(Arrived in our Library; under processing)
When the younger players in India’s cricket team find out that advertising executive Zoya Singh Solanki was born at the very moment India won the World Cup back in 1983, they are intrigued. When having breakfast with her is followed by victories on the field, they are impressed. And when not eating with her results in defeat, they decide she’s a lucky charm.
The nation goes a step further.
Amazed at the ragtag team’s sudden spurt of victories, it declares her a Goddess.
So when the eccentric IBCC president and his mesmeric, always-exquisitely-attired Swamiji invite Zoya to accompany the team to the tenth ICC World Cup, she has no choice but to agree.
Pursued by international cricket boards on the one hand, wooed by Cola majors on the other, Zoya struggles to stay grounded in the thick of the world cup action. And it doesn’t help that she keeps clashing with the erratically brilliant new skipper who tells her flatly that he doesn’t believe in luck…
|In this entertaining debut novel, feisty heroine Zoya Solanki meets the Indian cricket team in the course of her advertising job. The team wins whenever she breakfasts with them. The players believe she’s their lucky charm; but not the dashing captain, who reckons hard work and talent matter more. But there is a growing undercurrent of romance in his rather fraught encounters with Zoya.|
|All this resolves itself in the lead-up to the 2011 Cricket World Cup.The pace rarely flags, and Zoya herself is that rarity in our contemporary fiction, a genuinely likeable protagonist. Moreover, its setting is one barely covered by more “literary” writers, a dynamic, young middle-class urban India. Zoya is its authentic embodiment.
Readers will connect with her droll takes on a variety of subjects: the marriage market, the tendency of NDTV newsreaders to parrot their boss’s style, peculiarly emphasised phrasing and all, or how many of Delhi’s less fashionable addresses have a soul that the posh bits lack. Equally, they will see themselves reflected in Zoya’s appealing meld of insecure ditziness and midnight-oil burning professionalism. The only flaw is that media coverage has made India’s real cricketers too well-known for us to visualise the fictional ones. Luckily, where The Zoya Factorreally works is not as a cricketing tale but as an entirely enjoyable romantic comedy.