Written In The Stars by Aisha Saeed
Genre: Young Adult – Contemporary, Romance
Publication Date: March 2015
My Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Read July 2017
This heart-wrenching novel explores what it is like to be thrust into an unwanted marriage. Has Naila’s fate been written in the stars? Or can she still make her own destiny?
Naila’s conservative immigrant parents have always said the same thing: She may choose what to study, how to wear her hair, and what to be when she grows up—but they will choose her husband. Following their cultural tradition, they will plan an arranged marriage for her. And until then, dating—even friendship with a boy—is forbidden. When Naila breaks their rule by falling in love with Saif, her parents are livid. Convinced she has forgotten who she truly is, they travel to Pakistan to visit relatives and explore their roots. But Naila’s vacation turns into a nightmare when she learns that plans have changed—her parents have found her a husband and they want her to marry him, now! Despite her greatest efforts, Naila is aghast to find herself cut off from everything and everyone she once knew. Her only hope of escape is Saif . . . if he can find her before it’s too late.
One of my favourite things about reading is being able to learn something new and live an entirely different life with every single book that I read. Going into this book, I knew absolutely nothing about Pakistan, but I took away so much new knowledge from this story, and it was a really big eye-opener. This story is one that will truly stick with me forever.
I really enjoyed the romance factor of the story, and I was truly rooting for Naila and Saif. My heart ached for them, and I wanted nothing more than for them to be able to have each other and be happy. What Naila’s parents were doing was so incredibly unfair to both of them!
As the events of the story unfolded, there was this little bubble of rage inside of me that grew, and grew, and grew until I could hardly contain it. I was just so angry with Naila parents because they were so wrong! What they were doing to her didn’t make any sense and it was so, so so unfair, I wanted to scream!
It was so heart wrenching and painful to read about the situation that Naila was in, and there was this feeling of suffocation as I read the book because I so dearly wanted to do something to help her, but obviously I was absolutely powerless; I hated having to wait and see what would happen to her!
My one complaint about the s\novel was that the chapters were extraordinarily short, with literally only 3 or 4 pages each. This made for an incredibly quick read, but also made some scenes go by way to fast for my taste. For example, I would have liked a little bit more at the beginning of the book before her family goes to Pakistan. I feel like having a tiny bit more background information on her life at home in America would have really benefitted the story. I also would have liked a longer prom scene, since it was a mere few pages of the book and we hardly got to see Naila actually enjoying her prom.
Also, sometimes the author did this thing where she would sort of skip over scenes of the story and jump from one setting to another. This really annoyed me because I wanted to see how Naila got from one place to the next and it broke the flow of the story and made a lot of the scenes very choppy.
SPOILER ALERT: I was pretty pleased with the ending of the story and it was extremely relieving to know that Naila was able to escape the horrid situation that she was unjustly placed in. I just hate that she was stuck there for so long.
Other than the too short chapters and lack of flow between certain scenes, this book was incredible. It’s filled with so much hope, heartache, and pain, as well as many important lessons and knowledge to take away from the book.
Is Written In The Stars on your TBR?
Have you already read it? What did you learn from it?
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