Read "I Can't Think Straight" by Shamim Sarif available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first download. Tala, a London-based Palestinian. Tala, a London-based Palestinian, is preparing for her elaborate Middle Eastern wedding when she meets Leyla, a young British Indian woman who is dating. Editorial Reviews. Review. '.a brilliantly executed,romantic, sexy and heart- warming Advanced Search · Kindle Store; ›; Kindle eBooks; ›; Literature & Fiction.
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A funny and touching love story of two women, I Can't Think Straight explores the clash between This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. I Can't Think Straight (eBook): Sarif, Shamim: Spirited Christian Tala and shy Muslim Leyla could not be more different from each other, but the attraction is. Click for Special Download Instructions for Ebooks. Her works include the novels and films, I Can't Think Straight, The World Unseen, and Despite the Falling.
And I absolutely liked this book because I liked the film.
These are all not very good reasons for liking the book. I don't care. It's a simple, sweet love story. It's an entirely relatable coming-out story albeit a bit on the fluffy side for many of us.
I googly-eyes, heart-hands lurve it. Mar 03, Kernan rated it really liked it. This was the first ever lesfic that I read and I got it only because I had watched the movie and absolutely loved it. This book is one for the 're-read many times' pile. If read by itself, you may not understand all the intricacies. But the book beautifully complements the movie and covers certain scenes which were left behind in the movie. Some scenes which were missing in the book could be found in the movie.
If I'd been reviewing the two together, I'd give them 15 stars.
But separately, this This was the first ever lesfic that I read and I got it only because I had watched the movie and absolutely loved it. But separately, this would be a 4-star book. It may take two or three readings to appreciate this book on it's own and to find certain nuances.
The romance is well done but what made this book different from most ff romances is the exploration of the cultural aspects of the conflict. It's a topic that is not often discussed by western authors in this genre. Jan 15, Miranda Schingledecker rated it it was amazing.
Absolutely loved this book! I had watched the movie before reading it and I greatly appreciated the extra in depth look into the individual characters.
This was a nice feel good story about love without all the extra unnecessary drama and over-sexed descriptions that usually go with it! The pages flew by! Jul 08, C. Mack rated it it was amazing. I would highly recommend - Addresses some interesting themes of sexuality, religion and culture without getting too deep that it overshadows the overall love story. I've just completed this as an audio book and I was surprised to find I enjoyed it more than when I read it myself.
It was superbly narrated and I thoroughly enjoyed this tge second time round. Dec 13, Jess rated it really liked it Shelves: I actually did not know this was a book for the longest time. I had only heard of the film, which was directed by the author herself. I'm surprised this book is not more popular on lesbian book lists and recommended reads--it is funny, insightful, and a very classic love story. I'm guessing the movie eclipsed the book's popularity.
I chose to read this book at this time because it was the December pick for the Lesbian Book Club , though there hasn't been too much discussion yet. It was very nice t I actually did not know this was a book for the longest time. It was very nice to read a lesbian romance that doesn't revolve around two white, non-religious women. This book is about modern women who are allowed to be independent and make their own decisions, but they still feel bound to the cultural pressures of their close-knit families.
Both characters are London-based, with Tala born from a wealthy Christian-Palestinian family and Leyla from an Jewish-Indian background. There is religious and cultural tension Israel vs. Palestine disagreements among Tala's father and modern fiance, her mother Reema's observation that Leyla's skin color is the same as their servants' , but it doesn't dominate the romantic narrative.
Tala and Leyla disagree and argue about politics and religion, but in the end, their love transcends it, as all love stories should.
It is just as much a family drama as it is a romance, and it brings about that poignant feeling of being alone in a crowded room--Tala's brother-in-law is the only one besides her little sister who reaches out to her after she comes out, which immediately worries her and makes her think he has ulterior motives.
She has a tight family, but not necessarily a loving one, which is heartbreaking. There are some fantastic running jokes in this book, such as Reema's maid, Rani, spitting into her madam's drinks in an attempt to spite her, but then Reema never gets around to drinking the tainted beverages. It is definitely funny, but it does mean something--when Reema finally gets around to distractedly drinking her maid's spit-ridden tea, she's also finally and unknowingly swallowing the bitter pill of her daughter's sexuality that she's been avoiding for so many years.
There's also some great lesbian humor Leyla's sister to her ex-fiance on Leyla's coming-out: I'm fond of Reema's characterization, but all characters are rich and well-written. I enjoy Lamia as well, Tala's younger sister who sees her own dull, traditional marriage and adherence to social mores as a victory against her confused older sister and rebellious older sister. She may be secure and married, but she's struggling just as much as Tala--she's training herself to feel and think a certain way, too.
The character descriptions are brief and telling enough to come right from Jane Austen " it was only when [Reema] began talking at length that most people realized her limitation ," " 'Have some papaya,' Reema advised as she lit a cigarette, 'it's anti-cancer. Leyla is a treat for any writer--her struggle to maintain a balance between reality and her preferred fiction is completely understandable.
Why should she not prefer it? These women are struggling with not only their sexualities but with all the confusions involved in maintaining a rich inner life against the traditional desires of family. The only thing I found lacking in this lovely novel is the actual romance. I believe it, and I love both the characters, but their romantic encounters dulled in comparison to the excellent side characters and singular conflicts of Tala and Leyla. I'm a fan of Sarif's writing, and I will definitely seek out her other works as well as the film adaptations of her books.
I hope we see much more of her in the future of lesbian lit. View 2 comments. I was really trying to like this because so many people recommended it to me.
Unfortunately it lost my interest in the first chapter and didn't get it back throughout the book. I loved most of the characters and I especially enjoyed Tala, as well as felt sorry for her.
I didn't feel that Leyla was as developed, but I still liked her! Their sisters Zina and Yasmin were super enjoyable as well Lamia I really liked that we got to know their families, because it added depth to the story. I also liked how the book had some di 4. I do wish we'd gotten more on the religion aspect wrt Tala and Leyla, as they don't discuss it again after their first meeting.
Overall, very enjoyable, quick read! There were also some amusing lines in the book that I appreciated. Leyla looked at him, tears in her eyes. About Tala. This was promising. Could he allow a smile? What a waste of potential. I was looking forward to this book, which seemed so well loved and hit so many of my wish list items for lesbian romance most notably, diversity , but honestly even if I hadn't had high hopes for this book it still would have disappointed.
The writing. My god, the writing. I will give it to Sarif: I had a very well rounded sense of the setting, right down to the minute details of the pattern on the china and the irrelevant backstory of how the main character's chain-sm What a waste of potential.
I had a very well rounded sense of the setting, right down to the minute details of the pattern on the china and the irrelevant backstory of how the main character's chain-smoking mother came into possession of the piece set from her dear frugal lithe auntie who never would have approved of the way beautiful Tala let her slightly-too-small shoe dangle off her immaculately pedicured foot when she crossed her enviable legs shyly.
Then Leyla woke dreamily and exited the comfort of her room to quietly tiptoe down the stairs for breakfast, fastidiously avoiding the lone errant squeaking floorboard she had always avoided ever since she was a precocious adorable lean small child of 8 when she learned with eruditic certainty that her mother found the raucous noise irredeemable.
You might think it's a joke, but the book had a ridiculous amount of adjectives and adverbs, and the scene transitions were all like this.
New scenes and changes in point of view are not separated by a double space, just a new paragraph. It threw me every single time, and the point of view switches five times in a chapter without notice. Really amateur stuff, like maybe the editor gave up. Honestly, what story, what characters. I can't even muster a question mark. The book spent so much time on how overbearing and useless both characters' mothers are, the backstory of one of the sisters who disappears from the narrative about halfway through the book, how kind and progressive the main characters' prospective male partners are, etc, that you barely get to see anything develop between the two leads.
The book even ends with a scene of Tala's mom and Hani the ex-partner, and the last line is that Hani smiles. Like, who? Why would I care? Can I tell you something about Tala? And what about Leyla? Leyla is an emerging writer, of course, so famous, the best, the most famous, her writing is just taking off and so many people want to meet her.
What else, what else She's really into Tala? And they really like each other because they get along. Boy do they get along those two, yup. And how does their relationship progress from that one time one of them went down on the other at the beginning of their friendship which started maybe a month ago?
Abrupt scene change to Tala's mom and Hani having a chat. The end!
My main nitpicky issue seems to be one of the most celebrated moments in the story by fans of the book and the movie which I have not seen: This whole spit sub-plot is a story people with servants tell themselves as part of a mythology where they abdicate their role in oppressing and exploiting the poor by pretending the poor have an equal amount of power in their relationship and can actually score daily victories over their oppressors when they don't like them.
In reality, Rani is probably paid little, her children will never be able to move up in the world, and if she was caught spitting in her masters' food she would not be able to find similar work in the family's high society circle and her own family would struggle to survive. The mom thing. Aren't moms the worst???? The dads in this story are so laid back and have no problem with their daughters' gayness. The moms are backwards as heck! Don't get me wrong--I love that a Muslim man can be shown to be supportive of his gay daughter, and that the two main Middle Eastern men seem to think it's no big deal either.
That was good! But both moms being overbearing ignorant old ladies was a bit tired. Everyone in this book seems to be born pro-gay or anti-gay and the anti-gay ones aren't given any room to get over it. Again, it comes down to nothing being properly developed in this trite little tale.
It's possible to be able to stand reading this book, if you don't care at all about form or a well told story not to judge--many people don't give a lick about style and are happy to go along for a ramble if it's got lesbians in it.
I'm glad they have so many options for entertainment in this world while I languish, increasingly bitter, as the world fails to live up to my standards. Maybe a queer Muslim teen will read this and fall in love with it, then learn it's been made into a movie, and then she'll return to the book in her mids and think, "Omg I used to settle for this type of thing. I could totally write something better than this. That is the substantial power this book has, so I don't want to write it off completely.
I'm just impatient for the better stories this thing might inspire.
The best narration I have ever read. The author has beautifully captured the unexplainable emotions as words - I would suggest one to refer to this book when in a spell bound state to use the lines One of the best reads in my life! Mar 13, Nico rated it it was amazing Shelves: I nearly always read the book before watching the movie because Hollywood tends to ruin everything. I guess that's just one of the downfalls of a book not being the library and being very, very, VERY cheap.
I dislike spending money But I'm trying to think of any I've actually both read and watched and not felt pulled to like one or the other more or less. The only one that can be put on this list for me would be I Can't Think Straight. I read the whole book knowing what was going to happen, which is very unusual for me, and on the rare occasion that it does happen, I usually just end up getting pissed off at things that weren't put into the movie, or things that were changed blah blah blah.
But this one was so perfect for one simple reason. The author was the director. It also helps that the executive producer was said director's wife. Therefore, everything flowed seamlessly. A lot of the dialogue was literally copy pasted from the book, which suited me perfectly fine. This is one of those books where I can set up the movie and go through them both at the same time.
It's really quite brilliant. This was for a few reasons. One, I paid for the book, which I do not do often. Website guidelines Verso ebooks You can buy ebooks directly from this website, and whenever possible we will also offer ebooks bundled with any print books that you buy from us. Once you buy an ebook, you can download it as either an epub file for every reader or device except the Kindle or as a mobi file for the Kindle.
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