Review: Love from A to Z by S. K. Ali

Love from A to Z is both a marvel and an oddity in the best ways possible. It’s unapologetic in every way and it’s beautiful.

Love from A to Z Covermarvel: something you find amazing. Even ordinary-amazing. Like potatoes—because they make French fries happen. Like the perfect fries Adam and his mom used to make together.

An oddity: whatever gives you pause. Like the fact that there are hateful people in the world. Like Zayneb’s teacher, who won’t stop reminding the class how “bad” Muslims are.

But Zayneb, the only Muslim in class, isn’t bad. She’s angry.

When she gets suspended for confronting her teacher, and he begins investigating her activist friends, Zayneb heads to her aunt’s house in Doha, Qatar, for an early start to spring break.

Fueled by the guilt of getting her friends in trouble, she resolves to try out a newer, “nicer” version of herself in a place where no one knows her.

Then her path crosses with Adam’s.

Since he got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in November, Adam’s stopped going to classes, intent, instead, on perfecting the making of things. Intent on keeping the memory of his mom alive for his little sister.

Adam’s also intent on keeping his diagnosis a secret from his grieving father.

Alone, Adam and Zayneb are playing roles for others, keeping their real thoughts locked away in their journals.

Until a marvel and an oddity occurs…

Marvel: Adam and Zayneb meeting.

Oddity: Adam and Zayneb meeting. Goodreads

I received an eARC of Love from A to Z from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Love from A to Z was my first book from S. K. Ali, but it certainly won’t be my last. This book deals with so much, from Islamophobia to disability to self care, and it does it all beautifully.

It does need some trigger warnings for Islamophobia, racist micro-aggressions, cultural appropriation, chronic illness, talk of family death by illness, talk of family death in an accident, mentions of rape, discussion of war and war victims.

The relationships in Love from A to Z were amazing. I loved how different every single one of the characters were from each other, from their relationships to Islam to their feelings on social justice to their food preferences. The way that Adam’s DHS friend group works, with people who get along well with others but not with Adam or Zayneb, was incredibly realistic and I loved that it wasn’t a big deal, really. We got to see Zayneb get a little bit jealous of her friends at home when they start making new friends as well, and it was dealt with for the most part.

The way that the romance was handled, with their faith as a huge part of it, was beautiful. I loved that they didn’t even touch until the epilogue. It felt perfect for their relationship.

It’s a beautiful story that needs to be read. You can pick up a copy for yourself from Indiebound, The Book Depository or Amazon through our affiliate links.


Title: Love from A to Z

Author: S. K. Ali

Publisher: Salaam Reads

Length: 384 Pages

Release Date: April 30, 2019

Rating: Highly Recommended

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Fiction

Representation: Chinese Canadian Muslim main character, Pakistani American Muslim main character, hijabi main character, main character with multiple sclerosis


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