Read: Booklist’s Starred Review of THE AUTHENTICS

Booklist has written a starred review of THE AUTHENTICS. Read below, or check it out by clicking here:

Daria despises the pretenses of the so-called Beverly Hills Persian princesses, which include nose jobs, lavish sweet sixteen parties, and ignoring the current state of Iran. That’s why Daria and her friends call themselves the “Authentics.” Daria is proud to own her Iranian heritage, just as the other Authentics embrace their own unique identities. Things begin to unravel when Daria receives the results from a DNA kit that reveal she is actually half Middle Eastern and half Mexican. Dismayed, Daria secretly begins an investigation to find her birth parents. In the sequence of surprises along the way, Daria continually reevaluates the meaning of identity and authenticity. Author Nazemian weaves a network of diverse supporting characters that further explore these themes, such as Daria’s older brother and his Chinese American husband, who are expecting their first child, and Daria’s birth mother’s attractive stepson. Nazemian keeps it all real by focusing on the strength of emotional bonds that transcend all external differences. Daria’s mother, for example, could easily be a Persian princess stereotype, but she is ecstatic about her gay son and the arrival of her first grandchild. As with the novels of Benjamin Alire Sáenz or Randa Abdel-Fattah, Daria’s thought-provoking journey will resonate with teen readers of all backgrounds. – Diane Colson

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