Book Review: Half Boyfriend

A shameless parody that cracks you up in every chapter, I am simply in love with Half Boyfriend! It is hilarious, cheeky, and very innocently it has ripped apart mainstream novels by Chetan Bhagat that we secretly love to read.

As the name suggests, Half Boyfriend is a parody of Chetan Bhagat’s (don’t know how!) famous novel, Half Girlfriend which was released with much fanfare. Written by Judy Balan and Kishore Manohar, Half Boyfriend follows the story of a feudal rich boy from a village, Manav, who is basically a Prince and a gorgeous city girl Rhea who hails from a rich family and has a weakness for “Lost Causes”.

Manav meets Rhea and falls in love with her. I am sorry, he doesn’t fall in love, instead, he decides within minutes that he has found the next queen for his little kingdom. Shamelessly, he starts stalking Rhea in an attempt to court her, woo her and then as cliched novels end, sleep with her into a marriage.

In between this awesome parody, you come across series of pointless events and unbelievable coincidences that make Mr. Bhagat what he is today. You see Rhea trying to get rid of Manav and her psychopathic behavior, you see her “lost cause” weakness taking over her brain sometimes, you meet a “Queen Villain” who doesn’t want her son to replace her place in the kingdom. (She reminds me of Cersei Lannister of Game of Thrones but in an Indian way). Even the President of America graces the reader with his presence!

The Half Girlfriend

The beauty of Half Boyfriend is the “short version” at the start of each chapter. Within few lines, the writers share with you what you will come across in the chapter. And these 3-4 lines only will make you laugh! I mean I have never come across such creativity! Another point to note that Half Boyfriend is not just a parody of Chetan Bhagat’s Half Girlfriend, it gives a bigger message related to Indian pop culture wherein there is a thin line between persistence and stalking, but is still pretty much ignored in Bhagat’s writing. As an important influencer, one should practice a little caution when it comes to writing on a mass scale.

Just like his books, prologue, and epilogue in Half Boyfriend has Chetan Bhagat visiting the protagonist. And out of the two, epilogue is something that you simply cannot miss! It has all the masala! The only place I felt stuck was in Chapter 26. But then Judy and Kishore made it pretty clear in the short version that I will be like “Who the fuck is Allen” every time I read Allen!

The Half Girlfriend

All in all, Half Boyfriend was like one amazing break from serious reading for me. It has Bollywood drama, villains, cheesy sidekicks, crazy cross-country chases, a psychotic hero and damsel in distress. And for others, this is one book that you simply cannot miss.

And any which ways, secretly we all have a soft spot for Bhagat’s books, so why not devour into the other (awesome) half of the story?

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