Can’t Wait Wednesday is a feature hosted by Wishful Endings, where we get the chance to talk about upcoming books we’re excited for. It’s inspired by Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Breaking the Spine.
A Very Large Expanse of Sea
by Tahereh Mafi
Published on October 16, 2018
Also by this author: Furthermore, A Very Large Expanse of Sea
It’s 2002, a year after 9/11. It’s an extremely turbulent time politically, but especially so for someone like Shirin, a sixteen-year-old Muslim girl who’s tired of being stereotyped.
Shirin is never surprised by how horrible people can be. She’s tired of the rude stares, the degrading comments—even the physical violence—she endures as a result of her race, her religion, and the hijab she wears every day. So she’s built up protective walls and refuses to let anyone close enough to hurt her. Instead, she drowns her frustrations in music and spends her afternoons break-dancing with her brother.
But then she meets Ocean James. He’s the first person in forever who really seems to want to get to know Shirin. It terrifies her—they seem to come from two irreconcilable worlds—and Shirin has had her guard up for so long that she’s not sure she’ll ever be able to let it down.
Why I’m Waiting: I’m curious to see how Tahereh expresses her personal story in this, her first contemporary.