Tuesday, April 2, 2019

The Story Behind The Object of Your Affections


I’m a STEM girl to the core. Nothing excites me more than new technology that improves our quality of life. We’ve come a long way from our cave-dwelling hunter-gatherer ancestors to an era where Space X is about to take us to the moon and back. With the advances we’ve made in medicine, we are living longer and reasonably healthier lives. And while new diseases are being discovered every day, so are their treatments…all pointing toward a positive progress.

Let’s look at what medical technology has done for fertility, in particular, through birth control, in vitro fertilization and surrogacy. These days, women (and men) can take their fertility into their own hands and are no longer bound by a biological clock or a faulty reproductive system. They can choose when to have children, whether to have any children at all, and most importantly, how to have them.

In the last decade, surrogacy has been slowly climbing the fertility charts mostly because movie stars are opting to have their children through surrogates. In India, big-name directors and movie stars are eschewing traditional family models to become single parents through surrogacy and adoption. In the last three years, two single (by choice) men have chosen to fulfill their dreams of fatherhood through surrogates. They were tired of waiting for the perfect life partner to appear and decided to get on with their lives.

Reading about these single dads, I was struck by the fact that the need to nurture wasn’t just a woman’s prerogative. Fatherhood is as strong a calling as motherhood—I’ve seen his firsthand in my husband too. Conversely, the desire to put one’s career or self above everything else isn’t only a man’s shtick. The single dads also got me thinking about gender roles and societal myths that propagate motherhood as being a woman’s “true purpose in life.” That’s not to say that it isn’t or can’t be for a lot of women. But, what about the women who don’t wish to be mothers? The women who are fulfilled just as they are—childless, yet happy—surrounded by the people they hold dear, and the work they thrive on? Should these women be forced to have a child against their will because their spouses want children or society deems it so? And why should the spouse who does want a child be deprived of his desire either when medical advancements allow for a satisfactory compromise?

And yet, how many women (and men) end up compromising to societal mores? We live in a world where judgments have become as commonplace as breath. Our appearance, our intellect, our choices, our beliefs, nothing is exempt from comment. We judge others or are judged by them with the frequency of a status update. The larger the step off the beaten path, the harsher the judgment. And then there’s the guilt of either conforming to the rules and betraying yourself or following your heart and disappointing loved ones.

In The Object of Your Affections, I’ve attempted to address these issues and the stigmas attached to them through the points-of-view of two strong yet vastly different women who are best friends. In Paris, we have a protagonist who is happy just as she is…except she knows her husband wants a child, and has given up his dream of fatherhood for her. To assuage her guilt, she finds the perfect solution to the problem by asking her best friend, Naira, who is going through her own life upheavals, if she would agree to be a gestational surrogate. Of course, such decisions and intricate relationships are never without a cost, and both women come to realize it through the course of the novel. As in life, fictional stories must be fraught in tension.


Tuesday, February 19, 2019


It's Pub Day! Finally! World, meet 


Paris, Naira and Neal, meet World

Go on, Readers. Buy my book:

Amazon  Barnes and Noble  KOBO

More links on my Website 

Wry, daring and utterly absorbing, The Object of Your Affections is an unforgettable story about two women challenging the norms... and the magic that happens when we choose to forge our own path.
Two best friends rewrite the rules of friendship, love and family... and change everything they thought they knew about motherhood.
Paris Kahn Fraser has it all—a successful career as an assistant district attorney, a beautiful home in New York City, and a handsome, passionate husband who chose her over having a family of his own. Neal’s dream of fatherhood might have been the only shadow in their otherwise happy life... until Paris’s best friend comes to town.
Naira Dalmia never thought she’d be a widow before thirty. Left reeling in the aftermath of her husband’s death, all she wants is to start over. She trades Mumbai for New York, and rigid family expectations for the open acceptance of her best friend. After all, there isn’t anything she and Paris wouldn’t do for each other.
But when Paris asks Naira to be their surrogate, they’ll learn if their friendship has what it takes to defy society, their families and even their own biology as these two best friends embark on a journey that will change their lives forever.

Listen to this podcast to learn more about me, my books and The Object of Your Affections

Thursday, February 14, 2019


~ Cover Reveal ~
The Heart of You 
(A Geeks of Caltech Novel)
by Aarti V Raman

Mixed martial arts studio owner Kit Barranos has always been a fighter. He will fight for his family. For his friends. For anyone in need.

What he doesn't know how to do is fight for himself...

... Or the inconvenient and consuming desire he has for single mom Lily Fallahil.

Office manager, Lily has spent the last decade raising her son and proving her independence to her protective and overbearing brother, Drake.

She has no time for romance. Especially with Kit Barranos, who has a body to die for and eyes that rip at her soul.

When Kit reveals his heartbreaking secret to Lily - he has a brother he never knew about, one he considered his closest friend - it brings them closer, creates a bond neither can deny.

And paves the way for a steamy attraction that explodes between them.

But it isn't just Lily that Kit is slowly but surely falling for. It's her adorable son, Bret.

Navigating the holidays, their families and their feelings is no easy task.

Flawed and fiercely loyal, Kit and Lily have fought the odds and survived.

But, survival no longer seems enough.

Can they take a chance on each other, on their hearts... On a love that braves The Heart of You?

The Heart of You is Book Three of The Geeks of Caltech, a unique band of friends bonded by loyalty, brotherhood, and pain. The Geeks of Caltech are to die for and their women all they wish to live for!


About the Author:
Aarti V Raman lives in Mumbai, India and has been a commercial editor and business journalist for the better part of a decade.
She is an incurable romantic who has taken up the task of bringing Happily Ever After to life for the characters in her head. She has three traditionally published novels out, all contemporary romances from 2014-2016, with the next one slated for release in 2019.
She currently writes and self-publishes steamy contemporary romance for urban millennials with a global twist. Sometimes, there are guns and car chases too.
Her new contemporary romance series include GEEKS OF CALTECH and ROYALS OF STELLANGARD as well as standalone romances - all of which have become Amazon India and US bestsellers.
She has also appeared as speaker at lit festivals and events around India and also dabbles in poetry, while conducting creative writing workshops.

Contact the Author:
Website * Facebook Page * Twitter * Instagram

This Cover Reveal is powered by b00k r3vi3w Tours

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

TEASER - The Object of Your Affections

You guys, it's only one more week to D-Day! To get y'all in the mood, here's a little teaser for you.

We’d made it to the reception in time for the diya dance, which went amazingly well despite the confusion my absence created in the choreography. Now, almost every guest and their mothers were wiggling their tuches off on the dance floor as the DJ brought the tent down with eardrum-busting music.
I shifted, easing my outstretched leg off the footstool Neal had found for me, and gingerly placed my burnt foot on the floor. I hated the feeling of pins and needles in my appendages—especially when it happened during a particularly long and drawn out deposition or trial—thus I kept shifting positions.
“Okay?” Naira shouted into my right ear.
I nodded, smiling. I’d tried—we’d all tried to get Naira to dance but she was determined to demur. Jet lag had fatigued her, apparently. I didn’t believe her.
“Go. Dance!” I poked her again.
“I’d rather keep you company,” she said, her lips curving in a dreamy smile.
She wasn’t jet-lagged. She was tipsy, I decided in amusement.
We’d been guzzling the infamous Girlfriend Cocktails since dinner. The GFC had been invented by our very own Naira in sophomore year, if you could believe it. The jalapeƱo-spiked cocktail recipe had been liberally shared with all the bartenders working within a six-block radius of NYU. The bartender at Lavinia’s wedding was the latest recipe recipient.
“Are you heading straight back to Mumbai after the wedding?” I simply had to know if she’d come just for the wedding.
The dreaminess in her eyes dimmed. She shook her head. “I have things to take care of in New York. I’m going to be around for a month. Probably longer if all goes well.” She brightened again. “Fun, right? We can catch up.”
“Of course, we’ll catch up. What things?” Probably something to do with the criminal.
She flapped her hand at the speakers blaring out remixed Bollywood songs. “It’s too long a conversation to get into tonight. Or shout out.”
I nodded. True. A wedding wasn’t the place to hold an interrogation. If Naira was going to be in town for a while, we’d have plenty of opportunities for confessions and cross-examinations. Still, questions and thoughts kept hammering inside my skull. And I was dying to tell her about Neal and the surrogacy. She was going to be gobsmacked. Happy gobsmacked. Naira was as baby mad as my husband.
Speaking of my husband, Neal was headed for our table, a whiskey in his hand. He’d been schmoozing with some menfolk at the bar ever since the dancing had started. But every once in a while, he’d come by to check on my foot. He stopped behind my chair, bent to give me a sweet, whiskey-laced, inverted kiss.
“Need anything?” He straightened with a final press of his lips on my forehead. His question included Naira, but she’d turned her gaze away from us. To give us privacy.
My amusement spiked. She was still a prude.
“You guys don’t need to babysit me. Go and dance. Have fun,” I said, making eyes at my husband, hoping he’d take the hint and ask Naira to dance. This business of Naira not wanting to dance like some tragic widow was rubbish, and I was having none of it.
“But I’m having so much fun babysitting you,” Naira teased.
Neal tossed his whiskey back, set the tumbler down and gallantly held his hand out to Naira. Attaboy! “Come on, lass. I may not be anywhere near your world champion status, but I promise you, I’m not a bad dancer.”
“Oh no. That’s not even… You don’t have to… I don’t want to dance. Really.” She looked at me pleadingly to rescue her.
I made a shooing motion with my hand. “Just go. It’s high time you both get to know each other. And what better way to do it than dancing together? That’s how we became friends with Lavinia and the gang, remember? Go. Let loose. It’s silly for all of us to sit around and growl at the world.”
Then, my husband turned on his full Scottish charm and within two minutes flat, he was leading my best friend onto the dance floor.

© Falguni Kothari, The Object of Your Affections

Learn more : FalguniKothari.com