Review, Tree

BOOK REVIEW: Hana Khan Carries On

Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin
Publication Date: April 13, 2021

This is apparently a “You’ve Got Mail” retelling? Or is inspired by the movie? I don’t know that movie bc I was a toddler when it came out and surprisingly my parents did not prioritize showing me romantic comedies when I was young. Sadly. Anyways. I plan on watching it because apparently it is a classic and I love a rom com. Plus, I loved this book and want to know what it was inspired by.

I enjoyed the author’s last novel Ayesha at Last (inspired by Pride & Prejudice) so I added Hana Khan to my TBR and then sort of forgot about it until my library hold came in and I started it during my lunch break at work thinking it would be solid, but not sure what to expect. But then four chapters in I was HOOKED. See my thoughts on Ayesha at Last in this set of mini reviews.

Anyway. This book follows Hana a 24-year-old South Asian, Muslim woman living in Toronto who wants to get into radio. She started an anonymous podcast where she discusses issues that she faces being a South Asian woman and a child of immigrants and anything else that she feels like. Through this process she befriends one of her listeners and they have the whole anonymous friend (but could we be more) thing going on. She also is balancing an internship, her families struggling restaurant, and trying to not stress about the new restaurant across the street.

I feel like this synopsis is all over the place, but this is a novel about family and what it means to be a child of immigrants. It’s a story about telling stories and finding your voice.


WHAT I LOVED

  • I really liked this whole book so I’m going to do my best trying to break down why I loved it.
    • I am so much better at figuring out why I didn’t love a book rather than why I did love it.
  • I flew through this one. I was hooked within four chapters and read it in basically 2 and a half sittings.
  • This is what New Adult should be.
    • Hana and her friends are figuring out what the rest of their lives will look like.
      • They have career struggles and the realities of romance post college.
      • They also have relationships with their parents who are also going through life changes.
  • I loved Hana’s family
    • Her parents are minor characters but still have their own personalities and impact the story.
    • Her cousin Rashid was hilarious and just so chaotic and I loved him on page.
    • Her aunt’s story arc was powerful and I loved that she was able to tell her story to Hana in a meaningful way.
  • The romance! I honestly don’t think this book should be billed as a “rom-com” as it is more of a familial/finding yourself story, but the romance is super cute and the novel is funny. But, I personally would not call this a rom com.
  • These characters are flawed
    • I love when characters make mistakes and then have to face their own actions.
    • Hana does something that I hated and was annoyed about, but she has to come to term with her actions and then has to apologize.
  • THE TAYLOR SWFIT MENTIONS
    • Complete with a performance of Shake it Off
  • The neighborhood and the discussions on the impact of community
  • The storyline with Thomas was great. He is the worst, but I liked how this plot worked out
  • Hana is a storyteller and I loved being in her head and seeing how she sees the world.
    • Her dad being so supportive of her was the best.
  • This novel is able to cover a lot of plots and do it well. I love rom coms, but this story is more powerful having all of the different plot lines and Hana’s relationships with her family and friends are just as important.
  • I loved the conversations on culture and what it means to be a child of immigrants.
  • This novel discusses serious issues, but is still humorous and fun. It just feels real. Hana faces racism and sexism and has to grow, but there are still fun and witty moments.
    • I like when novels can balance both.
  • This cover though!! I love that Hana has a mic how her hijab is outlined with a rainbow. Stunning. The UK cover has her with a leopard print hijab which is also amazing!! (Hana loves leopard print and her aunt is like pls stop)

WHAT I DID NOT LOVE

  • I wish the sister was on page more as we don’t get to know her that well.
  • I felt there were some areas that could have been explored a bit more, but

*also please note that I am not Muslim or South Asian and if I inaccurately portrayed anything related to Hana’s identity or culture please let me know and I with make edits accordingly*

5/5 stars 

I highly recommend this one if you like stories about identity, community, culture, and family.

xoxo, Tree

10 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW: Hana Khan Carries On”

    1. thank you!!

      the sister had an interesting back story but rarely interacted with Hana and I just wanted a few more sister moments!!

      and maybe that was my annoyance with it too! I’m the eldest sister too 😂

      xoxo, tree

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I read Ayesha at Last a few months back and LOVED it! So I picked up Hana Khan Carries On This month and I really enjoyed it as well! It’s definitely a retelling of You’ve Got Mail, but it also was so much more! I agree with every single one of your points. This book was fabulous and I really want more people to be reading it!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s