Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Book Review: Sofia Khan is Not Obliged

By Ayisha Malik
Published by twenty7
Available in ebook
Forthcoming in paperback

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Sofia Khan is in need of a husband…or at least that’s what her family think. They are desperate for her to get married, her boss is demanding she writes a book on Muslim dating and her boyfriend wants her to move in with his parents.

Sofia Khan is Not Obliged, Ayisha Malik’s debut novel is a funny and witty story of Sofia as she tries to find (and even lose) love, and deal with her demanding family.  Think of the family from East is East and you’ll know what I mean. Sofia’s personal life is chaotic – her sister is getting married, her father is trying to hid the fact that he’s still smoking, and her mother is obsessed with pleasing everyone. Mixed in with her publishing job, in which she must write a dating manual, and her complicated friends. Sofia must find her own path in life but she is brave enough to make the jump and escape society’s expectations?

Sofia is a flawed character but this makes her more likable to the reader. The chatty style makes Sofia feel like you’re catching up with an old friend, and I found the characters comforting. Sometimes you need some light relief from everyday life, and I can promise you that this book will give you this escape.

On many occasions this book reminded me of Bridget Jones’s Diary. Both books are similar in tone – chatty and friendly but structurally Sofia Khan is Not Obliged fits with modern life with Sofia’s story told through blog entries, texts and extracts from Sofia’s book in progress.

Malik explores the push and pull between modern life and traditional customs with Sofia’s battle to not find love. Yet, this book isn’t all light hearted fun. Serious issues are tackled with polygamous marriages, dating outside the religion, the way Muslims are perceived by non-Muslims. This fast paced, engaging novel will entertain and educate you.

If you’re looking for a book to cheer you up on these drab and drizzly autumn evenings then this is the book for you.

I was kindly sent a paperback version of this book.

No comments: