My Review of “A Place For Us” by Fatima Farheen Mirza
Title: Family Tradition and Love
“A Place for Us” by Fatima Farheen Mirza is intriguing and captivating story of an Indian-American Muslim family. The struggle and conflict of observing one’s faith, tradition, needs and wants is intense. A constant theme of finding balance in a complicated society. The genres for the novel are Fiction and Women’s Fiction. The story mostly takes place in California. The timeline in this story vacillate between the past and present as it pertains to the events and characters.
The author describes her colorful cast of characters as complicated, complex and confused. The story can be told as seen through the eyes of each character. I appreciate that the author describes the religion, and traditions, culture and food, and clothing. Hadia, the oldest daughter in the family is getting married to a man that she chose herself, breaking away from the tradition of having a husband chosen for her. Hadia is a physician and has invited their estranged brother Amar to her wedding. Amar does come to the wedding, and surprises his parents Layla and Rafiq , and his other sister Huma. Betrayals, conflicts, and questions of forgiveness come up at this time.
The author describes the time period around 9/11, when Rafiq encourages his daughters to wear American clothes, not to be singled out. Amar gets into a major racist fight at school, when other students accuse him of being a terrorist. The students tell him to go home. Amar tries to deal with the fact that America is his home.
The author discusses the family dynamics of love, support , change, forgiveness, acceptance and hope. I would recommend this story for those readers who appreciate an emotional conflicted inspirational story. I received an ARC for my honest review.