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Rani Patel in Full Effect

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3.70  ·  Rating details ·  652 ratings  ·  177 reviews
Almost seventeen, Rani Patel appears to be a kick-ass Indian girl breaking cultural norms as a hip-hop performer in full effect. But in truth, she's a nerdy flat-chested nobody who lives with her Gujarati immigrant parents on the remote Hawaiian island of Moloka'i, isolated from her high school peers by the unsettling norms of Indian culture where "husband is God." Her par ...more
Hardcover, 315 pages
Published October 11th 2016 by Cinco Puntos Press
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Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn HamiltonBlackhearts by Nicole CastromanThe Girl from Everywhere by Heidi HeiligEver the Hunted by Erin SummerillIvory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh
YA Debuts 2016
256 books — 1,443 voters
On the Come Up by Angie ThomasThe Hate U Give by Angie ThomasThe Sista Hood by E-FierceRani Patel in Full Effect by Sonia PatelLet Me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson
Hip Hop in YA
16 books — 3 voters


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3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  652 ratings  ·  177 reviews


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Tatiana
Jan 29, 2017 marked it as abandoned
Shelves: 2, 2017, starred-2016, ya
I know I won't go back to it, in spite of the unique narrator - a rapping Gujarati Indian girl living in Hawaii. This is a ya novel with great premise and a lot of promise, but which happened to be published in a very unpolished state.
Jessa Franco
Raw and emotionally draining, Rani's story is one of endurance and empowerment. However, the use of 90s slang and Hawaiian/Gujarati words made it hard to immerse myself into the story. Had I known there was a glossary at the end, I may not have had this problem.

If I could change one thing, I would have waited for an audio book. It would be nice to know how to pronounce some of the words and I would love to hear the raps performed. They were powerful on paper, but set to a beat with the passion
...more
Kelly
This book needed some work for a few reasons, primarily in respect to needing one plot point less than what was mixed in, and it needed a better pacing and time structure. It runs long, but then it rushes to a conclusion that's ultimately not as satisfying as it could be. I was left, too, with a lot of questions of believability/world-building with Rani -- why did she have no friends and no female friends in her life at all? We get a quick note on this later on, but it made me ask a lot of quest ...more
Peach
I'm so excited about this, I told my mom about it.

Sometimes, our best consolers are our parents. Yesterday, my mother was sharing pieces of her relationship with me as she does, and I was like: "You know what? That reminds me of Rani Patel in Full Effect." I had her so captivated, she asked when it was expected to release. I basically spoiled the book for her. Sorry, Mom.

Rani's father has recently cheated on her mother with a younger woman. In discovering this information, Rani shaves her head
...more
Neeyati
I enjoyed many things about this book and definitely think it's a worthwhile read, but I will say that it was also difficult at times. Content warnings for sexual and emotional abuse.

Sonia Patel (the author) is also a psychiatrist, and her portrayal of abuse is intentional. She includes an author's note at the end detailing why she chose to have her title character make unhealthy choices -- "Incest has tragic consequences on the lives of children and adolescents. Yet in treating these youth or
...more
Morgan
Jun 08, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya, hip-hop
Everyone, this is not a good book. Both in terms of the writing...
-e.g. "Today is Pono's birthday party. I brew up some extra strong masala chai and pace the kitchen. I sip and contemplate the perfect music selections for his gift--an 80's [sic] hip hop tape" (230) and "Six days later it's done. It chronicles the struggles of multiple generations of women in my family. Including my mom. I want it to be perfect for the next 4eva Flowin' production. Omar agreed to give me an honest critique of it
...more
Kim
Aug 02, 2016 rated it liked it
I feel a little ambivalent about this book. The things I like, I really, really like: the mix of Hawaiian and Indian (Gujarati) cultures; the insight into hip-hop and how all the external expressions of strength can become inner strength (fake it 'til you become it); Rani's voice and raps; the characters around her, both positive and negative.

But the things I don't like are hard to get past. Rani's abuse and healing feels shallow, and as the author says in her note, "the fact that Rani was able
...more
Bree Hill
Nov 26, 2016 rated it it was ok
This book had the potential to be really great, but it just didn't work for me. I was SUPER excited when i heard about this book. Strong woman of color who loves rap music and slam poetry..had me from the moment I heard about it!

This story was a focus on the cycle of abuse and for me what didn't work is that all 300 pages of it focused on that cycle! The ended is all of a sudden and BAM in those last 5 or so pages you finally see things looking up and our main girl getting her shit together. But
...more
Samantha Tai
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cathy
I am hesitant to put this down as local-Hawaii-literature, but it does take place on Molokaʻi in the 90s and although I first felt like the geographic markers in the story were sort of like people in Hawaiʻi watching Dog, the Bounty Hunter, I know that even though I would never drive so much on Molokaʻi, one of the high school kids I talked to from Molokaʻi High said his biggest achievement was driving 200 miles in one night. Do you know how many times you have to cruise back and forth to make 2 ...more
Elissa has
I'm having a hard time thinking of a rating... The story is so good, and important, and I loved the Hawaiian-Indian-rap elements. The author, a psychologist who shares a lot of Rani's descriptors (Indian, lives on the same island as Rani, and is a rapper) could have made a really fantastic book... but the clunky writing almost ruined this for me. While a few other reviews have touched on some valid criticisms about character development and Rani's Mary-Sue-ness, mine is that the story structure ...more
Kate
Mar 15, 2017 rated it liked it
It's 1991 and Rani Patel's father is having an affair. It's confirmed and documented and Rani is furious. Not just on her distant mother's behalf but on her own behalf. Her and her Dad have been closer than is right for quite some time now - she feels like a widow and shaves her head as is customary in her parents' culture. Yes, what you're reading between the lines is exactly what I'm referring to.

She's an outsider in her family. An outsider at school being as they live in Hawaii and her family
...more
Amy!
4.5 stars

SO GOOD. I stayed up all night finishing this because once I got into the story, I could.not. put it down. Rani is such a great character. I loved her and felt for her and wanted to be her Get A Grip Friend. I kind of want to listen to the audio to see if the narrator actually performs her raps or just reads them aloud.
Dylan Benito
Mar 19, 2018 rated it did not like it
I did not realize that this book was all about dealing with molestation and assault. I wish that had been part of the book blurb, as I would have not bothered. I am interested in Rani's story, but I can't handle the content.

On the plus side, I grew up in Hawaii in the '90s and it was fun to read a book in that setting.
Janine
1.5/5

I was really hoping to like this book. The binding and cover is gorgeous. I was very enticed by the little snippets I had heard, but that's not what I got.

First off, this novel is dripping of debut. There is so much needless descriptions of outfits (a mistake most first authors have but usually before they get published). Like, I don't care about what colour of adidas hightops the characters owned, really! And Sonia had really poor pacing. She would suddenly tell a bit of what was happening
...more
Shanna Miles
Aug 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Rani is a teenage Gujarati girl living in Hawaii with her hardworking mother and her hardly working father. When her father leaves the family for a younger woman, Rani shaves her head in defiance and seeks solace in her rhymes. As her life gets more and more complicated, hip hop is always there. Rani Patel In Full Effect is about beats, rhymes and the will to overcome every kind of external threat and the internal ones too.

There are a lot of layers to this book and they are all salty-sweet. Ther
...more
- ̗̀  jess  ̖́-
I received this book for free through Goodreads giveaways.

So one thing that I want to say before I review this is that I'm definitely not a part of all three cultures featured in this book, so it was insightful, but it made the book very hard to read. I didn't realize there was a glossary in the back, and there were some words that were not included in the glossary. So a lot of the time I had no idea what the characters were saying, which made it a bit confusing and hard to read.

The story itse
...more
Kate ☀️ Olson
Mar 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Finalist for the 2017 William C. Morris Debut YA Novel award from American Library Association. The best words I can find to describe this story are raw, brave, powerful and rich. This novel is not for the average YA reader and I have to include trigger warnings for rape and incest right away. For mature YA and adult readers, though, this is a heartbreaking look at life for an Indian-American teen rapper on the small Hawaiian island of Moloka’i in the early 1990's. The complex family issues and ...more
P.
Dec 14, 2016 rated it liked it
Rani is a very outward facing person, even though she has insecurities and other things that she's working through. So I think for that reason she has to enact her mistakes to evaluate her negative patterns, and see them in her writing, instead of brooding about them. That is a character trait not so often seen in YA because I think authors are more introspective and they write what they know. So it was refreshing to read Rani, and a little frustrating. I was relieved that her raps weren't total ...more
Lance Rubin
Feb 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Raw, moving story told by a unique, funny, specific voice. Rani Patel is a fantastic character. Also love the hip-hop woven throughout, including all the rhymes written by Rani. BONUS: Takes place in the early 1990s!
Jenn
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017
Overly histrionic and a little too cheesy at times.
Lisa Reviews Books
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, 2018-favorites
I liked it.
E
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was ok
A difficult book because of some of the things Rani experiences
Ashley Blake
Jan 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
Raw, achy, and empowering. I need to print out Rani's raps and post them all over my room.
Sarah Donovan
Sep 09, 2017 rated it liked it
upper ya novel, family, multicultural, incest, poetry/spoken word, resilience
Kërry
May 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing


This book is so good, I wish it had been around when I was a teen.
Sedley Abercrombie
Jul 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Unlike anything I've ever read before. I couldn't put it down. This novel needs its own playlist.
Erin
Oct 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2016, ya-read
A super, super important story with an insightful Author's note and an awesome 80's/90's soundtrack that gets you through those tough to read moments.
Ruby Paustian
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
SO GOOD
Yoonmee
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Rani Patel is a Gujarati American teen living on Moloka'i, a remote Hawaiian island. She loves hip hop and and writing rap lyrics. We meet her after she catches her father cheating on her mother with someone just a few years older than herself. I loved this book for its raw, honest portrayal of how domestic abuse, incest, and rape affect teens, but it was just heartbreaking at times. This is an emotionally tough, but good read for young adults. I loved all the 90s hip hop references, but who kno ...more
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Sonia Patel is a child and adolescent psychiatrist, trained at Stanford University and the University of Hawaii. She lives and practices in Hawaii. Her YA debut, Rani Patel In Full Effect, was a finalist for the Morris Award, received four starred reviews from trade magazines, and was listed on YALSA’s Best Fiction for Young Adults and Kirkus Reviews Best Teen Books of 2016.