
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (July 6, 2021)
Length: 400 pages
The author of Recipe for Persuasion—“not only one of the best but one of the bravest romance novelists working today” (Shelf Awareness)—adds an Indian American twist to Jane Austen’s classic Sense and Sensibility in this delightful retelling that is a feast for the senses.
Yash Raje, California’s first serious Indian gubernatorial candidate, has always known exactly what he wants—and how to use his privileged background to get it. He attributes his success to a simple mantra: control your feelings and you can control the world.
But when a hate-fueled incident at a rally critically injures his friend, Yash’s easy life suddenly feels like a lie, his control an illusion. When he tries to get back on the campaign trail, he blacks out with panic.
Desperate to keep Yash’s condition from leaking to the media, his family turns to the one person they trust—his sister’s best friend, India Dashwood, California’s foremost stress management coach. Raised by a family of yoga teachers, India has helped San Francisco’s high strung overachievers for a decade without so much as altering her breath. But this man—with his boundless ambition, simmering intensity, and absolute faith in his political beliefs—is like no other. Yash has spent a lifetime repressing everything to succeed.
Including their one magical night ten years ago—a too brief, too bright passion that if rekindled threatens the life he’s crafted for himself. Exposing the secrets might be the only way to save him but it’s also guaranteed to destroy the dream he’s willingly shouldered for his family and community . . . until now.
From the Publisher’s Blurb
India Dashwood was adopted from Thailand when she was a baby and raised in her family’s yoga studio in California.
Like her predecessor, Elinor, India was centered, just, loyal, and very compassionate.
India’s younger sister China, who was adopted from Kenya, was all emotion, impulsiveness, and like Marianne, suffered a terrible heartbreak.
Edward Ferrars was represented by Yash Raje, a gubernatorial candidate who was suffering from trauma after being shot during a rally. He was engaged to the beautiful and cold Naina, who, like Lucy Steele, kept him tied to a relationship she knew he did not want to be in.
I loved the strong correlation with the original plot and characters, especially the impossible, self-sacrificing love between India and Yash. I felt deeply for India, as I always feel for Elinor, my favorite Austen heroine.
As in Recipe for Persuasion, the previous book in the series, the characters are varied, bringing different cultures, religions, social classes, and sexual orientations to the story.
It was lovely to revisit some of the previous book characters and learn a little about yoga and relaxation.
Incense and Sensibility is a lovely retelling of a most-loved story!
Warning: accident, trauma, comma, violence, illness, politics.
Disclosure: I received an ARC of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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About the Author
USA Today Bestselling author Sonali Dev writes Bollywood-style love stories that let her explore issues faced by women around the world while still indulging her faith in a happily ever after.Sonali lives in the Chicago suburbs with her very patient and often amused husband and two teens who demand both patience and humor, and the world’s most perfect dog.