What if you met the boy of your dreams but loving him was forbidden?
Aisha Rashid has always felt invisible, so no one is more surprised than her when Darren, the hot new boy in school, takes an interest. But Aisha is a devout Muslim and Darren is firmly off limits. Will she follow her heart even if it means losing her own identity? If only there was a way to keep the boy and her faith. Maybe there is… all it takes is ten steps…
Ahh, Ten Steps To Us, what a perfect teen romance!
It is perfect in that we see uncertainty, love, lust, rivalry, and angst, come together in just the right blend to be fully believable and relatable, whilst keeping us on the edge of our seats, and hearts in our mouths, wondering what the outcome will be for Aisha and Darren!
I found the writing to flow wonderfully, it was effortless to read which is so enjoyable, I hate getting distracted trying to follow complex plots or remember who’s who when I’m reading.
I liked Aisha, she was somewhat naive initially and unsure of herself around others but this was entirely plausible. I was dubious of Darren’s intentions from the start, if I’m honest I thought he was a bit of a creep or had some hidden motive for pursuing Aisha. (Spoiler Alert) This has really made me stop and think about my interpretations of things, Darren was a nice guy… so why did I not think that?! Why did I presume he was ‘playing’ Aisha? It has been a long time since a book has made me question my own thoughts in this way!
The difference with this book is the religious and cultural aspect, of course, there are some other teen books out there that look at these sorts of topics, but I found that Ten Steps To Us really makes you have to think about the choices Aisha makes alongside her beliefs, family, and future. I loved that Aisha was allowed to question things, take risks, and make mistakes, it showed her growth, becoming an increasingly headstrong and independent young woman whilst still maintaining her beliefs and religion with pride.
The book contains such a brilliant message of being true to yourself and not trying to change others to fit in with the ‘ideal’, or expectations that you or those around you may hold. A great lesson in respect, maturity, and choice.
Thank you to Literally PR for inviting me to take part in the tour.
Attiya is a mother of three and works as a GP in East London. She has been part of critique groups for around five years and holds an MA in Modern Literature from Birkbeck, where she graduated with merits.
She was selected to be part of the David Higham’s Open day for underrepresented writers, and is also on the longlist for Undiscovered Voices 2020.
Ten Steps To Us is Attiya’s debut book.
Title: Ten Steps To Us
Author: Attiya Khan
Genre: YA, Teen Romance, Coming Of Age, Fiction
Publisher: Hashtag Press
Publication date: Sept 9 2021
Availability: Paperback, eBook, International distribution
ISBN: (paperback) 978-1-913835-10-1 (ebook) 978-1-913835-11-8
Page count: 256