Release date: 16th January 2018
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Amazon Description: Maya Aziz dreams of being a film maker in New York. Her family have other ideas. They want her to be a dutiful daughter who wears gold jewellery and high heels and trains to be a doctor. But jewellery and heels are so uncomfortable…
She’s also caught between the guy she SHOULD like and the guy she DOES like. But she doesn’t want to let Kareem down and things with Phil would never work out anyway. Would they?
Then a suicide bomber who shares her last name strikes in a city hundreds of miles away and everything changes . . .
Ever since the cover reveal for the US version and hearing the author talk about this book on social media months ago, I’ve been looking forward to this one. To put it simply, this book was too cute. This is an #ownvoices Muslim/Indian novel following a sixteen-year-old girl called Maya, who loves film and uses her portable camera to film bits & pieces of her life, to edit together and have as memories.
Let’s talk about Hina and her family, one of the standout side characters for me was Hina, Everyone needs that family member or friend they can run to for advice and guidance and this was Hina for Maya. I loved that she was always around somewhere, to help get Maya’s voice/opinion across, whether to her parents or if she needed help to figure things out.
Maya has two potential love interests in the story. Firstly there’s Phil, who Maya’s had a crush on for the longest time and then there is Kareem who Maya’s parents instatly approve of, In my opinion the introduction of Kareem felt a little bit too ‘insta love’ for me, I liked him as a character, but I preferred them together as friends, there’s a really cute scene when Maya calls him up for advice on something and I just love them as friends.
FOOD! so much food. I love when stories incorporate food into them, All the descriptions were great, as someone who’s not very adventurous with food. Also, cake was mentioned so this book just made me hungry….
Film is Maya’s passion, but it’s something her parents simply see as a hobby. She desperately wants to study it at college, but she’s nervous that she needs to live up to ‘The Perfect Indian Daughter’ image and that her parents won’t approve. Will she choose the boy that will make her parents happy or the boy she loves?
This book hits you hard around the halfway mark and as events unfold and secrets start to mount up, will Maya’s parents trust her to study so far away?
Maya deals with bullying and Islamophobia, I can’t talk for marginalised people, as a white woman, but as someone whos an avid social media user I’ve come across people harassing POC on the internet and its great to see these topics talked about in the story.
This book was adorable, a great depiction of young love, with a hard-hitting plot twist. This book is perfect for fans of When Dimple Met Rishi.
Gave: 4/5 stars.
I was kindly sent a copy of this book by the publisher, but all views are my own.