Sofia Khan is Not Obliged by Ayisha Malik
Source: City reads via library book club
Genres: Chick-Lit, Women’s Fiction, Contemporary, Romance, Fiction
Publication Date: 2017 (first published 3rd September 2015
Synopsis/Blurb (taken from Goodreads):
“‘Brilliant idea! Excellent! Muslim dating? Well, I had no idea you were allowed to date.’ Then he leaned towards me and looked at me sympathetically. ‘Are your parents quite disappointed?’
Unlucky in love once again after her possible-marriage-partner-to-be proves a little too close to his parents, Sofia Khan is ready to renounce men for good. Or at least she was, until her boss persuades her to write a tell-all expose about the Muslim dating scene.
As her woes become her work, Sofia must lean on the support of her brilliant friends, baffled colleagues and baffling parents as she goes in search of stories for her book. In amongst the marriage-crazy relatives, racist tube passengers and decidedly odd online daters, could there be a a lingering possibility that she might just be falling in love . . . ?”
My Thoughts & Review
It’s been a while since we’ve read a really good book for book club. Although I was really looking forward to reading this book, I was also a little hesitant as I had heard that it was a Pakistani hijabi version of Bridget Jones’ Diary. Also, I’m not really one to pick up a chick-lit often but this one I really enjoyed.
Sofia Khan Is Not Obliged follows a Muslim woman who works in a publishing company and after some stuff that happens she starts writing a book about ‘Muslim Dating”. We follow Sofia through her writing journey as well as her struggle to find herself the perfect man to get married to.
I loved reading about the stereotypical notions around getting married while being Muslim. Although I’m not Muslim, I still found it extremely relatable.
This was an easy and light hearted read but at the same time there were some serious issues covered quite briefly. These included issues such as racism, stereotyping as well as cultural differences.
The characters were very well created and they were quite funny and there were quite a few laugh-out-loud moments. Sofia the main character was really good. Her character came across as very real. She came across very stubborn, but at the same time she’s very funny, with a sarcastic and dry humour. The side characters were also great.
I thought the book was very well written with enough detail to help you visualise exactly what was happening in the book. I really liked the format this book was written in, it was sort of like a diary format but broken up entries from different times during the day. Also, at the start of some chapters there was extracts from the book Sofia was writing. I thought this format worked very well as it made the book easier to read while at the same time making it unique.
I think if this film was ever made into a movie I would be interested in watching it, and I nearly never say that as I’m not one to watch Romcoms often.
Although I loved this book and the story was interesting the ending was very predictable. I actually worked it out about halfway through the book.
All in all, a very funny and enjoyable read. Definitely worth a read especially if you’re a fan of chick-lits and Romcoms. There is a sequel to this book and I think I will try and get a copy from my local library.
Some thoughts from other book club members:
(Spoiler free thoughts)
“This was SO good. My favourite so far.”
“It was so interesting to read about different culture.”
“I didn’t really like it, I didn’t quite understand what was happening,”
“There were a lot of cliches but.”
“There needs to be more ethnic writers”
“We, need more books like this, so glad we read it as I don’t normally read these kinds of books”
Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Leave a comment below and let’s have a chat.