From the publisher:
One of Amazon’s Best Romances of the Month!
For fans of “You’ve Got Mail,” a young woman juggles pursuing her dream job in radio while helping her family compete with the new halal restaurant across the street, in this sparkling new rom-com by the author of Ayesha at Last.
Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine, the only halal restaurant in the close-knit Golden Crescent neighborhood of Toronto. 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 her mother’s restaurant.
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 neighborhood 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.
Once I saw the comparison to “You’ve Got Mail,” this became a must read for me. The comparison is apt so I was pretty sure I knew what was going on fairly early in the story, but that in no way lessened its appeal. Plus it revolves around restaurants, always in my wheelhouse, and in addition to a wonderful love story, there is a gentle look at hate crimes and this book makes it personal, always a good thing.
Hana loves radio and found her dream internship with the local NPR station. Set in Toronto, a new to me setting, in an Indian neighborhood called the Golden Crescent, it just adds depth to the story. I loved learning about the culture, the food, and these characters, and we get to know them well.
There are some complications at work that make Hana’s life a little bit stressful. But when she is attacked for her ethnicity, things really take a turn for the worse. What could have been a dark turn, instead the author uses it in a more gentle way which I really appreciated.
Aydin is a wonderful hero, young, good looking, but most of all kind and generous. But his father! Every good story needs a bad guy and while he has a small role, it is a memorable one. The other secondary characters all play their parts in making this an interesting book, but it is the sweet romance at the heart of things that really drew me in.
This was a wonderful read from the author of another fabulous book, Ayesha at Last. Don’t miss it!
5/2021 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch
HANA KHAN CARRIES ON by Uzma Jalaluddin. Sourcebooks Casablanca (January 19, 2021). ISBN: 978-1728226316. 384 pages.