Adult Books, Blog Tours/Street Teams, Books by Muslim Authors, Favourite Book Quotes

Blog Tour – My Favourite Quotes From Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin

Hey booknerds! Today, as part of the blog tour for Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin, hosted by Coloured Pages Tours, I am sharing my favourite quotes from the book!

If you don’t know what the book is about here is the synopsis:

From the author of Ayesha at Last comes a sparkling new rom-com for fans of “You’ve Got Mail,” set in two competing halal restaurants

Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine, the only halal restaurant in the close-knit Golden Crescent neighbourhood. Hana waitresses there part time, but what she really wants is to tell stories on the radio. If she can just outshine her fellow intern at the city radio station, she may have a chance at landing a job. In the meantime, Hana pours her thoughts and dreams into a podcast, where she forms a lively relationship with one of her listeners. But soon she’ll need all the support she can get: a new competing restaurant, a more upscale halal place, is about to open in the Golden Crescent, threatening Three Sisters.

When her mysterious aunt and her teenage cousin arrive from India for a surprise visit, they draw Hana into a long-buried family secret. A hate-motivated attack on their neighbourhood complicates the situation further, as does Hana’s growing attraction for Aydin, the young owner of the rival restaurant—who might not be a complete stranger after all.

As life on the Golden Crescent unravels, Hana must learn to use her voice, draw on the strength of her community and decide what her future should be.

So here are my top 10 quotes from the book!

Just promise you’ll be careful with your heart, okay? You deserve someone who puts you first.

I only meant that an intelligent young woman – I assume you are intelligent – would not lay all her cards on the table. Gather information, consider your options, and then act accordingly.

I couldn’t hide who I was.

Find your principles and see your story through to the end, no matter what.

Anger was easier, feeling justified in my tactics more satisfying. Trying to change my world was the harder path, and less likely to succeed.

Real change is a boulder we keep pushing, but don’t fool yourself into thinking it doesn’t push back. Because it does. And sometimes it pushes back hard.

If things are changing, that means we’re still alive. Only living things change.

I know now what I will and will not tolerate. I know where my line is, and what I am willing to lose to defend my heart.

Keep chasing the story in your heart.

Choice. That’s what my parents had gifted me. There’s nothing more powerful than being able to make up your own mind about something. Nothing headier than reaching out your hand and saying: This. I choose this.

Do also check out the other posts as part of the blog tour and check out my bookstagram (@thetsundokuchronicles) for a giveaway!

More about Uzma:

I am the author of AYESHA AT LAST (2018), a retelling of Pride and Prejudice set in a Toronto Muslim community. My second novel HANA KHAN CARRIES ON (2021) is inspired by the movie ‘You’ve Got Mail’ and set in rival halal restaurants. I also write a funny parenting column for The Toronto Star, and have written for The Atlantic. I live in Toronto with my husband and two sons. Find out more at www.uzmajalaluddin.com and thanks for visiting!

Adult Books

The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon – ARC Review

Thank you to Bloomsbury publishing for the arc in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Dreamwalker Paige Mahoney has eluded death again. Snatched from the jaws of captivity and consigned to a safe house in the Scion Citadel of Paris, she finds herself caught between those factions that seek Scion’s downfall and those who would kill to protect the Rephaim’s puppet empire.

The mysterious Domino Program has plans for Paige, but she has ambitions of her own in this new citadel. With Arcturus Mesarthim-her former enemy-at her side, she embarks on an adventure that will lead her from the catacombs of Paris to the glittering hallways of Versailles. Her risks promise high reward: the Parisian underworld could yield the means to escalate her rebellion to outright war.


As Scion widens its bounds and the free world trembles in its shadow, Paige must fight her own memories after her ordeal at the hands of Scion. Meanwhile, she strives to understand her bond with Arcturus, which grows stronger by the day. But there are those who know the revolution began with them-and could end with them.

I have to say I have mixed feelings about this book. I liked some parts and some not so much. I enjoyed the slow burn of Paige and Warden’s relationship. I think in this book we finally get to see their relationship develop as they have the chance to actually discuss how they feel.

I liked seeing other parts of this world and what’s happening outside of England and the characters we are introduced to and some characters we had previously met made an appearance again but I really missed Nick and Eliza. I hope we get to see them again in the next book! They were y favourite side characters and I truly think this book was weaker without them in it with Paige.

I had issues with the pacing and how slow the book was. It took me a while to get through it as I would put it down and not pick it up for days but the ending was more interesting. A lot happens at the end and I wish we could have gotten more of that instead. We get lots of revelations that have been building up in the last two books and it was interesting to get some answers of some of the mysteries and revelations of who was pulling the strings behind the scenes.

I’m still not sold on Paige and Warden as a couple though. I still think we don’t know much about Warden and how he feels and thinks outside of Paige’s perspective and it just meant that I couldn’t really connect with him despite being four books in. We get some more information about the Rephaim but they are still very much a mystery. By this point it made them less interesting as characters especially as we barely see them in the book. Also I feel a bit annoyed by the fact that some Rephaim have names like Arcturus and Terebell and yet the antagonists have PoC sounding names like Nashira and Suhail.

This book deals a lot with Paige’s recovery and how she manages after being tortured and the PTSD she has. I thought it was dealt with quite well seeing her struggle and freeze because of it. The lasting effects it had on her body physically. I really liked seeing that in the book.

When we first met Paige I really loved her and I loved how much she grew in the Mime Order but since I have felt she has become more reckless and runs head first before thinking things through which resulted in a lot of problems in this book and I just felt that someone who is supposed to be running a revolution needs to be less reckless. I think that’s why I missed Eliza and Nick a lot too because I felt they grounded her and guided her to be less reckless and think things through. The ending especially regarding Warden and how Paige dealt with it was something I wasn’t a fan of because we see them develop and yet Paige easily believes what happens at the end without questioning it until it is too late.

Overall I liked this book but I do have some issues with pacing and Paige’s arc (or seemingly lack thereof). I feel like there wasn’t a lot of progress in the book as to her goals to lead a revolution. It takes her the whole book to make the alliances necessary. I am hoping that the next book will have some more progression and we will hopefully see the characters from previous books again.

Adult Books, Diverse Books

Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse – ARC Review

I was sent this arc in exchange for an honest review.

I loved this book so much! The world and the characters were so incredible and complex and I just loved everything about it.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

In the holy city of Tova, the winter solstice is usually a time for celebration and renewal, but this year it coincides with a solar eclipse, a rare celestial event proscribed by the Sun Priest as an unbalancing of the world.

Meanwhile, a ship launches from a distant city bound for Tova and set to arrive on the solstice. The captain of the ship, Xiala, is a disgraced Teek whose song can calm the waters around her as easily as it can warp a man’s mind. Her ship carries one passenger. Described as harmless, the passenger, Serapio, is a young man, blind, scarred, and cloaked in destiny. As Xiala well knows, when a man is described as harmless, he usually ends up being a villain.

I had no idea what to expect when I started reading but this book crawled into my heart and burrowed itself in and made itself at home. From the storytelling to the world building to the characters, every single thing about this book is absolutely phenomenal.

The story starts with a line that had me completely hooked and I knew this book would hurt me. The first chapter is set 10 years before the events in this story and it creates an ominous start for the book with hints as to the darkness to come. I loved seeing this before we start as it gave us some important insight without giving away the entire story and plot. The story slowly builds us up to the finale where the separate stories of each of the characters start to merge and we see how the different parts we saw in the book fit together. And what a finale it was, it had me completely enthralled and worried for the lives of all the characters hoping for an outcome where they all survive yet having that sinking feeling that will that even be possible and being left on an ending that had me screaming.

Usually, when someone describes a man as harmless, he ends up being a villain.

The characters are all so complex and we see how none of them are clear cut good or bad. They have been shaped by their circumstances and events that took place even before they were born. They have to deal with the consequences of those that are no longer there to be taken account of and it was so interesting to see which of these characters were truly the villain or even if there was a single villain. Rebecca did this so well and I was rooting for each character even though they each had their flaws they were all working to make things better for their people or trying to survive and yet not seeing how their decisions impact others outside of who they consider their own.

Xiala was such a wonderful character and I just loved slowly learning about her and the people she came from. The Teek are so interesting and the things she even learns about herself along this journey made me love her even more. I loved her confidence and how she cared for the people she was in charge of and that her skills and ability had made her somewhat respected even though the men didn’t generally accept women as captains. Her relationship with Serapio was also so wonderful. I just loved their tentative friendship and how they found comfort in each other and how it slowly grew to something more. I just love them.

A man with a destiny is a man who fears nothing.

Serapio is fascinating, he is truly been shaped by others and has been honed to be a weapon to seek vengeance for an injustice that happened before he was born but he has no say in whether he wanted that or not. His destiny is all he has known and lived and breathed and seeing what happens at the end my heart felt for him but I also wanted to scream at him to not do it.

Narampa was another interesting character, she has fought her way to the top to become the sun priest but despite this she is never truly accepted by her peers because of where she came from. She is trying to make things better for them but they don’t want to accept what she is doing and yet while she works tirelessly for those who scorn her, her family and people she grew up with are ignored and continue to suffer and even she looks down on them. Yet when she needs help she ends up turning to those she left behind. It was really interesting to see how no matter how high you rise those in power won’t accept you, if you aren’t one of them.

I am the only storm that matters now, and there is no shelter from what I bring.

One of my favourite things in this book was that it was inspired by Pre Columbian America and the whole world and mythology that Rebecca has created was so stunningly beautiful and honestly a breath of fresh air. It had so much depth and the culture and the way of life, I loved it so much. Indigenous cultures are so beautiful and wonderful and truly I hope we get more books with their cultures showing just how rich these cultures are.

This book had me completely enthralled and while I loved all the characters, Xiala and Serapio stole my heart and I just need to know more about them and see more of them. This is a book that will have you mesmerised by the world and falling in love with the characters and you will be left thinking about this book long after you have finished it.

Adult Books, Books by Muslim Authors, Muslim Shelf Space

The Black Khan by Ausma Zehanat Khan – Book Review

This is the sequel to The Bloodprint and I just loved it so much. You can read my review for The Bloodprint here

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

To fight against the cruel and superstitious patriarchy known as the Talisman, members of the resistance group known as the Companions of Hira have risked their lives in a failed attempt to procure the Bloodprint—a dangerous text that may hold the secret to overthrowing the terrifying regime. Now, with their plans in ashes, the Companions of Hira have scattered, and the lives of two brave women at the centre of the plot—Arian and Sinnia—face unprecedented danger.

Yet a spark of hope flickers in the darkness—the Bloodprint has survived. It is hidden in Ashfall, the seat of Rukh, the Black Khan, whose court is ruled by intrigue and conspiracy. Treacherous enemies ruthlessly manoeuvre for power behind the throne, including the autocratic Grand Vizier; the deadly and secretive Assassin; the Khan’s deposed half-brother; and the commander of Ashfall’s army, who is also Rukh’s oldest friend.

The Companions of Hira must somehow reunite, break through Talisman lines, and infiltrate Ashfall. A master of treachery himself, the Black Khan joins forces with these powerful women to manipulate them for his own ends. But as Ashfall comes under siege, he is forced to make a deadly calculation… one that could cause irrevocable damage to the Companions and their fight for freedom. 

This book picks up right where the Bloodprint ends and it is a dark book and so painful to read at times but I loved it so much. We see what happens to each of the characters after the ending of the Bloodprint and what they suffer through as they were betrayed by the Black Khan and left as prisoners. Arian and Sinnia have been separated and are unable to help each other. Daniyar is also a prisoner with Arian and is forced to fight to the death every night while Arian is forced to watch. Sinnia has been taken and is being tortured and honestly the first half of the book was incredibly difficult to read at times. But it shows how far people will go to show their dominance and control. Even twisting holy words which advocate for justice to suit their needs.

I did love seeing that Daniyar and Arian really care for each other and that they are willing to endure so much for each. We see that they truly love each other even though Arian will always choose the companions and her responsibilities she still does love Daniyar. It’s such a bittersweet relationship because they have such immense responsibilities that means they can’t be together truly but they are also drawn to each other no matter what happens to them.

Sinnia and Arian’s friendship and sisterhood is such a beautiful thing to see in books, I love seeing wonderful female friendships. There is no jealousy or resentment between them, they love each other and support each other through everything. I also loved seeing Sinnia with the two sisters who saved her when she was being tortured. I hope we get to see more of them in the next book.

The Black Khan has the Bloodprint and has taken it to Ashfall to help with the siege by the Talisman. He is a complex and confusing character, I’m still not sure how I feel about him. At times it seems that he is trying to do what is right and other times it seems as though he has ulterior motives and will sacrifice anyone and everything to gain what he desires. He pursues Arian even though she makes it clear that she is not interested and in love with Daniyar. He refuses to allow his sister to go and study and fulfil her dreams of joining the companions and studying. He is very misogynistic but also allows women in positions of power and is very contradictory. I think he does only what will keep him in power.

This story is as enthralling as The Bloodprint. I loved seeing the characters again and seeing how they interact after everything they have been through. I also liked seeing the new characters and particularly loved the Black Khan’s sister. The ending of this book is devastating and left me wrecked me. I am actually terrified of reading the next book. But also looking forward to seeing what will happen next.

Adult Books, Diverse Books

Winters Orbit by Everina Maxwell – ARC Review

Thank you to Orbit books for this arc in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed this book and really loved both main characters.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

While the Iskat Empire has long dominated the system through treaties and political alliances, several planets, including Thea, have begun to chafe under Iskat’s rule. When tragedy befalls Imperial Prince Taam, his Thean widower, Jainan, is rushed into an arranged marriage with Taam’s cousin, the disreputable Kiem, in a bid to keep the rising hostilities between the two worlds under control.

But when it comes to light that Prince Taam’s death may not have been an accident, and that Jainan himself may be a suspect, the unlikely pair must overcome their misgivings and learn to trust one another as they navigate the perils of the Iskat court, try to solve a murder, and prevent an interplanetary war… all while dealing with their growing feelings for each other.

TW: Discussions of abuse and torture

This story focuses on Jainan and Kiem and how their worlds collide when they have to get married to keep their respective planets alliance. Both of them agree to it as it’s their duty but they don’t really have much time to really know each other before getting married and are thrown straight into the deep end.

They are both such different characters and have such different personalities that they initially have difficulty understanding each other and I was literally screaming at them at points because they are both smart yet are completely ridiculous when it comes to each other. Their miscommunication results in a lot of angst and tension and I was living for it. It built up the tension so much so that when they finally resolved it, it was so satisfying. Also we got the only one bed trope with a twist and I just loved seeing their relationship develop as they learnt to understand each other.

I felt the story is very character driven, we spend a lot of time in both the main characters heads and we really get to know about them and how their pasts affect them now and I loved how we get to see them trying their best to make the marriage work but just not reading the other correctly because of their own past traumas and assumptions and it just felt so real. Jainan is a cinnamon roll and I will protect him with my life, he suffered so much especially the things we find out about his marriage to Taam and honestly it was so difficult to read about it. Kiem is so sweet and truly I need more characters like them in books.

I loved how they worked together using their own skill sets to help each other and find a solution to stop a war from happening and that they encouraged each other in pursuing their passions.

I do wish we had gotten to see more of the world, we get glimpses but mostly how the politics affect the characters and them trying to work out what happened to Taam. We do get indications of a wider world and I would love to read more stories in this world. One of my favourite side characters was Bel who we get to learn a little bit about and honestly I could read a whole book with her.

Overall I really enjoyed this book and the characters arcs were so great to read.