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Mariam Sharma Hits the Road

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  121 Ratings  ·  50 Reviews
The summer after her freshman year in college, Mariam is looking forward to working and hanging out with her best friends: irrepressible and beautiful Ghazala and religious but closeted Umar. But when a scandalous photo of Ghaz appears on a billboard in Times Square, Mariam and Umar come up with a plan to rescue her from her furious parents. And what better escape than New ...more
ebook, 320 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by HarperTeen
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Cait • A Page with a View
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is such a beautiful story on so many levels. It's a fun summer contemporary but the complex, lovable characters are what really made it stand out for me.

Mariam goes on a road trip to New Orleans with her 2 friends to escape the scandal of one of them in an American Apparel-type underwear billboard in Times Square. The diverse life experiences of the 3 college students and their honest discussions about faith, family, racism, and trying to find your place in a screwed up world were so incre
Jun 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
I thought Sheba Karim would have to work really hard for me to dislike this book more than I disliked That Thing We Call a Heart but wow! She really put in her 110%!

I am not going to declare to the world every label I ascribe to, but I fall in to many of the 'categories' this book tries to place people in - and 'Muslim' is one of them. And as one, THIS BOOK IS NOT POSITIVE MUSLIM REPRESENTATION!

I would not say this book is not realistic or that the desi/Muslim community is "not like this".
Jen Ryland
Who can resist a road trip book (not me!)

This is a story about a group of Pakistani-American teens who hit the road, headed from New Jersey to New Orleans. One is hiding from the fallout after she's featured on a Times Square billboard, one is looking for her absentee father, and one is deciding when and whether to come out. Their friendship was great and their adventures were both touching and hilarious.

Read more of my reviews on! Check out my Bookstagram! Or check out my Jen In T
♕ mali
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
i was very excited for this but it was underwhelming and uncomfortable at some parts especially when it came to omar's sexuality...
The writing leaves something to be desired, as do some of the choices made in the story...but that is easy to let go of when you consider this is a YA book about three brown teens on a road trip from New Jersey to New Orleans. All three are seeking some kind of closure in their lives and find it on the road. They also dig into racism, both that directed toward them and that they direct outward. The exploration of sexuality is more shallow than I'd like to have seen, but given this is really Mari ...more
Haadiya // Hiatus
this doesnt sound good but hello its pakistani and im here
Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight

I assumed I would love this one, based on the fact that I will never, ever turn down reading a road trip book. Especially when best friends come together to help one of their other friends, so this one sold me from the synopsis. Unfortunately, it didn't end up being as epic as I'd hoped. But alas, there were some definite high points, so let's start with those!

The Good:

It deals with a
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
“You’re thinking about it the wrong way. Maybe you don’t have to fit in with them, maybe you have to make space for yourself.”

I just wanted to love this so much and ended up not really liking it much and I feel kinda sad about it. Miriam Sharma Hits the Road follows Miriam and her two closest friends, Umar and Ghaz, as they roadtrip to New Orleans and discover more about themselves in the process.

Things I Liked
I really loved the focus on friendship in the story, and it’s what drew me to th
I really enjoyed this friendship/roadtrip story. Underage drinking, pot brownies, and descriptions of sex, so I’d say meant for HS readers.
Abeer Hoque
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-recommend
Longer review to come, but I loved this smart, political, dramatic, and sweet story of three Muslim American teens on a road trip from New York to New Orleans.
Jun 26, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
A fun road-trip story that also includes some opportunities to discuss heavier things like emotional trauma, bias/prejudice, and identity. There were a few cringey moments in the book (mostly jabs that are intended as humor), but overall, I really enjoyed the story of Mariam and her two friends, Ghaz and Umar. I appreciate how well the teens respect each other's needs - sometimes they give each other space, but other times, they force each other to deal with emotional issues and hold each other' ...more
This is pretty great on all fronts. Three Pakistani-American teens face challenges in their communities and the larger world including religion, cultural expectations, what it means to be brown and Muslim in the United States, and just plain becoming an adult and what it feels like to be separating from your parents and community as you grow up. Well rounded characters, authentic dialog that strays into edification but in a good way, a realistic portrayal of the range of adults in these kids' li ...more
Such a quick read as well as hella readable since I read it in like less than 12 hours

Mariam Sharma Hits the Road tackles a lot of important topics from Islamophobia to queer Muslims (one of three main characters being one) to different types of Muslims and more all in a road trip setting! I always love those. Other plus points are the friendship, zero romance, hilarious and heartwarming moments and yet some of the things felt too forced and not executed all that well. So I need to think about m
Mar 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, lgbtq

I was so excited for this book, and I wish I enjoyed it more... it wasn't that I disliked it, necessarily, than just kind of tired at some parts. A lot of the dialogue and thought between the main characters just kind of felt like the rants we have in our head and/or articles we read about cultural politics today; comparisons of privilege, who's better off than the other, here's all the ways we're discriminated against for being gay or confident in ourselves... and these are all good things to t

Raven Andrus
Sep 29, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5. Really sweet book that deals with serious issues in a great way that's easily accessible. Love the diversity and the road trip aspect. So excited for more people to read this!!
Cheyenne Teska
Mariam, Umar, and Ghaz are three teens who have been emotionally damaged and scarred by their parents in very different ways. Each of them, finding friendship and loyalty in each other, decide to go on a spontaneous road trip. Along the way- like any good road trip story- the characters find themselves and come to realize that what they've got and who they are is better than what they've been chasing their entire lives.

Mariam's father abandoned her family when she was only two years old. She's a
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
This took me a while to get to (not through any fault of the book, but it's just my own laziness) but I really enjoyed it. It's a fast-paced read that focuses on three friends who all road trip to New Orleans together, each with a different thing to work through. It was both funny at times but also very serious. Mariam Sharma Hits the Road definitely has a little bit of something for everyone.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I think this was a well-written book and I enjoyed it a lot. My only issue is that it is about prejudice, in this case against brown people, and yet I feel the characters in this book were very prejudiced against the American South in general. Sheba Karim does say that EVERYONE is prejudiced to a degree. Yet I felt this in particular was not in keeping with the theme of the book.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
really enjoyed this audiobook. it was a lot of fun but I hoped for the ending to not be so "abrupt"
Laura (bbliophile)
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018-releases
I have quite a lot of complicated feelings towards this book.
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
More like 3.5 from me

(I want to preface this by saying I am not represented in this book and so I cannot speak to the accuracy of the representation here. I realize I don't say this every review where it's the case and I'm trying to be better about it. While I can read things like Chinese American adoption and some other smaller intersectionalities, that's also a myriad of different experiences there as well. Just saying).

Anyway so I want to list what I really liked about this book which were th
Samantha Buyungo
Mar 30, 2018 rated it liked it
A fairly entertaining novel about adventure, surprises, and finding yourself. I loved how this book addressed current issues like Islamophobia and sexuality in the context of religion, however, I felt that while the message was important, the plot was a little lacking. I felt that throughout the book, partying and drinking was the sole focus and that the deeper messages came near the end of the novel.
I received an ARC of this book from HarperCollins via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Mariam Sharma Hits the Road is not your typical romance road trip where you travel the world with your loved one. It's not even a romance book at all. The story focuses on three best friends in their teens - Mariam, Ghaz and Umar who all have their own problems and go on a road trip which takes place most of the book. The road trip. The reason I got so interested in this book. I was so excited for th
Brooke Banks
I don't quite know what to say or how to rate this one. I hooked me right away and kept me going, even with some bumps and frustrations along the way. Unique setup & character drama, never seen before in YA, esp. road trips. But some problematic shit, with Umar being stereotypical, making fatphobic comments, and there's no really GOOD muslim characters. I did like the conversation around Ghaz's billboard picture though and thought the discussion around Muslim beliefs and the queer community ...more
Jun 24, 2018 rated it liked it
For some reason I didn’t get as strong of a road trip vibe as I would’ve liked — more touristy, exploration of identity, a lot of overt discourse on social issues. (Major props for addressing intersectionality, though that exact term is never actually used!) That said, overall it was an enjoyable read with a few key issues.

I don’t like to label things as too PC or SJW-y, but I think this novel is a little too heavy-handed and binary-minded about subjects with multiple shades of nuance: racism,
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Well, that was a bit problematic! This for sure has elements that I enjoyed, but wow! Some of the things in here are just...hypocritical, offensive, unnecessary.

Everyone in life is problematic, often times without realizing and meaning it. As that is realistic, I'm okay when a character does or says something problematic so long as they grow; or, if they don't, it's for a plot/overall message related reason. The characters in here did not grow. They were incredibly aware of issues relating to p
Leah Moore
Choppy and too many teen philosophical conversations. They discuss life the universe, religion, america, human rights, privilege - they are just so woke, it's painful.
At the same time they admit their racism, they do nothing to change themselves... they think seeing it in themselves is enough.
Also, they eat Sooo much, and every restaurant they go to has awful people who make the trio "scared" with their comments and glances. Like, do we really feel that every mom n pop eatery in the south will
Jun 30, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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My third YA novel, Mariam Sharma Hits the Road,, about three best friends on a road trip through the American South, is out June 2018 from Harper Collins. It's the first YA road trip book featuring South Asian Americans!

My second young adult novel, That Thing We Call a Heart, is out in May 2017 from HarperTeen. It fe
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