Dini and her best friend Maddie love to watch movies from Bollywood. They memorize lines from songs and know all the situations that can be solved by their favorite actress, Dolly Singh. When Dini’s mom gets a grant to study at a clinic in southern India for two years, Dini is both upset and excited. She’s upset to leave Maddie and her home in Delaware. But she’s also excited that she’ll be closer to Bombay, as all the filmi people call Mumbai. Maybe she’ll even have a chance to meet her screen idol, Dolly!
Meanwhile, Dolly is having her own relationship crisis. As coincidence has it, she flees to the small town of Swapnagiri, where Dini’s family has moved, to take a break from her career. Can Dini find her and finally get to meet her?
The Grand Plan to Fix Everything by Uma Krishnaswami is full of serendipitous connections. A dedicated postal worker, a diligent guard, a worried baker, a girl who can imitate all kinds of sounds, a noise-making electric car, and mischievous monkeys all weave into Dini’s story. This colorful cast of characters have roles that read like a Bollywood film, and soon Dini is trying to figure out how she can make a new friend while keeping her friendship with Maddie, solve Dolly’s problems and learn to be comfortable in her new surroundings.
Dini is a delightful character, and by the time the book ends you’ll want to orchestrate your own Bollywood film. I recommend The Grand Plan to Fix Everything for mother-daughter book clubs with girls aged 8 to 12. You may also want to check out the interview with author Uma Krishnaswami.
The author provided me with a copy of this book to review.