Read: Interview with Blue Willow Bookshop for Houston TeenBookCon

Abdi attended the 2018 TeenBookCon in Houston. Check out an interview he did with Blue Willow Bookshop in anticipation of the event. Read the full interview here. An excerpt:

We’ve read that one of your goals for your books is to tell stories of gay characters in immigrant communities. Can you tell us about why that’s important to you and how you plan to continue representing those characters?

When I realized I was gay, there were no stories about gay Iranians out there. It made me feel like I didn’t exist, or like the world didn’t want me to exist. So telling these stories feels like writing myself into existence, and giving the teenage me the stories he needed. Hopefully, the stories also give other queer people from immigrant communities some narratives to look to if they want to see themselves. The queer immigrant experience is often very different from the queer

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Read: Q and A with Abdi for Ontario Teen Book Fest

Abdi attended Ontario Teen Book Fest 2018. To read the Q and A he did for the festival, click here. Important questions were asked and answered, like: RNSL: Cake or Pie? And why? AN: Which one comes with ice cream? Because I’ll take that one, eat the ice cream, and give the cake or pie to someone else. But if ice cream isn’t happening, then pie. Unless it’s ice cream cake, obviously.

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Read: HCPL TeenScene gives THE AUTHENTICS five stars

Read HCPL TeenScene's review here, or below: Daria is an Iranian American girl who is proud of who she is. Her former friend Heidi who is in a clique called the “Nose Jobs,” while Daria’s friends are called the Authentics. The Authentics included her, Kurt, Caroline, and Joy. One day in their English class, Mr. Farrell assigns a project about what brought them to this point in their life. Daria decides to draw up a little family tree, including her brother Amir and his husband Andrew, and her parents Sheila and Baba. She then decides that she should do a DNA test on herself. She finds out shocking news that will test her family and the Authentics. She is on the road of self-discovery and secrets. I like how her friends and family were tested throughout the story. You also get to learn about her culture at the same time. The

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Read: Teen Readers Council gives THE AUTHENTICS a rave review

Check out the Teen Readers Council review here, or read below: THE AUTHENTICS by Abdi Nazemian is a powerful story of identity, self-discovery and friendship. Protagonist Daria Esfandyar and her three best friends call themselves “the Authentics” because, unlike everyone else in their Beverly Hills high school, they know who they are and don’t try to hide it. Daria, for one, is incredibly proud of her Iranian American heritage. But after being assigned a genealogy project at school, Daria realizes that she may not be as authentic as she once thought. As she begins to discover who she really is, Daria is forced to question everything she once thought was true about her family, her friends, and herself. I loved reading about the interactions between Daria and her friends as she navigates through this tumultuous time in her life. Her friends are all compassionate and supportive, but also deeply flawed,

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