By Sheba Karim
Farrar Straus Giroux, Hardcover, 9780374370114, 231pp.
Publication Date: March 31, 2009
List Price: $16.95*
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If Nina Khan were to rate herself on the unofficial Pakistani prestige point system - the one she's sure all the aunties and uncles use to determine the most attractive marriage prospects for their children - her scoring might go something like this:
+2 points for getting excellent grades
-3 points for failing to live up to expectations set by genius older sister
+4 points for dutifully obeying parents and never, ever going to parties, no matter how antisocial that makes her seem to everyone at Deer Hook High
-1 point for harboring secret jealousy of her best friends, who are allowed to date like normal teenagers
+2 points for never drinking an alcoholic beverage
-10 points for obsessing about Asher Richelli, who talks to Nina like she's not a freak at all, even though he knows that she has a disturbing line of hair running down her back
In this wryly funny debut novel, the smart, sassy, and utterly lovable Nina Khan tackles friends, family, and love, and learns that it's possible to embrace two very different cultures - even if things can get a little bit, well, "hairy.
“Karim’s first novel provides a rare exploration of Muslim culture and will be a welcome addition to teen collections.” —Booklist
“A solid choice.” —School Library Journal
“In this debut, episodic novel, rife with smart, self-deprecating humor . . . Nina searches for identity and emerging independence while accepting the reality of her home life.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Whether they share Nina’s circumstances or not, readers will readily identify with her struggle, and they’ll find her an endearing and admirable literary companion.” —Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
"This is one of the funniest books anyone can read."—A YALSA YA Galley Teen Reader
"The book was a quick read and taught me a lot about the Muslim culture. The author uses everyday language, so anybody can read it. There aren’t that many books out there that has such an interesting point of view (from a Muslim’s perspective)." —A YALSA YA Galley Teen Reader
"The story was really entertaining, I didn't want to put it down." —A YALSA YA Galley Teen Reader
"This was a fun read that left me . . . thinking."—Rebecca, 13
"Pleae write a sequel,"— Cecelia, age 13