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Publishers WeeklyAmerican Muslim women give first-person accounts of the challenges and joys of falling in love in this well-meaning but uninspired collection of essays. Punk rocker Tanzila Ahmed finds herself entranced by a bad boy musician with a "six-month itch;" Leila Khan's mother prepares dinner for her and her Italian suitor, but in protest of her daughter's relationship with a non-Muslim refuses to remain in the house during his visit; and Yasmine begins a long-distance relationship with a Muslim man who is divorced and has a 6-year old. In the opening essay, "Leap of Faith," Aisha ultimately chooses an arranged marriage despite her initial reluctance, a predicament also explored, albeit in a more complicated and nuanced way, by Mira Nair's film Monsoon Wedding. The stories here have a lot in common with each other-strict parents and internal guilt make appearances in many of the essays, rendering this volume insufficiently distinct and less well written than other first-generation immigrant writing by women. In addition, the prose is often clunky and full of truisms-lines like "I finally felt like a woman" and "I had finally married the man of my destiny" are not out of place here. Good intentions coupled with poor execution make this an admirable, but ultimately disappointing collection.
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