This one surprised me a little bit even though the summary gives you a hint that things are going to get real pretty quickly. We start out following Maya as she struggles through fairly typical 'about to graduate high school' problems. She's secretly applied to another university, far from her traditional Indian parents, for film studies, and has a crush on seemingly unavailable guy at school while at the same time her parents are trying to find her a respectable boy for her to marry after university - which of course will be very nearby.

At first it's kind of a romance and then when a terrible event occurs and Maya has to face the ugly side of being Muslim in the US; it gets dark pretty quick. Even the end I did not see coming - the epilogue was a nice balm but dang.

The thing that really sort makes me a bit 'hmm' about the whole thing is just steep the turn was from fun romance/teen book into 'wow we're in it now' territory. Without the event happening it probably would have come to this less violently but I was having a lot of trouble reconciling how Maya and her parents were interacting with one another before everything went crazy. I'm sure others reading this may have something more meaningful to say on that subject and may identify more with what happens and the feelings and specific situations involved.

This is a good addition to diverse YA and is worth a peek if only for someone to talk it out with me because wow

KateHillier's rating:
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