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Saturday, 15 September 2012

YA Book Review ~ Medeia Sharif

REVIEW: BESTEST. RAMADAN. EVER.

This novel was written by the lovely Medeia Sharif
I was attracted to it because of its original subject matter. I wanted to learn what it was like to be a Muslim American Teenager trying to sustain her fast during Ramadan, while coping with normal teenage commitments and concerns, such as parental and cultural restrictions, boyfriends versus friendships, spiteful rivalries, the desire to be kissed and braces on her teeth!

I confess that the opening pages made me feel slightly alarmed, in this modern age of eating disorders and obsessions with body image, but as I read on I realised that the MC, Almira Abdul has a genuine weight problem and while not obsessed by it, would like to be as 'hot' as her fitness conscious mum.

It has an easy flowing voice that instantly draws the reader in and is replete with raging hormones, teen dramas & preoccupations. Almira Abdul, is a normal teen who is struggling to be socially accepted within the culture she now lives, while trying to embrace the culture into which she was born.
Almira admits she has allowed certain aspects of her religion to lapse, but as a normal self absorbed teen she is focused on the desires and expectations shared by her peers inevitably immersed in American culture.
I enjoyed the journey and would thoroughly recommend the book. I was also left with the distinct impression that this young, Muslim teenager was beginning to mature into the religion and culture into which she was born, by the fact that she enjoyed visiting the Mosque with her family (something they had done rarely) and striving to achieve the Ramadan fast. So while her expectations and desires appeared superficially American, her grounding was in the culture into which she was born.

This novel also reminded me of the meaning of breakfast!

I shall be donating my copy, which I have tried to keep in pristine condition,
to our local library to encourage its
greater exposure.

Have you read Medeia's book?
Are you a YA writer/ a Fan of YA novels?

7 comments:

  1. This sounds so fun! I've added it to my TBR :)

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  2. Thanks so much for posting your thoughts, Madeleine. :) And thank you for donating it to the library. I do that myself from time to time.

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  3. I haven't read it yet, but look forward to doing so...

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  4. Hey, I do that too: donate books by my fellow writers to the local library. It's a little more difficult with eBooks, though...

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  5. I have the book, but I haven't had a chance to read it yet. I really need to soon so that I can remind people about it.

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  6. I haven't yet read it, but I've seen it around a number of times, and I always think the cover is fun :-)

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