Book review: Love, Hate and Other Filters

Nothing screams a vacation like curling up with a cozy, sweet romance right? The title Love, Hate And Other Filters shouted out me as just what I needed to try and enjoy the hot, sultry summer in the southern part of India. And you what enticed me more – Love, Hate And Other Filters is an #ownvoice book with a Muslim representation, which is kinda rare. So how did it fare, read ahead to find out.

Love, Hate and Other Filters

Book Name: Love, Hate And Other Filters
Author: Samira Ahmed
Genre: Fiction – Romance, Young Adult
Characters: Maya Aziz, Violet, Hina, Phil, Kareem
Setting: Chicago, The USA

Maya Aziz, a typical 17 year old American high schooler loves Indian food and making movies. Her Indian born parents do not take her aspirations to become a film maker seriously and want her to settle down with a serious guy soon.

Love, Hate and Other FiltersMaya has a huge crush on Phil for years, who is already in a relationship. Meanwhile, her conservative parents set her up with Kareem who seems to be a safer bet given their common heritage and family background. Should she stand up against her parents’ wishes for just a ‘maybe’ guy? Or should she try to focus on career like her rebellious aunt Hina?

Her almost perfect world shatters following a terrorists’ attack on the USA. She and her family become the victims of Islamophobia. How does religion affect Maya’s life? Read Love, Hate And Other Filters.

Love, Hate And Other Filters is a witty and fast YA romance. I finished reading the book in one sitting and the setting reminded me so much of When Dimple met Rishi. When I am not such a big fan of lovesick female lead, I loved how the book spoke so much about Indian culture, even though it was a bit over the top at places.

I like my protagonists to be fierce, interesting – erm.. just not bland. Unfortunately Maya was just that. And her ‘relationship’ with Phil had no base except that they knew each other. where is the damn chemistry? Phil you can definitely do better.

I loved Violet, the protagonist’s friend and how fiercely loyal she was to Maya till the end. Phil and Hina were totally cool too. The other Indian characters, especially Maya’s parents were too stereotypical. I mean there is only so many of over dramatic Indian mothers one can read about without rolling one’s eyes.

Love, Hate And Other Filters did okay at being an American-Indian representation, but it is definitely not an accurate Muslim representation.  Love, Hate And Other Filters doesn’t talk about Maya’s religion at all, except when it is used against her. Maya’s family might be liberal Muslims but even that message doesn’t reach clearly. If it were not for her last name, one might not even know she is a Muslim, which is definitely not a good representation.

If you are looking for a YA with light romance or an own voice book you can choose Love, Hate And Other Filters right away.

Have you read Love, Hate And Other Filters? What do you think about it?  Have you read any other book with Indian or Muslim leads and you liked them better? Let us discuss, I love some books with better representations, especially #ownvoices. 

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22 responses to “Book review: Love, Hate and Other Filters”

  1. I don’t read seasonally but strangely enough I’ve suddenly been reading more cutesy romances by chance? So I totally feel you on this! It sounds like this was an okay read. I’m glad it does Indian culture well, even though it does it intensely xD But it is a shame about the main character not being too special or even unique…

    • I am on a YA romance spree I guess. I need more book recs and I will visit you for some inspiration right away.

    • There is no right age for books. I love YA too, even though I might have crossed those ‘right ages’ long back too!

  2. I love YA Romance, it allows me to read about a love story without having to worry about my children picking it up.

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