Amie Kaufman, Meagan Spooner, & So Many More Authors Are In Town This Week (YA Book Events 1/15-1/21)

There is so much happening this week! Make sure to plan accordingly because you won’t want to miss any of the incredible launch events happening in the upcoming days. Check out the full schedule of events below and make sure to follow YA Book Events NYC on Twitter to keep up to date with all the bookish events happening around the city.

Monday, Jan. 15

NYC Launch Event for Unearthed by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner at Books of Wonder (6–8 p.m.)

Join Kaufman and Spooner as they share details about their new book, Unearthed, answer questions from the audience, and sign books. Free event.

Wednesday, Jan. 17

NYC Launch Event for Love, Hate, & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed at Books of Wonder (6–8 p.m.)

Debut author Ahmed will be in conversation with NY Times bestselling author Adam Silvera as they discuss her debut novel, Love, Hate, & Other Filters. Free event.

Thursday, Jan. 18

NYC Launch Event for Gunslinger Girl by Lyndsay Ely at Books of Wonder (6–8 p.m.)

Join Ely as she introduces her debut novel, answer questions from the audience, and signs copies of her book. Free event.

An Evening with Erika Sánchez at Solas Bar NYC (6-8 p.m.)

Meet Sánchez, the author of the National Book Award Finalist, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter. Free event; cash bar.

Friday, Jan. 19

Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cumming at Artists & Fleas in SoHo (6:30–9 p.m.) 

Hosted by The Strand, join Alsberg and Cumming as they talk about their novel, Zenith, with Emma Giordano. Conversation begins at 8 p.m. but arrive early for a “space makeover.” Following the conversation there will be a book signing. Admission is $10; admission and a signed copy is $19.99.

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ARC Book Review: Love, Hate, & Other Filters

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Synopsis:

American-born seventeen-year-old Maya Aziz is torn between worlds. There’s the proper one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter: attending a college close to their suburban Chicago home, and being paired off with an older Muslim boy her mom deems “suitable.” And then there is the world of her dreams: going to film school and living in New York City—and maybe (just maybe) pursuing a boy she’s known from afar since grade school, a boy who’s finally falling into her orbit at school.

There’s also the real world, beyond Maya’s control. In the aftermath of a horrific crime perpetrated hundreds of miles away, her life is turned upside down. The community she’s known since birth becomes unrecognizable; neighbors and classmates alike are consumed with fear, bigotry, and hatred. Ultimately, Maya must find the strength within to determine where she truly belongs.

Purchase From:

Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository

Review

*I received a free advanced reader’s copy of this book at BookCon. This did not influence my review of this book in anyway. This is an honest review of the novel as I saw it. This novel will be released on Jan. 16, 2018.*

Love, Hate, and Other Filters provided a perspective that is unfortunately not seen often in YA literature. The novel follows Maya Aziz, an American-born teen who comes from an Indian and Muslim family. From the very start of the novel Maya struggles to find her footing in her two worlds, especially as she prepares to graduate high school and head to college.

Maya hopes to go to New York University (NYU) to follow her dreams to be a filmmaker, but her parents would prefer she stay close to home and attend a school in the midwest (where her family currently resides). Similarly, her parents would also like her to one day marry an Indian man, not someone like Phil, the white guy Maya is currently crushing on.

I thought Samira Ahmed did a great job of presenting Maya’s inner conflict as she tried to determine what was best for her while also struggling to do what her parents wanted her to do. However, because of the synopsis, which also noted that there would be terrorist attack that would greatly affect Maya’s life, I felt the first half of the novel went a little slow.

I was constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop (the terrorist attack), and was left wondering why the story was taking so long to get to, what I thought, would be the main conflict of the story. Then once the attack did happen the story went quite quickly and a lot began happening all at once. The back half of the novel ended up being much more fast paced than first half, however I was a bit shocked by how the novel ended, particularly the actions of Maya’s parents.

Up to the end, I found the way Maya’s parents acted and what they wanted for Maya was understandable, albeit stifling for Maya. Even after the terrorist attack, I understood why they did certain things, particularly out of fear. What I didn’t understand was their vehement feelings towards Maya’s decision about college at the very end. To me, it felt way out of character for the parents, who, throughout the novel, I found to be set in their ways but not outrageous. It just seemed like the book took a crazy turn at the end and then once this occurred the parents aren’t seen again, though the mom is mentioned once.

That plot point aside, I did enjoy Maya as a character. I thought she definitely made some mistakes that I couldn’t fully understand, but overall she was pretty level headed. I also really enjoyed her romance with Phil and her friendship with Violet. I actually would’ve loved to have seen more of Violet, because she was hilarious. I also loved Maya’s aunt, Hina. She was so supportive and felt more like an older sister to Maya than an aunt to me.

Lastly, Ahmed did a great job handling the terrorist attack in the story. I was surprised by how it played out, and I liked the third person point of views that were interwoven between chapters, giving insight into the impending attack and then more insight after it happened. That was an interesting part of this book that I didn’t expect and really liked.

Overall, I didn’t love this book as much as I wanted to, but I think it’s a pretty good read and it’s a perspective that I was definitely interested in learning more about and I feel like I did learn from it. So for that alone I do recommend checking it out when it’s released.

Borrow or Buy: While I enjoyed this book I don’t think I’d reread it so it’d have to be a borrow for me.

Stars:

3 stars

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