March 1, 2018
Love, Hate & Other Filters
"No time for sentimentality." ~ pg. 45
In this debut young adult (YA) novel, an American-born Muslim teen named Maya Aziz copes with Islamophobia, cultural divides, and feeling torn between worlds. Her parents rather Maya attend University of Chicago close to home and be paired with a suitable Muslim boy. But Maya wants to attend NYU, pursue film and fall into like with a boy of her own choosing.
Finally a book featuring an Indian Muslim girl as the main character. I'd never read one before so was really looking forward to Maya's point of view. Her parents seemed to be a fair representation and the Indian food described was mouth-watering. But Maya's thoughts of romance is eye-rolling. What she deems important as a teen is a bit naive. Are young people really this one-sided? Are they clueless to bigotry in this world? This character could have so much depth but instead was disappointing.
Love, Hate & Other Filters is a good idea but the dialogue and writing was too basic. I can usually follow along without boredom while reading other YA novels but this one screamed for teen readers only. I stuck it out until page 53 before marking it DNF (did not finish). Back to the library it goes!
"And for those who bear the brunt of hate because of the color of their skin, or the sound of their name, or the scarf on their head, or the person they love; for those who are spat upon, for those who are told to 'go home' when they are home: you are known." ~ pg. 278
In the Author's Note, Samira Ahmed addresses the readers. She wrote this book out of love and hope. Having lived in New York on 9/11, she bore witness to Islamophobia, grief, and violence. But she also saw people rise up and be resilient. Meaningful message but the story itself didn't do it for me. Too much fluff!
Title: Love, Hate & Other Filters
Author: Samira Ahmed
Published: January 2018