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July 2024 Book of the Month

Category: Library, Monthly Book Reviews

Four Eids and a Funeral – Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé & Adiba Jaigirdar

Four Eids and a Funeral is a gentle rom-com written collaboratively by two of the best new YA writers of the moment, who also happen to be friends.  You might have read Ace of Spades or previous Book of the Month, Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating. 

We are told at the start of the book “let’s get one thing straight – this is a love story” and with very little tension the reader is in no doubt that a happy ending is on the cards.  Said has moved away from his community to attend a boarding school.  He returns home one Summer to attend the funeral of his favourite hometown librarian and has to face Tiwa, his ex-best friend.  He also has to figure out how he is going to tell his parents that he wants to be an artist and not a doctor.  Tiwa has no idea why Said has been ignoring her for all these years and presumes that he has become a snob whilst attending his posh boarding school.  Whatever the reason, she’s determined to ignore him completely.  Said’s favourite librarian has other ideas though and, even beyond the grave, she has engineered a situation where the two of them have to work together.  She has left them joint custody of her cat Ladoo!  Further collaboration is required when the community has to pull together to save their Islamic Centre.  There is no way they can avoid each other.

One of my favourite things about the book is its diversity of Muslim characters.  Said is Bangladeshi American, Tiwa is a Black Nigerian American and Safiyah, Said’s sister and Tiwa’s best friend, starts a relationship with another girl from the Mosque. 

This is a heartwarming story of love, friendship and community.  It lightly touches on serious issues such as Tiwa’s experience of being a Black Muslim and bereavement but it’s really all about the romance. 

A great choice for older readers for their summer holiday read.

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