I’m posting after a really long time but this is one blog post I was excited for from a very long time! Today is my stop for the Hungry Hearts Food Crawl organised by CW @ The Quiet Pond and Vicky @ Vicky Who Reads. This blog tour is unique and wonderful because #OwnVoices reviewers review a story that represents them. Today I will be sharing my thoughts on Rain by Sangu Mandanna, which features food from the state of India I was born in and belong to, Karnataka. I wanted to include some additional creative content, so the review is followed by a bookish tag that some of my book blogging friends and I came up with. Without further ado, let’s get to the heart of the post!
Author: Samira Ahmed
Age Range: 13+
Published: By Hot Key Books on January 16th, 2018
Content Warning: Racism, bigotry and hate crimes
Format I Read: Kindle e-book
Grade: Exceeds expectations
Maya Aziz is torn between futures: the one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter (i.e.; staying nearby in Chicago and being matched with a “suitable” Muslim boy), 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?
The bookish community has undergone several changes in the past few years and one of the most important steps in the right direction is the push to publish more diverse books. Readers have been clamouring for more stories that represent the world as it is today with all its diverse glory. However, there is still a lot of work to be done here, which is what articles like the one on The Guardian that states only 1% of UK’s children’s books have BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) main characters show. With social media, it has become easier for publishers to gauge what their audience wants and yet we continue to see little to no improvement in the state of things. While there are multiple reasons why the status quo isn’t changing at the rate it’s supposed to, today I want to bring up one of the issues that is rarely addressed when it comes to diverse books and publishing.
Title: Aru Shah and the End of Time (Pandava Quartet #1)
Author: Roshani Chokshi
Genre: Middle grade mythological fiction
Published: By Rick Riordan Presents on March 27th, 2018
ISBN13: 9781368012355 (US Hardcover edition)
Twelve-year-old Aru Shah has a tendency to stretch the truth in order to fit in at school. While her classmates are jetting off to family vacations in exotic locales, she’ll be spending her autumn break at home, in the Museum of Ancient Indian Art and Culture, waiting for her mom to return from her latest archaeological trip. Is it any wonder that Aru makes up stories about being royalty, traveling to Paris, and having a chauffeur?
One day, three schoolmates show up at Aru’s doorstep to catch her in a lie. They don’t believe her claim that the museum’s Lamp of Bharata is cursed, and they dare Aru to prove it. Just a quick light, Aru thinks. Then she can get herself out of this mess and never ever fib again.
But lighting the lamp has dire consequences. She unwittingly frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon whose duty it is to awaken the God of Destruction. Her classmates and beloved mother are frozen in time, and it’s up to Aru to save them.
The only way to stop the demon is to find the reincarnations of the five legendary Pandava brothers, protagonists of the Hindu epic poem, the Mahabharata, and journey through the Kingdom of Death. But how is one girl in Spider-Man pajamas supposed to do all that?
Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. How it works is that each Tuesday the host assigns a topic and then posts their top ten list that fits the topic. Every blogger can create their own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well and link to the host’s. The topic for July 17th, 2018 is: Favorite Novellas/Short Stories. I haven’t read a lot of short stories or novellas, so I wanted to change the topic to suit my reading habits. Recently, I have been curious about short story anthologies as they are great to sample the writing of different authors to see if their other stories would be a good fit for me. If you’ve read my April-May wrap-up post, I had featured an anthology in the June Anticipated Releases section, which is what got me interested in these in the first place. I haven’t read any that I remember, so these are the ones on my TBR. I’ll talk about three of them that are on my priority list and give a quick mention of the others.
Well, this is quite unexpected, to be completely honest. Since restarting this week, my views have shot up, people have been commenting on my new posts and I even got nominated for a blog award. So far, 2018 has been treating me and this precious gem of a blog very well. To add more cheer, I will be getting a lot more free time in the upcoming weeks because my travel time will be reduced to mere minutes as opposed to the five hours it is currently. If you’re a seasoned reader, you know how much this means to me. I have so many plans for this blog and I can’t wait to share my ideas with you all. Now let’d get to the award, shall we?
I was nominated by Jade from Pay Me in Tea for this award. Thanks a ton! 🙂 She has a beautifully designed book blog and is a fellow tea-lover who also happens to enjoy reading fantasy and young adult books. Do check her out and give her some love.
Let’s go over the rules quickly:
- Share the link of the blogger who has shown love to you by nominating you.
- Answer the questions.
- In the spirit of sharing love and solidarity with our blogging family, nominate 8-13 people for the same award.
- Ask them 3 questions.
Title: When Dimple Met Rishi
Author: Sandhya Menon
Genre: Young Adult (Contemporary) [Bonus: #OwnVoices novel]
Published: By Simon Pulse on May 30th, 2017
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
(adapted from Goodreads)
A laugh-out-loud, heartfelt YA romantic comedy, told in alternating perspectives, about two Indian-American teens whose parents have arranged for them to be married.
Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh.
Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.
Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.
Title: The Hate U Give
Author: Angie Thomas
Genre: Young Adult (Contemporary) [Bonus: #ownvoices novel]
Published: By Balzer + Bray on February 28th, 2017
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
(adapted from Goodreads)
Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter navigates between the poverty-stricken neighbourhood she has grown up in and the upper-crust suburban prep school she attends. Her life is up-ended when she is the sole witness to a police officer shooting her best friend, Khalil, who turns out to have been unarmed during the confrontation – but may or may not have been a drug dealer. As Starr finds herself even more torn between the two vastly different worlds she inhabits, she also has to contend with speaking her truth and, in the process, trying to stay alive herself.