Samira Ahmed

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Samira Ahmed

Goodreads Author

Bombay, India



Member Since
February 2016

SAMIRA AHMED was born in Bombay, India, and grew up in Batavia, Illinois, in a house that smelled like fried onions, spices, and potpourri. She currently resides in the Midwest. She’s lived in Vermont, New York City, and Kauai, where she spent a year searching for the perfect mango.

A graduate of the University of Chicago, she taught high school English for seven years, worked to create over 70 small high schools in New York City, and fought to secure billions of additional dollars to fairly fund public schools throughout New York State. She’s appeared in the New York Times, New York Daily News, Fox News, NBC, NY1, NPR, and on BBC Radio. Her creative non-fiction and poetry has appeared in Jaggery Lit, Entropy, the Fem, and Claudius Speaks.


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Samira Ahmed D.J. Sorry it took forever to get to this question! But I finally have an answer! Yes, I'll be at Barnes & Noble at The Grove on January 18 7 p.m. htt…moreD.J. Sorry it took forever to get to this question! But I finally have an answer! Yes, I'll be at Barnes & Noble at The Grove on January 18 7 p.m.
Samira Ahmed Hey Dan! Thanks so much for finding me here and asking that question. The book isn't out until January 16th, 2018. You can definitely pre-order from t…moreHey Dan! Thanks so much for finding me here and asking that question. The book isn't out until January 16th, 2018. You can definitely pre-order from the usual suspects--IndieBound, Amazon, Barnes and Noble. However, currently there are some ARCs (advanced reader copies--unedited) floating around that are mainly supposed to be for librarians, book bloggers, reviewers, etc. I'm hoping I'll be doing a few events in and around Chicago once the book is officially launched--if you're still in the area! If not, once the book is out, contact me and I can send you signed bookplate! Hope all is well with you!(less)
Average rating: 3.86 · 24,439 ratings · 5,753 reviews · 9 distinct worksSimilar authors

3.91 avg rating — 11,555 ratings — published 2019 — 19 editions
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Love, Hate & Other Filters

3.80 avg rating — 10,936 ratings — published 2018 — 15 editions
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Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know

3.90 avg rating — 842 ratings — published 2020 — 8 editions
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Swimming Lessons

it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 1 rating — published 2020
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Amor, odio y otros filtros

0.00 avg rating — 0 ratings
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Vampires Never Get Old: Tal...

3.71 avg rating — 453 ratings — published 2020 — 3 editions
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Color Outside the Lines

3.79 avg rating — 399 ratings — published 2019 — 4 editions
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Take the Mic: Fictional Sto...

4.28 avg rating — 305 ratings — published 2019 — 6 editions
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A Universe of Wishes: A We ...

3.90 avg rating — 21 ratings — expected publication 2020 — 3 editions
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More books by Samira Ahmed…

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The Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty
Samira Ahmed voted for Red at the Bone as Best Fiction in the Semifinal Round of the 2019 Goodreads Choice Awards.
Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson
Samira Ahmed finished reading
The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
The Sun Is Also a Star
by Nicola Yoon (Goodreads Author)
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Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron
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Internment by Samira Ahmed
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Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst
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The Love & Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan
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Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed
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Septimania by Jonathan Levi
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Samira Ahmed answered D.J. Adamson's question: Samira Ahmed
D.J. Sorry it took forever to get to this question! But I finally have an answer! Yes, I'll be at Barnes & Noble at The Grove on January 18 7 p.m.
More of Samira's books…
“The scariest monsters are the ones who seem the most like you.”
Samira Ahmed, Internment

“These terrorists are the antithesis of Islam. They’re not Muslim. Violence has no place in religion, and the terrorists are responsible for their own crimes, not the religion and not us.”
Samira Ahmed, Love, Hate & Other Filters

“A compass doesn’t tell you where you are, and it doesn’t tell you where you have to go. It can only point you in a direction. It’s up to you to always find your true north.”
Samira Ahmed, Internment


Vote for the August YA Poll, celebrating minority authors!

Spin the Dawn (The Blood of Stars, #1) by Elizabeth Lim by Elizabeth Lim

Project Runway meets Mulan in this sweeping YA fantasy about a young girl who poses as a boy to compete for the role of imperial tailor and embarks on an impossible journey to sew three magic dresses, from the sun, the moon, and the stars.

Maia Tamarin dreams of becoming the greatest tailor in the land, but as a girl, the best she can hope for is to marry well. When a royal messenger summons her ailing father, once a tailor of renown, to court, Maia poses as a boy and takes his place. She knows her life is forfeit if her secret is discovered, but she'll take that risk to achieve her dream and save her family from ruin. There's just one catch: Maia is one of twelve tailors vying for the job.

Backstabbing and lies run rampant as the tailors compete in challenges to prove their artistry and skill. Maia's task is further complicated when she draws the attention of the court magician, Edan, whose piercing eyes seem to see straight through her disguise.

And nothing could have prepared her for the final challenge: to sew three magic gowns for the emperor's reluctant bride-to-be, from the laughter of the sun, the tears of the moon, and the blood of stars. With this impossible task before her, she embarks on a journey to the far reaches of the kingdom, seeking the sun, the moon, and the stars, and finding more than she ever could have imagined.

Steeped in Chinese culture, sizzling with forbidden romance, and shimmering with magic, this young adult fantasy is pitch-perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas or Renée Ahdieh.
  18 votes, 22.0%

Internment by Samira Ahmed by Samira Ahmed

Rebellions are built on hope.

Set in a horrifying near-future United States, seventeen-year-old Layla Amin and her parents are forced into an internment camp for Muslim American citizens.

With the help of newly made friends also trapped within the internment camp, her boyfriend on the outside, and an unexpected alliance, Layla begins a journey to fight for freedom, leading a revolution against the internment camp's Director and his guards.

Heart-racing and emotional, Internment challenges readers to fight complicit silence that exists in our society today.
  14 votes, 17.1%

Dread Nation (Dread Nation, #1) by Justina Ireland by Justina Ireland

Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg and Chancellorsville—derailing the War Between the States and changing America forever. In this new nation, safety for all depends on the work of a few, and laws like the Native and Negro Reeducation Act require certain children attend combat schools to learn to put down the dead. But there are also opportunities—and Jane is studying to become an Attendant, trained in both weaponry and etiquette to protect the well-to-do. It’s a chance for a better life for Negro girls like Jane. After all, not even being the daughter of a wealthy white Southern woman could save her from society’s expectations.

But that’s not a life Jane wants. Almost finished with her education at Miss Preston’s School of Combat in Baltimore, Jane is set on returning to her Kentucky home and doesn’t pay much mind to the politics of the eastern cities, with their talk of returning America to the glory of its days before the dead rose. But when families around Baltimore County begin to go missing, Jane is caught in the middle of a conspiracy, one that finds her in a desperate fight for her life against some powerful enemies. And the restless dead, it would seem, are the least of her problems
  12 votes, 14.6%

Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson by Jacqueline Woodson

Running into a long-ago friend sets memories from the 1970s in motion for August, transporting her to a time and a place where friendship was everything—until it wasn’t. For August and her girls, sharing confidences as they ambled through neighborhood streets, Brooklyn was a place where they believed that they were beautiful, talented, brilliant—a part of a future that belonged to them.

But beneath the hopeful veneer, there was another Brooklyn, a dangerous place where grown men reached for innocent girls in dark hallways, where ghosts haunted the night, where mothers disappeared. A world where madness was just a sunset away and fathers found hope in religion.
  8 votes, 9.8%

A Song of Wraiths and Ruin (A Song of Wraiths and Ruin, #1) by Roseanne A. Brown by Roseanne A. Brown

The first in an fantasy duology inspired by West African folklore in which a grieving crown princess and a desperate refugee find themselves on a collision course to murder each other despite their growing attraction.

For Malik, the Solstasia festival is a chance to escape his war-stricken home and start a new life with his sisters in the prosperous desert city of Ziran. But when a vengeful spirit abducts Malik’s younger sister, Nadia, as payment into the city, Malik strikes a fatal deal—kill Karina, Crown Princess of Ziran, for Nadia’s freedom.

But Karina has deadly aspirations of her own. Her mother, the Sultana, has been assassinated; her court threatens mutiny; and Solstasia looms like a knife over her neck. Grief-stricken, Karina decides to resurrect her mother through ancient magic . . . requiring the beating heart of a king. And she knows just how to obtain one: by offering her hand in marriage to the victor of the Solstasia competition.

When Malik rigs his way into the contest, they are set on a course to destroy each other. But as attraction flares between them and ancient evils stir, will they be able to see their tasks to the death?
  8 votes, 9.8%

Forest of Souls (Shamanborn, #1) by Lori M. Lee by Lori M. Lee

Sirscha Ashwyn comes from nothing, but she’s intent on becoming something. After years of training to become the queen’s next royal spy, her plans are derailed when shamans attack and kill her best friend Saengo.

And then Sirscha, somehow, restores Saengo to life.

Unveiled as the first soulguide in living memory, Sirscha is summoned to the domain of the Spider King. For centuries, he has used his influence over the Dead Wood—an ancient forest possessed by souls—to enforce peace between the kingdoms. Now, with the trees growing wild and untamed, only a soulguide can restrain them. As war looms, Sirscha must master her newly awakened abilities before the trees shatter the brittle peace, or worse, claim Saengo, the friend she would die for.
  7 votes, 8.5%

Noughts & Crosses (Noughts & Crosses, #1) by Malorie Blackman by Malorie Blackman

Two young people are forced to make a stand in this thought-provoking look at racism and prejudice in an alternate society.

Sephy is a Cross -- a member of the dark-skinned ruling class. Callum is a Nought -- a “colourless” member of the underclass who were once slaves to the Crosses. The two have been friends since early childhood, but that’s as far as it can go. In their world, Noughts and Crosses simply don’t mix. Against a background of prejudice and distrust, intensely highlighted by violent terrorist activity, a romance builds between Sephy and Callum -- a romance that is to lead both of them into terrible danger. Can they possibly find a way to be together?
  6 votes, 7.3%

We Hunt the Flame (Sands of Arawiya, #1) by Hafsah Faizal by Hafsah Faizal

People lived because she killed.
People died because he lived.

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the king. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways.

Both are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya—but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the king on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds—and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.

Set in a richly detailed world inspired by ancient Arabia, We Hunt the Flame is a gripping debut of discovery, conquering fear, and taking identity into your own hands
  5 votes, 6.1%

A Phoenix First Must Burn by Patrice Caldwell

Sixteen tales by bestselling and award-winning authors that explore the Black experience through fantasy, science fiction, and magic.

Evoking Beyoncé’s Lemonade for a teen audience, these authors who are truly Octavia Butler’s heirs, have woven worlds to create a stunning narrative that centers Black women and gender nonconforming individuals. A Phoenix First Must Burn will take you on a journey from folktales retold to futuristic societies and everything in between. Filled with stories of love and betrayal, strength and resistance, this collection contains an array of complex and true-to-life characters in which you cannot help but see yourself reflected. Witches and scientists, sisters and lovers, priestesses and rebels: the heroines of A Phoenix First Must Burn shine brightly. You will never forget them.

Authors include Elizabeth Acevedo, Amerie, Dhonielle Clayton, Jalissa Corrie, Somaiya Daud, Charlotte Davis, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Justina Ireland, Danny Lore, L.L. McKinney, Danielle Paige, Rebecca Roanhorse, Karen Strong, Ashley Woodfolk, and Ibi Zoboi
  4 votes, 4.9%


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