Monday, 30 January 2017

Sofia Khan is Not Obliged

Sofia Khan can’t believe her possible husband-to-be wants her to live with his family, with a hole-in-the-wall so they will never have privacy. She wants to marry a Muslim but she must draw the line somewhere. When she gives her boss the idea of a Muslim dating book, little does she know she’s expected to write it too. Sofia is ready to give up on men, but with the advance in her bank account, she dives into the world of online dating.

Better to be undignified for a few moments, than undignified for a lifetime.

How can you not love Sofia Khan? She’s so honest about her research for her book on her dates, it’s fantastic. I mean she’s honest in general, except when hiding her father’s contraband, and she sticks to her guns. She’s not really expecting her dates to go anywhere, so she doesn’t really try at first. The modern world of Muslim dating is not all that different to mainstream dating; with weird expectations, dashed hopes and a long line of false starts.

In a lot of ways this book reminded me of Bridget Jones. They are both under pressure to marry at a point in their lives where some people think it’s too late. They both work in publishing and know they should probably smoke less. They both write in an informal, diary style with plenty of warmth and realism.

People are always going to ask when you're getting married. That's what makes people actually get married.

People make snap judgements all the time. In fact, Sofia makes assumptions about her white Irish neighbour, which turn out to be so far from the truth. Even her own mother thinks Sofia is making life harder for herself by wearing a hijab, but it’s what she wants and she sticks to it. Although there is an amazing part where she accidentally ends up with a t-shirt on her head instead. At least is wasn’t pants!

Whilst Sofia is busy dating, she also asks her friends and family about their dating experiences to include in her book. One is a second wife, another divorced and older generations had a different outlook altogether. Her sister is preparing for her own marriage too, less worried about the in-laws than Sofia.

Note for book: No one falls in love any more. (Bit sad? Tough. That's life.)

I would love to see more books like this. It’s easy to read and loads of fun, but books like this can only help with the general perception of Muslims, in a time when it’s sadly needed. Sofia could be any of one your friends. Probably the people that need to read it most won’t, but there might also be people that are just a bit unsure of what Islam actually means, and this lovely character shows you can combine religion with the modern world.

Anyway, I'm pretty excited that there's a sequel coming out in April. Sofia Khan is Not Obliged is still available super cheap as an ebook, so give it a go!

Goodreads | Amazon | Waterstones | Hive | Wordery




Book Source: Purchased

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you loved this as much as I did! You're totally right that sadly the people who really need to read this are probably the least likely to pick it up. It feels to me like the kind of book that should be given to people in high school. Less stuffy Dickens and more stuff like this that helps people understand other religions and cultures while also just been a bloody good book. I can't wait for the next one in the Spring!

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