REVIEW: Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed // more like love, hate and other mixed feelings

So in case you didn’t know, I am Muslim Teen. This book features a Muslim Teen main character.

IM PRETTY SURE YOU CAN HEAR MY SQUEALING ALL THE WAY OUT ON JUPITER for those who live there. Let’s make this clear, I’ve never read a YA book with a Muslim main character. And that’s partly because there is actually so little of them and that’s a problem!

So when this sweet little book arrived from the publishers in the mail a few weeks ago I couldn’t contain my excitement because 1) MY FIRST PHYSICAL ARC and 2) A MUSLIM MAIN CHARACTER. I REPEAT. A MUSLIM MAIN CHARACTER. AGAHGAH, it was so impossible and surreal for me to finally, hopefully, see myself in a book.

And then from there, when I opened up this book, a lot of feelings came through. Some happy, and some gutted and some angry and a few other conflicting emotions.

Thank you to Hot Key Books for the review copy! All opinions are my own and quotes are taken from the proof and are subject to change.


LH&F #7

 +Maya is a good MC

Maya is honestly really sweet; she absolutely loves making movies and has this major crush on Phil, a guy in her class. And she’s so rootable and likeable. I could connect with her over the course of the book, understanding her motives and sympathising with her a lot. She was real and very well developed!


+GIMME the food right now omigosh

Maya has an Indian background and while I am not Indian, a lot of the food mentioned like samosas and Tandoori Chicken were mouth-watering in a familiar way. YAS. It was so great to see the lovely food part of culture being shown in this book and just added an extra level of depth to the book BECUASE REALISTIC. I eat this food too. I want to eat this food right now. But I mean there’s also a lot of cake sharing between Phil and Maya which warms my heart.


+So, let’s talk about the romance.

And here comes the part WHERE I AM SO TORN. So we have Kareem and to me, that was total insta love. I did not ship it and I am glad Maya cut ties with him before anything really developed.

And then we have Phil, who is Maya’s all-time crush, and that is not insta love. It’s developed and I admit, very fluffy. I shipped it and sometimes I thought this book focused too much on the romance. Which annoyed me. Because in the midst of all the bad things, Maya still went on and thought about her love life and it felt like sometimes she paid too much attention to it?!

But my problem with this is not about the way the romance was developed. It was about the whole controversy of “Muslims girls dating”. And In a contemporary with a Muslim MC, I was hoping this was going to be tackled in some way. But No. Maya just says “I know how to sneak out”. But really? She doesn’t struggle with wanting a relationship with Phil but also wanting to please her parents. I mean sure she jokes about her parents are not okay with it. But she never feels one ounce of guilt or regret about Phil, concerning her parents and her religion.

+ MY OWN PERSONAL thoughts on the Muslim Rep.

There was a lot of “culture” in this book but for me, religion is a struggle. There are ups and downs. But for Maya, there was none of that. She never mentions her beliefs in God like things like whether she believes in Him or not. She never even talks about her religion, well at least not much. And this is an #ownvoices book so I’m not undermining anyone’s experiences. But for me, religion plays a huge part in my life. I think about it. But Maya NEVER thinks of God in her life. At. All. It’s like her religion is simply just a label.

Look, everyone has their own relationships with their religion, and I’m not questioning that. But if I hadn’t been told Maya was Muslim, apart from the terrorist attack and the mention of the Qu’ran from her parents, I wouldn’t have known. That’s because I never see Maya pray, or think of God, or think of the Qur’an and struggle with her beliefs or do anything, to show she is a Muslim. And this is a hefty topic because belief is in the heart. But this was 1st person, i wanted to something to relate to. Anything. BUt really Maya only struggles with her Indian culture and not her religion. It’s like, WHERE IS ANY SINGLE PART OF HER MUSLIM IDENTITY?!!?! Where is those part of her, those Muslim parts of her? I DONT SEE IT ANYWHERE.

My father picks up where my mother leaves off. “These terrorists are the antithesis of Islam. They’re not Muslim. Violence has no place in religion, and the terrorists are responsible for their own crimes, not the religion and not us.”

See look, the Muslim struggles concerning society ARE THERE. But the actual belief and religions and teachings? ZILCH.

And I’m not expecting a perfect Muslim who prays 5 times a day but there was LITERALLY NOTHING to show she was Muslim. And for a Muslim reader, that’s difficult. Becuase I was looking for Muslim rep. Instead, I got Indian rep which is great but a massive seller of this to me was the Muslim representation.

Another example is when at one point, Kaleem drinks wine and Maya is dumbstruck. And he’s just like “Yeah my parents know. NO BIGGIE” ANd see what I mean? Religion is totally discarded here. And then he jokes “No need to be shocked, Maya. it’s not like I’m eating pork.”. WHAT NO?? You are not allowed to eat pork, same with drinking Wine. One is not worse than the other. ANd the problem here is that if someone wanted to know whether Muslims were allowed to drink and read this book, they’d probably think the whole Wine being forbidden was a joke. And Islam is not a joke.

+I definitely could relate to the Islamaphobia though.

She got a lot of hate from Brian which was horribly relatable. And people called her terrorist and things like that and again, shockingly familiar to me. It showed the horrors of hate crime and how “terrorism has no religion” as Maya’s dad amazingly said.

I’m scared. I’m not just scared that somehow I’ll be next; it’s a quieter fear and more insidious. I’m scared of the next Muslim ban. I’m scared of dad getting pulled into Secondary Security Screening at the airport for “random” questioning. I’m scared for the hijabi girls I know getting their scarves pulled off while they’re walking down the sidewalk––or worse. I’m scared of being the object of fear and loathing and suspicion again. Always


+I feel like Maya a lot of the time was a lovesick puppy.

I mean the beginning, the insta love was making me sick. And the cute fluff. It’s not the book, it’s mostly me because I honestly can’t stand cute texts and blushing. Not to mention, Maya is the queen of blushing. I think I’ve blushed once in my life. We shall forget this okay. So, yeah this was more “me” thing because romance has to be done in a specific way.


I want to freak tear something or punch something right now. Most of the book, we had an amazing portrayal of the parents but realistic as well. But there were parts that irked me. Like the mum fell into every stereotype EVER. “You need to get married”, “You need to find a sensible man”. And I don’t want people to see Muslim parents like that. Maybe that’s Indian parents (i don’t know) because that’s literally what everyone thinks. And now it’s just showing that’s all Indian/Muslim parents think about. Marriage.

And frick, that may be true in some cases. But I really want to see supportive mothers and fathers who don’t even care if their daughters get married. Like my mum cares ABOUT OTHER THINGS ABOUT ME. Like all Maya’s mum cares about is if 1)Maya gets married and 2) if Maya seats properly. Now, the second one is relatable but the first?!!? Your mum should care about your hobbies, your interests not just if you are going to freaking get married. It annoyed me.

I mean it sure was relatable when Maya’s mum kept reminding Maya to “eat food” and when Maya says that you are “either too skinny or too chubby” BECAUSE YES I AM HERE WITH YOU MAYA. But MILD SPOILER AHEAD –> They disown her for wanting to go to a college?
+ The Supporting Cast warms my heart!

VIOLET. I wanted Violet to have more of a part of the story but she was always there for Maya and she literally stood up for herself and Maya so many times. I love amazing female friendships like this

Phil is a pure sweet cinnamon roll and I love him. He had his own struggles and he suffered and he’s literally the best romantic bean ever.And Kaleem? He backed off after a while and was such a great friend of Maya despite everything. THANK YOU.

The honest, pure, kind, HINA had me cheering. Hina is not married and she’s a graphic designer and literally my favourite. OMG, WHY CAN WE NOT FOCUS ON HER MORE?! Please give me a whole book on Hina, thanks. She is marvellously great and breaks all stereotypes which are honestly so refreshing to see! AGH Hina supports Maya through everything and it honestly made me smile.


I finished this in a matter of hours because the writing was quick and I basically just devoured it. It was engaging, powerful and realistic all at the same time and with a dash of flawless writing and amazing characters, you will not regret this read. However the Muslim rep really wasn’t there for me, but there were great Indian culture and a beautiful story!Anyways, the Muslim rep is just me! Other Muslims may think it was great. I did not…really. Still a roller coaster of a book and super intriguing! I definitely enjoyed this book, just some aspect put me off.




 Samira Ahmed

 A searing #OwnVoices coming-of-age debut in which an Indian-American Muslim teen confronts Islamophobia and a reality she can neither explain nor escape–perfect for fans of Angie Thomas, Jacqueline Woodson, and Adam Silvera.

Maya Aziz is torn between futures: the one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter and the one where she goes to film school in New York City–and maybe, just maybe, kisses a guy she’s only known from afar. There’s the also the fun stuff, like laughing with her best friend Violet, making on-the-spot documentaries, sneaking away for private swimming lessons at a secret pond in the woods. But her world is shattered when a suicide bomber strikes in the American heartland; by chance, he shares Maya’s last name. What happens to the one Muslim family in town when their community is suddenly consumed with hatred and fear.

LOVE, HATE & OTHER FILTERS IS PUBLISHED ON JANUARY 16th 2018. You can order a copy here and read my original review here.


Let's Whisper

Have you read a book with Muslim representation? What’s your most recent diverse read? What book let you down on representation? Are you going to read Love, Hate & Other Filters? Tell me all!

Ilsa - Edited


66 thoughts on “REVIEW: Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed // more like love, hate and other mixed feelings”

  1. Great review! This was my last read and I also didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. It came across to me as a contemporary romance novel more than anything (which is my LEAST favourite genre) but it can also be a good thing?? A Muslim teen starring in romance novel without the author focusing on her Muslim-ness?? I’M HERE FOR THAT. But, ugh. I’m really conflicted about this book.

    I am currently reading I Am Thunder by Muhammad Khan which also releases in January and has similar themes (following a British-Pakistani teen) and I’m definitely enjoying it a lot more than Love, Hate. That might just be because it’s proper British though. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Nadia! I enjoyed it but a lot of things fell short for me, if I am being honest. I do think a Muslim romance novel CAN be a good thing, but I also think the book kind of DID need to focus a little bit on her muslim-ness because I feel it would be great if that was tacked in some way?! Instead of being completly disregarded.

      I AM SO EXCITED FOR I AM THUNDER. I didn’t manage to grab a proof but I am anticipating the release so much!

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Definitely! I do think the incidents at her parents’ clinic and the theme park were brushed over too quickly? (There’s also a theme park scene in I Am Thunder and I had to double take for a second to make sure I’m not mixing the novels up 😂)

        You can request I Am Thunder on NetGalley, if you use it!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Ilsa! I remember you mentioning this book in a previous post and I was super excited to hear what you thought of the Muslim rep… that kind of background makes what is a typical contemporary romance STAND OUT. I thought it would be super cool to read about those struggles you talked about in your review… so I’m a bit disappointed! ♥️ It was a great review! I totally understood your POV. Recently I read Eliza and her Monsters which had a touch of diversity… I love this kind of diversness because while it’s minor it was NATURAL. I was really disappointed in the bi-rep in Labrynth Lost… it was a fine story but don’t advertise a certain rep and have it be so little to be non existent… 🍰🍰🍰 (Here have some cake after such a heartfelt review!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Dani! I was really excited for the Muslim Rep too! i guess, it more of a “it’s me not you, the book” type of thing?! MAYBE OTHERS WILL ENJOY THIS. MAYBE I AM AN ALIEN. Who knows. Oh i LOVEd Eliza. looking forward to hearing your thoughts on it soon! I love DIVERSE and NATURAL books! They are so great. THANKS FOR THE CAKE AND COMMENT!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve never read a book – a romance – that starred a muslim teen, or adult for that matter. I’ve herd about some, but mostly i read fantasy, and so far, there was only Mohsin ‘exit west’ which i have on my tbr list but haven’t yet read. but still, even without reading, i imagine touching on islam and romance in a book that has a teen and a girl as the mc is a very touchy subject. If something that isn’t true or contradict islam in a way is mentioned – specially something that can affect the mind and way of thinking of a teen is written in such a book, i believe the author could get in trouble for that.
    I’m a writer with a first book almost published, and i’m a muslim. but to be honest, I’m one of many who’d rather avoid writing about islam in a fiction book and specially one that goes under romance.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah! I think Muslim Romance books are almost non-existent! I definitely want more Muslims in fantasy books as well. IN ALL BOOKS FOR THAT MATTER. Yeah, I think the romance for a Muslim Teen is a hefty and touchy topic but it CANNOT be disregarded! It should be handled in a manner that makes it understandable. I wouldn’t avoid writing about Islam in a fiction book. I think diversity is a wonderful beautiful thing and that we should embrace Muslim characters? Each to their own I guess.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m not against it, and in kade Daniels – by Ilona Andrews, they have a minor character, her name is Nesrein, and she’s brought the water of zamzam once to heal the mc. and on another installment, there was a monster from the egypt? not sure, but they read the captred it inside a box that had an inscription of surat al nas, or al falaq on it. it’s a great series that i enjoy. but as for my writing, if i add something islam related, it won’t be romance. thanks for the discussion.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book with Muslim representation but I DEFINITELY WANT TO CHANGE THAT. It sucks how there are so little books around with Muslim rep! My most recent diverse read was The November Girl (and it kind of let me down on representation.

    I will probably read this book anyways because it sounds really good tbh but hopefully I won’t hate it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. im more than 1 year late replying to this i love myself! there’s deffo more books with muslim rep lately but apart from the love and lies of rukshana ali, the actual premise of all of them are not what i usually read which is a bit annoying.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Great review! I have seen this book quite a lot of times on social media and I was freaking excited for this because, Muslim FEMALE PROTAGONIST! We don’t see that often, do we? I couldn’t request this on Netgalley, I wished for it. After reading this review, my interest has definitely piqued but not in a good way. I totally can relate with whatever you said about the representation. I feel that Muslim authors have a far greater responsibility on their shoulders than others. Muslim fiction by Muslim authors is seen as representation of Islam itself and to correctly portray and convey Islam is a challenge no doubt. I also agree with your point about Muslim Parents. (With due respect to the author) NEWS FLASH: Not all Muslim/Indian Muslim (I happen to be the daughter of Indian Muslim Parents) Parents dream of bidding farewell to their daughters as soon as they cross 20. We need more supportive parents, I want to see my parents in books and not parents who are hard to relate to or who go against Islam to teach Islam (disowning due to college?).

    Ok, so this turned into a rant, sorry! And please note that I mean no offence to the author or anybody. These are my personal views.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. im terribly late to replying to this. more than 1 and a half years late actually. OOPS. i agree with your comment so much. i want more positive desi rep (for that i’d recommend my so called bollywood life. full of high school drama but i loved how the mc owned her culture!) i feel like bc muslim rep in YA is slowly emerging there’s a lot of expectations which can be very scary for ov writers! i really want to see more rep, esp in fantasy!


  6. OH LOOK AN #OWNVOICES REVIEW OF AN #OWNVOICES BOOK!! I have a special place for those in my heart ok I shall shove it in everyone’s faces BEACUSE LOOK READ UNDERSTAND.

    I really appreciate hearing your pov. There should definitely be more books featuring diverse characters beacuse hello the world is diverse and art reflects the world we live in. Make diversity the norm. Next time how about a muslim mc that is an absolute badass in a fantasy novel while also having the best relationship with her mom who is also a badass all while repecting her religion because it’s not a bad thing that need to disappear for plot??

    I am really sorry you have to struggle with bigotry and generally stupid people that don’t understand and don’t want to understand. How hard can it be for people to just shut up and listen and be compassionate. We share a frickin’ floating space rock SERIOUSLY LEARN TO CO-EXIST IN PEACE AND SHARE SOME LOVE IT’S POINTLESS TO FIGHT BECAUSE THERE IS NOWHERE TO RUN EXPECT THE VAST VACUUM OF SPACE.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. dude im so late but this comment genuinely reminded of why i love you sm. why are there good people in the world who make me feel HAPPY, i cant deal. “. Next time how about a muslim mc that is an absolute badass in a fantasy novel while also having the best relationship with her mom who is also a badass all while repecting her religion because it’s not a bad thing that need to disappear for plot??” this is my ideal novel where is it and why doesn’t it exist thank u very much. ur literally the kindest soul in the world. I AGREE. WHY DO PEOPLE FEEL THE NEED TO BE UNNECESSARILY ANNOYINGLY RUDE.


  7. i love your reviews and i’m sorry this didn’t work out for you?? and god there are so many stereotypes about islam & romantic relationships (which is why i’m always hearing about erasure of muslim lgtbq+) ughughguh honestly there are lots of negative stereotypes about islam in general. and like ??? it doesn’t make sense. how can you condemn a whole religion to being “terrorists”. (white people have been much worse to other people just sayinggggg.) before i knew you were muslim, i didn’t think you were evil or a murderer. and after i knew you were muslim, i didn’t think that either. you’re a fricking person & lovely human being who deserves everything in the world. ❤

    blech sorry for the rant that wasn't really even related to the book have a good day ily ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. im horribly late to this but uh…i remember reading this when u first posted this as was like “ahhhhhhhhh” because it was so kind and im so glad that you…don’t judge me? that sounds weird but i always feel really judged when i talk about religion lol. anyways ur way too kind to me pls stop and ilsym!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Great review! That’s so annoying that the portrayal wasn’t too great :/ I have a friend who’s Muslim, and it’s a big part of her life but also doesn’t totally define her? Like she prays three times a day during the school days because it’s easier than five, but her parents are great and super supportive of her going to university and 100% support her and her siblings doing their own thing and are just generally good parents. It’s so annoying that certain stereotypes are perpetuated in this book, especially since it’s own voices.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m sorry but that answer sounds very rude to me. I took time to comment and read the post, but you’re welcome I guess.


      2. i’m really sorry. i see how that come across as really rude! i honestly adore every comment i get but i genuinely didn’t understand the first part of your comment. thanks for saying u love my blog tho! agh, i feel so bad! i didn’t mean for it to come across so blunt and rudely. ❤ ❤ didn't mean to hurt your feelings, sending love! ❤


  9. You should read ten things I hate about me!! It’s about a Lebanese-Muslim girl who lives in Australia, and struggles with accepting her identity due to the casual racism in her school and city. It was a really interesting read and I’ve reread it multiple times!!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh I’m sorry to hear you felt a little bit disappointed by this book! I think I want to read it at some point, because I’m still really curious about the story and characters overall, but it was good to hear your thoughts about it all, especially since it’s an ownvoices book and that you’re an ownvoice reviewer. I’ll definitely think about your thoughts while reading this book.
    I haven’t read a book with Muslim rep just yet, but I can’t wait to read more. We do need more of these in YA, that’s for sure! 🙂
    Great review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I really wanted to read this book simply becuase I wanted to see how the Muslim and Indian rep would be and I wanted to see if it would beat When Dimple Met Rishi with the cultural rep but sadly they do sound quite similar. Then again When Dimple Met Rishi went VERY heavy with the romance. It was basically a rom-com. I’m hoping Love, Hate & Other Filters isn’t that heavy on the romance…?🤔🤞🏾
    I definitely feel a bit let down this book wasn’t as good as I expected but I’m still going to give it a chance and read it!
    Great review😄

    Liked by 1 person

    1. oh love hate and other filters has soooo much romance. its practically the main focus. there is other stuff i guess but romance, romance and more romance. im not too interested in when dimple met rishi but it sounds cool but nowhere near the top of my tbr. hope you do give it a hcnace i guess you might love it.


  12. This was a wonderful review! I really enjoyed your style of reviewing, and I feel like I know a lot about the book now. So, it was super enjoyable to read! 🙂
    It’s too bad that this book was a tad disappointing, but I think I might add it to my TBR anyway..we shall see..

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you for sharing your honest thoughts! I’m taking a Women Writers class this semester with an emphasis on Muslim authors, so I have been trying to be a lot more aware of what’s being published in YA now. I found it really interesting about what you thought of the Muslim rep and I’m sorry that it was disjappointmenting. Great review, though!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Actually, this is really interesting. I feel like I can relate to Maya in this instance. I’m muslim, have a Pakistani father and Maltese mother. We don’t fit stereotypes.. at all. If my life was a book, and you were reading it, I feel like you’d wonder where the spiritual aspects come in to play. I’m the same here. It’s not a label for me, ‘Muslim’, but you definitely wouldn’t pick me out as being Muslim. I don’t pray, my whole life doesn’t revolve around God (but my Dad’s does), but I always follow rules on what can and can’t be eaten. I just can’t not follow it. It’s just something that I automatically do..

    I guess my point is that the main character probably could’ve been more involved with her thinking of religion and overall spirituality, but people like her do exist… we’re the more unusual sort. (:


    1. AGH omg! I didn’t mean to undermine you experiences or anything xx Everyone’s different and have a variety of relationships with their religion and that’s okay. I did highlight that these were my PERSONAL thoughts on the muslim rep! The author is a muslim herself and so experiences are valid and so are yours. Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Love this review, Ilsa! It’s been so long since I have read your posts I’ve missed them! I haven’t read the book but I’ll consider it! I totally hear you on you “Muslim Parent Representation” view. I’m not Muslim but I am Indian and in almost every book and media portrayal, they show Indian parents as some sort of strange people who don’t actually love their kids and just want to marry them off. Yes, some parents are like that but not all! I’m happy that there is some Muslim representation in the YA community but it could definitely be better.


    1. OMG VIOLET YOU EXIST!?!?!?!?!? HOW THE HECK. Soooo glad you commented! OMG yes, Indian and Muslim parents need to be represnted as caring and LOVING people and not just people who want to marry their daughters off. UGH, it bugs me. I’m happy for this #ownvoices MUslim book but it missed the mark for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Wow, thank you for such a raw review on this. I’m not Muslim, but I am religious, and I definitely feel that there is a huge lacking of positive religious characters in YA fiction. I know right now religion is controversial, but I feel that excluding it is STILL taking a side in some way. I was excited when you said this novel features a Muslim MC, but it seems it still falls to the trap of not wanting to show too much for fear of ‘alienating’ non-Muslim readers. What a shame because it sounds like this book had so much potential, and it’s disappointing it seemed afraid of it’s own premise.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I think if I read this book, I would probably have mixed feelings as well. As a fellow Muslim teen, I think it’s definitely very very upsetting when the representation isn’t quite right. I’m sure that the book is going to be great but like you said the proper Muslim representation is a bit off so that’s a disappointment because having a Muslim main character in books is quite a rare thing…anyway, I’m still really happy that you got to read it and share your wonderful review with us! ☺️❤️

    Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s exactly what I mean… Its not wrong but… If I wasn’t looking for a story about a Muslims life…. I would have read one of the thousand better normal fiction books out there… But I want to read about a Muslim and I just end up disappointed…

        Liked by 1 person

  18. AGH omg! I didn’t mean to undermine you experiences or anything xx Everyone’s different and have a vairety of relationships with their religon and that’s okay. I did highlight that these were my PERSONAL thoughts on the muslim rep! The author is a muslim herslef and so experiences are valid and so are yours. Thanks for the comment!


  19. It’s such a shame that there wasn’t a bit more religion representation in there! I think in general YA books tend to shy away from religion because it can be a massive turn off for some readers but I think there’s a difference between showing characters who are religious and forcing religion on people. Personally I would love to read a book with a muslim main character so that I could get a better understanding of the religion.


  20. This review is awesome. I still can’t wait to read it myself, but I feel off about the whole wine thing and not really representing Islam as it should because THAT IS LITERALLY THE WHOLE VIBE I WANTED FROM THIS BOOK. Like, look, MUSLIM REP!! GIVE IT TO ME!!

    It gave me inspiration for my own Muslim MC and now I changed what I want to write for Camp Nano.

    YOU’RE MUSLIM????? How did I not know this??


  21. Ok so the blushing drove me up the wall. I was like oh are you blushing again? Really? *pretends to be shocked* That was like my biggest pet peeve with this book, but like you I felt like maybe it was more me than the book’s problem. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Well written review! Super appreciate your personal experience and thoughts with this book. I’m glad for the representation, but I totally understand your own disappointments.
    I think people want to discard religion too easily in books. But coming from a really religious background, it does affect you. I spent most of my teenage years in a religious cult, that was all about religious brainwashing, basically. It still affects me, and my conflicts with my faith and the choices I make.
    (I don’t belong to that cult, at ALL by the way. I’m pretty mainline Christian)

    Anyway, your review was amazing. And I kind of hope you write your own book with Muslim representation. I would definitely read it.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. I don’t read contemporary much, but I was thinking about picking up this book. I’m not here for the sappy romance though (urgh), so I’ll only read it for the Indian culture!
    I’m sorry the Muslim rep didn’t work out for you! I’m not Muslim myself, I’m Christian, but I often feel the same way you do. I pick up a supposedly Christian book and, once I’ve read it, realise that they’ve only used Christian as a label. The characters in no way struggle or grow in their relationship with God…there’s nothing relatable. So I completely get what you mean. 🙂 Nice review, I enjoyed it a lot!


  24. Great review!! I was debating with whether or not I’m going to pick this one up after reading PaperFury’s review, but after yours … I’m thinking probably not. If the Muslim rep isn’t there as it is said to be, then I don’t need to read it. Religion is something that YA books seem to want to distance themselves from, it seems. I wonder if that’s a publisher’s choice? Stave off the religion, give some of the culture to appeal to a wider audience? IDK. But I enjoyed reading your review! Hope you enjoy your next read more 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Thank you for your review! I enjoyed Love, Hate and Other Filters, but your points here are important to bear in mind, especially since I am not Muslim. I do make an effort to seek out books with different representation, and one of the last books I read that had Muslim representation as a central point was The Secret Lives of the Amir Sisters.

    Liked by 1 person

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