Sorry this one is a little late (for my time zone anyway). I’m a little tired, so apologies if that translates into my writing here.
Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme created by Aimal at Bookshelves and Paperbacks that focuses on highlighting diverse books. The rules are simple. You need to pick three books to post about, one for each of the below categories, in Aimal’s words:
- A diverse book you have read and enjoyed
- A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read
- A diverse book that has not yet been released
So without further ado:
Diverse Book I’ve Read
I read this as part of Julia Ember’s retelling challenge in December 2016. I have the worst memory right now but I wrote a review about it when I read it here. It’s a really good take on the Cinderella fairytale, with f/f!
In the wake of her father’s death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, rereading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.
The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash’s capacity for love—and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.
Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief.
Diverse Book on my TBR
I’m reading this one for my contemporary arranged marriage square in the Diversity Bingo. It’s been on my TBR since forever ago. In order to balance things out and have a positive arranged marriage story as well, I’m also reading WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI for the Indian MC square.
This heart-wrenching novel explores what it is like to be thrust into an unwanted marriage. Has Naila’s fate been written in the stars? Or can she still make her own destiny?
Naila’s conservative immigrant parents have always said the same thing: She may choose what to study, how to wear her hair, and what to be when she grows up—but they will choose her husband. Following their cultural tradition, they will plan an arranged marriage for her. And until then, dating—even friendship with a boy—is forbidden. When Naila breaks their rule by falling in love with Saif, her parents are livid. Convinced she has forgotten who she truly is, they travel to Pakistan to visit relatives and explore their roots. But Naila’s vacation turns into a nightmare when she learns that plans have changed—her parents have found her a husband and they want her to marry him, now! Despite her greatest efforts, Naila is aghast to find herself cut off from everything and everyone she once knew. Her only hope of escape is Saif . . . if he can find her before it’s too late.
Diverse Book Releasing Soon
We need more novels with hijabi MCs. If I’d known about this one earlier in the year, I would’ve added it to my bingo from the outset. As it is, I’ve rejigged my bingo TBR to put it on since I had to rearrange things anyway to account for my many mistakes. Oops. On the upside, I get to read this! Check out the excerpt here.
Saints and Misfits is an unforgettable debut novel that feels like a modern day My So-Called Life…starring a Muslim teen.
How much can you tell about a person just by looking at them?
Janna Yusuf knows a lot of people can’t figure out what to make of her…an Arab Indian-American hijabi teenager who is a Flannery O’Connor obsessed book nerd, aspiring photographer, and sometime graphic novelist is not exactly easy to put into a box.
And Janna suddenly finds herself caring what people think. Or at least what a certain boy named Jeremy thinks. Not that she would ever date him—Muslim girls don’t date. Or they shouldn’t date. Or won’t? Janna is still working all this out.
While her heart might be leading her in one direction, her mind is spinning in others. She is trying to decide what kind of person she wants to be, and what it means to be a saint, a misfit, or a monster. Except she knows a monster…one who happens to be parading around as a saint…Will she be the one to call him out on it? What will people in her tightknit Muslim community think of her then?