I was first introduced to Adiba Jaigirdar on bookstagram when I first heard about The Henna Wars (Read My Review) – a sapphic romance that literally took my breath away. I am not kidding, it was actually a breath of fresh air for someone who adored the YA genre, but was fast becoming disenchanted with the same old characters being reused over and over again.
Adiba Jaigirdar’s books are the response to those typically white washed experiences that a desi girl, who while enjoying them as a spectator, could never relate to the characters themselves.
Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating is a brown girl’s answer to that. Hani and Ishu are the only two Bangladeshi’s in their Irish school and they couldn’t be more extreme opposites if they tried.
Hani, an out bisexual, is one of the sweetest persons around. She always has a smile on her face, is genuinely helpful to anyone who asks and is quite friendly as well. Ishu, on the other hand, is a focused, could be considered rude, sarcastic and almost unfriendly girl at her school.
When Hani finds out that her friends have trouble accepting her bi-sexuality; she, in desperation, says that she is dating Ishu.Ishu, on the other hand, needs to be well liked to become the head girl, so she can show her parents that she is serious about her future.
Fake dating trope along with an almost enemies to lovers trope in a brown girl sapphic romance will have you absolutely giddy while reading this book.
It’s not all roses though, the trigger warnings are genuine – emotional manipulation, peer pressure, your own confidence in your identity as well the struggles that a brown girl goes through as an immigrant!
While I certainly enjoyed The Henna Wars far more than this, true but Hani and Ishu find their own place in my soul when I read their book!
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