The Contract : Review

Book          : The Contract
Author       : Zeenat Mahal
Genre`       :  Romance/Contemporary
Publishers  : IndiReads
Cover         : Lacking, unimaginative and bland ..for such beautiful characters, it deserved better. Surely
Ratings       : 3/5

The blurb which got me interested was-

…I’ll pay you a monthly salary to behave and appear for all practical purposes as my wife…If you agree, the marriage vows can be taken on the phone on Saturday, since I have an hour free in the morning.”
Circumstances have forced the young divorcée, Shahira, to accept Hussain’s unusual proposition. As per their contract, she’ll have his name, will be paid to look after his ailing mother and motherless daughter and will be left well alone by him. Perfect!
Until her new husband decides to stop playing by the rules…"
 Of - course I was expecting a romance ! And romance it is.. heady mix of traditional and contemporary,aromatic alleys of Pakistan and cobblestoned Western streets. May be, sort of mild Mills n Boons.
With glimpses of Asian life and mind set the book is essentially contemporary and liberal.
A book which I wish would have been better if thicker ! there was still a lot more to explore.The writer had such a potent plot, the stage set, props at place and emotions ignited...... 
Writing Style 
Is clear and simple so much so that I finished the book in 2 hours flat. The sentences mainly are short ,crisp and devoid of unnecessary details.
This too much simplicity also works against it as there were sights to be seen , seasons waiting to be described and scenic views unfolding beautifully in front of our protagonists' eyes... but then better not to describe, than doing it badly or too much. 
For a romantic novel, the narration was fast but, it was smooth and powerful also. I enjoyed reading Shahira's emotional journey . 
Loved Shaihra for her integrity though Hussein still seem to have some (unintentional) corners which need a bit rounding of
Nudrat could have been more than stereotype other woman ...
The character I loved most is Salma Aunty.Her love and acceptance for Shahira as well as her son is touching.
 It was a REAL pleasure to read about their relationship.
My rating is 3 as though I was not expecting anything literary, yet, the characters could be more layered and meaty. As well as beside the Daahta Sahib, there is hardly any glimpse of Lahore or Paris Or London. It would have been rewarding if little peccadilloes, the and routine activities would have found a passing mention in the narration, it helps the book to set in real world  and makes the impression lasting.
Having said all, the writer IS Promising with a capital 'P' and I look forward to read her more :)
About the Author

Zeenat Mahal (@zeenat_mahal) is an avid reader and has been writing for as long as she can remember. She has an MPhil in English literature from Government College Lahore and is currently doing an MFA in creative writing from Kingston University, London. She won a BBC short story competition in 2001 and has been a regular contributor to newspapers. Zeenat has eclectic tastes and an insatiable desire to learn. Her romances are a heady mix of the traditional and the contemporary, old world values face the challenges of a shrinking globe that impinge upon and help shape South Asian sensibilities. She is currently working on a literary novel with elements of magical realism, while continuing to write romances. 
Zeenat currently lives in Kingston Upon Thames with her fabulous sons.

*The book was offered as  a part of IndiReads Reviewer Program

Best Buy at amazon 

For my GoodRead Review
For Amazon Review


  1. It seems like a good book though devoid of details. Thanks for sharing the review.
    Have a great day!

    1. Thanks Kiran for the constant comment love .. its truly motivating dear :)

  2. The name suggests the theme...I can guess it .. :-P ...you've provided hints nicely and I think it would be a good read for me. Adding it to my 'to read' list... :-)

    1. Yeah Mani its the cheesy type but not cheesy at all... Shahira's thought process is quite balanced and a one with which one can easily relate to .Thanks for the comment love, friend :)

  3. That's a wonderful review Kokila..The book sounds interesting..And many more congratulations on completing your reading challenge for 2014.. All the very best for the coming year too..Advanced wishes dear :)

    1. Thank you So much Nagini :)
      It feels great to overachieve SOMEthing at least :P wishes to you too dear for the coming year and your reading pleasure :) Its been a great year knowing you friend :)


Your views make this blog work ...Thanks a lot. :)

ग़ुलाब- The Rose

                 ग़ुलाब एक...                                    डॉयरी के पन्नों में,                                     कोयल ने फिर कुह...