Tuesday, August 20, 2013

If You Could Be Mine

If You Could Be Mine
Author: Sara Farizan
Publication Date: August 20, 2103
Publisher: Algonquin Young Adult

Idgie Says:
This is truly a very different book than I have read before - and if you know me, you know how much I read and how rare it is I can say something like that!

First off - For the MATURE Young Adult reader.  This novel has very adult themes and scenes in it.  There is violence, crime, prostitution, transgender discussions and homosexuality.

Sahar is a typical 17 year old girl in that she feels love and angst deeply, passionately and not always with a rational mind.  The difference in this novel is that she and her best friend, Nasrin, are in love with each other... and being a homosexual can lead to death in Iran.  When Nasrin becomes engaged via an arranged marriage, Sahar has the brilliant idea of changing her sex (allowed in Iran!) so that she will become a man and be able to win Nasrin's hand in marriage.  Forgetting of course that she will be a 17 year old man with no money or prospects.  Forgetting that she wouldn't receive permission from Nasrin's parents regardless.  But, alas, youth. 

This is a very in your face depiction of not only living in Iran, but being a homosexual teenager in general.  It is very well written, entertaining as well as enlightening, and I was engrossed the entire way through.

Kudos to Sara Farizan for bringing this story out of her mind and into the written word for us all to share and enjoy.

Book Description:
In this stunning debut, a young Iranian American writer pulls back the curtain on one of the most hidden corners of a much-talked-about culture.

Seventeen-year-old Sahar has been in love with her best friend, Nasrin, since they were six. They’ve shared stolen kisses and romantic promises. But Iran is a dangerous place for two girls in love—Sahar and Nasrin could be beaten, imprisoned, even executed if their relationship came to light.

So they carry on in secret—until Nasrin’s parents announce that they’ve arranged for her marriage. Nasrin tries to persuade Sahar that they can go on as they have been, only now with new comforts provided by the decent, well-to-do doctor Nasrin will marry. But Sahar dreams of loving Nasrin exclusively—and openly.

Then Sahar discovers what seems like the perfect solution. In Iran, homosexuality may be a crime, but to be a man trapped in a woman’s body is seen as nature’s mistake, and sex reassignment is legal and accessible. As a man, Sahar could be the one to marry Nasrin. Sahar will never be able to love the one she wants, in the body she wants to be loved in, without risking her life. Is saving her love worth sacrificing her true self?

Read an excerpt HERE.