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All My Rage
Cover of All My Rage
All My Rage
A Novel
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National Book Award WINNERAn INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!An INSTANT INDIE BESTSELLER!"All My Rage is a love story, a tragedy and an infectious teenage fever dream about what home means when you...
National Book Award WINNERAn INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!An INSTANT INDIE BESTSELLER!"All My Rage is a love story, a tragedy and an infectious teenage fever dream about what home means when you...
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  • National Book Award WINNER
    An INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!
    An INSTANT INDIE BESTSELLER!
    "All My Rage is a love story, a tragedy and an infectious teenage fever dream about what home means when you feel you don’t fit in." — New York Times Book Review
    From #1 New York Times bestselling author Sabaa Tahir comes a brilliant, unforgettable, and heart-wrenching contemporary novel about family and forgiveness, love and loss, in a sweeping story that crosses generations and continents.

    Lahore, Pakistan. Then.
    Misbah is a dreamer and storyteller, newly married to Toufiq in an arranged match. After their young life is shaken by tragedy, they come to the United States and open the Clouds' Rest Inn Motel, hoping for a new start.
     
    Juniper, California. Now.
    Salahudin and Noor are more than best friends; they are family. Growing up as outcasts in the small desert town of Juniper, California, they understand each other the way no one else does. Until The Fight, which destroys their bond with the swift fury of a star exploding.  
     
    Now, Sal scrambles to run the family motel as his mother Misbah’s health fails and his grieving father loses himself to alcoholism. Noor, meanwhile, walks a harrowing tightrope: working at her wrathful uncle’s liquor store while hiding the fact that she’s applying to college so she can escape him—and Juniper—forever.
     
    When Sal’s attempts to save the motel spiral out of control, he and Noor must ask themselves what friendship is worth—and what it takes to defeat the monsters in their pasts and the ones in their midst.  
     
    From one of today’s most cherished and bestselling young adult authors comes a breathtaking novel of young love, old regrets, and forgiveness—one that’s both tragic and poignant in its tender ferocity.
    (Cover may vary)
 

Awards-

Excerpts-

  • From the cover

    chapter 1

    Misbah

    June, then

    Lahore, Pakistan

    The clouds over Lahore were purple as a gossip’s tongue the day my mother told me I would wed.

    After she delivered the news, I found my father on the veranda. He sipped a cup of tea and surveyed the storm looming above the kite-­spattered skyline.

    Change her mind! I wanted to scream. Tell her I’m not ready.

    Instead, I stood at his side, a child again, waiting for him to take care of me. I did not have to speak. My father looked at me, and he knew.

    “Come now, little butterfly.” He turned his moth-­brown eyes to mine and patted my shoulder. “You are strong like me. You will make the best of it. And at last, you’ll be free of your mother.” He smiled, only half joking.

    The monsoon rain swept over Lahore a few minutes later, sending chickens and children squawking for cover, drenching the cement floor of our home. I bent my head to the ground in prayer regardless.

    Let my future husband be gentle, I thought, remembering the bruises on my cousin Amna, who married a light-­haired English businessman against her parents’ wishes.Let him be a good man.

    I was eighteen. Full of fear. I should have prayed instead for a man unbroken.

    chapter 2

    Sal

    February, now

    Juniper, California

    It’s 6:37 a.m. and my father doesn’t want me to know how drunk he is.

    “Sal? Are you listening?”

    He calls me Sal instead of Salahudin so I don’t hear the slur in his words. Hangs on to our Civic’s steering wheel like it’s going to steal his wallet and bolt.

    In the ink-­black morning, all I see of Abu’s eyes are his glasses. The taillights of traffic going into school reflect off the thick square lenses. He’s had them so long that they’re hipster now. A Mojave Desert howler shakes the car—­one of those three-­day winds that rampage through your skin and colonize your ventricles. I hunch deep in my fleece, breath clouding.

    “I will be there,” Abu says. “Don’t worry. Okay, Sal?”

    My nickname on his lips is all wrong. It’s like by saying it, he’s trying to make me feel like he’s a friend, instead of a mess masquerading as my father.

    If Ama were here, she would clear her throat and enunciate “Sa-­lah-­ud-­din,” the precise pronunciation a gentle reminder that she named me for the famous Muslim general, and I better not forget it.

    “You said you’d go to the last appointment, too,” I tell Abu.

    “Dr. Rothman called last night to remind me,” Abu says. “You don’t have to come, if you have the—­the writing club, or soccer.”

    “Soccer season’s over. And I quit the newspaper last semester. I’ll be at the appointment. Ama’s not taking care of herself and someone needs to tell Dr. Rothman—­preferably in a coherent sentence.” I watch the words hit him, sharp little stones.

    Abu guides the car to the curb in front of Juniper High. A bleached-­blond head buried in a parka materializes from the shadows of C-­hall. Ashlee. She saunters past the flagpole, through the crowds of students, and toward the Civic. The pale stretch of her legs is courageous for the twenty-­degree weather.

    Also distracting.

    Ashlee is close enough to the car that I can see her purple nail polish. Abu hasn’t spotted her. He and Ama never said...

Reviews-

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from December 1, 2021

    Gr 9 Up-In a genre flip from fantasy, Tahir has created a contemporary novel that spans both time and place. In past Pakistan, Misbah weds Toufiq in an arranged marriage that results in a move to California after upheaval at home. Now they run a small hotel in the Mojave Desert. Their son Salahudin and dear family friend Noor hold a connection bound by their history and the challenges they face due to Islamophobia, racism, and more. When his mother's health fails and his father battles alcoholism as he grieves, the financial and maintenance aspects of the hotel fall to Sal, who takes drastic measures to save the hotel his mother loved so very much. Simultaneously, Noor is striving to leave her uncle's grasp by planning to go away to college, but finds herself caught up by Sal's choices. Tahir's lyrical prose unpacks both the beautiful and the brutal. She deftly captures the layers of grief, rage, family, examination of faith, and forgiveness, while managing to inject levity into dire situations and provide a semblance of hope. Music aficionados will revel in the songs referenced throughout various scenes in the book. VERDICT This deep dive into the complex ferocity of emotions within families is a love letter to Pakistani culture and revelations from the past that test the boundaries of survival. Put this book at the top of your list.-Lisa Krok, Morley Lib., Cleveland, OH

    Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    January 1, 2022
    Seniors Salahudin and Noor, both 18, are caught in the throes of life in the small California desert town of Juniper, where being a working-class person of color means being treated differently. With pervasive racism coming from everyone from classmates to police officers and doctors, Juniper is a sinkhole that the estranged best friends are desperate to leave. But instead of worrying about college and his future career prospects, Salahudin is preoccupied with his mother's kidney failure, his father's alcoholism, his family's deteriorating motel, and Noor, who hasn't spoken to him in months. Orphaned Noor's dreams of college are slowly waning; her malicious Pakistani immigrant uncle, who hates all things Pakistani, has made it clear that Noor's future involves working behind the counter of his liquor store. Life was easier when she had Salahudin and his kind mother, Misbah, in her life, but a fight has left her unable to forgive him, at least for now. Chapters alternate between Noor's and Salahudin's perspectives, with snippets of Misbah's past sprinkled throughout. This novel confronts head on the complicated realities of life in a world that is not designed for the oppressed to thrive in. Tahir brilliantly shows how interconnected societal forces shape communities and people's lives through the accumulated impact of circumstances beyond their control: Substance abuse, debt, racism, trauma, and poverty are intricately woven together to tell a deeply moving, intergenerational story. Takes readers on an unforgettable emotional journey. (Fiction. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2022) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    February 1, 2022
    Grades 10-12 *Starred Review* Acclaimed fantasy author Tahir (An Ember in the Ashes series) makes her contemporary-fiction debut with this novel about estranged friends Salahudin and Noor, who are finding their way back to each other--or not--in the wake of Salahudin's mother's death. While Salahudin is confronted with the possibility of the loss of the family motel and Noor with the loss of the future she's dreamed about ever since surviving an earthquake in Pakistan, both are forced to make difficult choices that will retest their already-shaky relationship. Through the alternating perspectives of her characters that include interludes from the past, Tahir skillfully and with nuanced handling navigates themes of abuse, found family, guilt, racism and Islamaphobia, generational baggage, trauma, and more. A damning storyline involving the criminal-justice system makes this novel feel starkly real, while a touch of romance and a clever narrative device revealed toward the end leave an impression of everyday magic. Though their stories may be specific ones, these complex and electrifying characters contend with obstacles that many readers will identify with. An unyieldingly earnest generational story for contemporary audiences, Rage is a knife-sharp narrative with an obliterating impact that will leave readers thinking of it long after turning the last page. Fans of Tahereh Mafi's An Emotion of Great Delight (2021) won't want to miss this one.

    COPYRIGHT(2022) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • The Horn Book

    May 1, 2022
    In this stark and searing sort-of love story, two Pakistani American teens living in a California desert town struggle to choose connection over isolation when family crises strike. Salahudin -- artsy, aimless, and anxious -- feels the weight of the pressures posed by his sick mother, his alcoholic father, and the crumbling motel they own, which barely pays the bills. His ambitious and science-minded estranged childhood friend, Noor, needs a hefty scholarship to escape the domineering uncle with whom she lives, but gets rejections instead. Through chapters that alternate between their first-person perspectives, Sal and Noor tell intertwining stories of their urgent attempts to steer their own lives without support from family or their majority-white community. Sal's mother -- whose potent flashbacks of her immigration when she was young are interspersed throughout -- is a reliable model of faith and optimism for both teens; her sudden death at first draws Sal and Noor closer, but grief and guilt soon lead Sal to a cascade of risky, tension-raising decisions that threaten their futures. While some descriptive language, especially dreamy Sal's, borders on melodramatic, the tight focus on each teen's emotional experience reveals a rich layering of determination, trauma, anger, and integrity underneath their raw reactions. This is a brutal depiction of the toll taken on some young marginalized and working-class people trying to conquer the odds; watching Sal's and Noor's devastating loneliness finally give way to glimmers of hope is both satisfying and affecting. Jessica Tackett MacDonald

    (Copyright 2022 by The Horn Book, Incorporated, Boston. All rights reserved.)

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