The Spectacular Miss – My Thoughts

spectacular missImage Source: Goodreads

Author – Sonia Bahl

Blurb (from Goodreads) –

I learned that I am, despite my early years spent as a
swaggering boy, at heart just a middle-class, hard-working,
risk-averse, un-creative, strait-laced, routine-obsessed
conformist. In case I forgot to mention it, I’m also
prudish to the point of being puritanical.
But at eight, Nira had only one over-powering wish—to pee
standing up like a boy. In fact, to be a boy.
Join Nira as she steps into her brother’s clothes and becomes
the self-appointed Al Caponesque gang leader of the neighbourhood
boys. Her oddball yet madly loving family shapes her
personality, and a poignant relationship with her brother’s best
friend shapes her life.
She uses uninhibited candour to detail her coming-of-age journey
from Calcutta to London, from tomboy to reluctant woman-
in-progress . . . always trying to fit in, but always failing. She’s
a laugh a minute, and yet she breaks your heart with her subconscious,
percussive yearning for the one person who is always too
old, too far, too married to be hers.

My thoughts –

This post has been pending for quite some time now. I was sent a copy of this book by the publishers (Fingerprint Publishing) some months back. I finished reading it almost immediately but then misplaced the book and hence the delay in the review post. :/

The Spectacular Miss is the coming of age story of a girl called Nira who, as a child, dreamt of peeing standing up, like a boy; in fact, she wanted to be one! Her journey from an average tomboy growing up in Calcutta to becoming a doctor in London is a funny one & heart-warming too. Her self-depreciating sense of humour had me in splits many times & I floated easily from page to page. And then there was Bir, her best friend. He was a friend of her brother and 10 years older than her but she found a good friend in him; he was her saviour many times. And then she was smitten with him too! ❤ And why not, he was a kind of guy who everyone would like to have in their lives 🙂

Battling various challenges during the different stages of her life, surviving & getting a doctor’s degree in London, finding love and almost getting married to the wrong guy and finally a happy ending with the one she really loved, the story of Nira is an interesting & quirky read. The only downer in the book for me was that the happy ending happened rather too quickly but then maybe it’s only me who felt that way, others might like it as well!

All in all, for me, the author was successful in giving us a story that has a perfect balance of fun, romance, and humour along with some endearing characters.

Final word –

A brilliant, humorous & heartwarming coming of age story… it for a few good laughs, if not anything else. 🙂

Notes –

  • The book was sent to me by Fingerprint Publishing & the opinions expressed here are my own and unbiased.
  • This review is linked to my Goodreads Reading Challenge, 2016.


  1. A lovely review. I’m not sure it’s a book I would pick off the shelf, but your review of it is intriguing. I may have to look it up.

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