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Mariam Sharma Hits the Road

3.48  ·  Rating details ·  347 ratings  ·  99 reviews
The summer after her freshman year in college, Mariam is looking forward to working and hanging out with her best friends: irrepressible and beautiful Ghazala and religious but closeted Umar. But when a scandalous photo of Ghaz appears on a billboard in Times Square, Mariam and Umar come up with a plan to rescue her from her furious parents. And what better escape than New ...more
ebook, 320 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by HarperTeen
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3.48  · 
Rating details
 ·  347 ratings  ·  99 reviews

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Jun 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
I thought Sheba Karim would have to work really hard for me to dislike this book more than I disliked That Thing We Call a Heart but wow! She really put in her 110%!

I am not going to declare to the world every label I ascribe to, but I fall in to many of the 'categories' this book tries to place people in - and 'Muslim' is one of them. And as one, THIS BOOK IS NOT POSITIVE MUSLIM REPRESENTATION!

I would not say this book is not realistic or that the desi/Muslim community is "not like this".
Cait • A Page with a View
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is such a beautiful story on so many levels. It's a fun summer contemporary but the complex, lovable characters are what really made it stand out for me.

Mariam goes on a road trip to New Orleans with her 2 friends to escape the scandal of one of them in an American Apparel-type underwear billboard in Times Square. The diverse life experiences of the 3 college students and their honest discussions about faith, family, racism, and trying to find your place in a screwed up world were so incre
Laura (bbliophile)
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018-releases
I have quite a lot of complicated feelings towards this book.
Cori Reed
2.5 Stars

I am so conflicted on this one. I started reading a manuscript of this many moons ago and liked what I read, so wanted to find and read a finished copy. There is a lot of commentary in this book that is very important, but I also recognize that there are some flaws. Overall, I enjoyed the plot and think more people should pick it up and form their own opinion!
Jen Ryland
Who can resist a road trip book (not me!)

This is a story about a group of Pakistani-American teens who hit the road, headed from New Jersey to New Orleans. One is hiding from the fallout after she's featured on a Times Square billboard, one is looking for her absentee father, and one is deciding when and whether to come out. Their friendship was great and their adventures were both touching and hilarious.

Read more of my reviews on! Check out my Bookstagram! Or check out my Jen In T
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: aoc, poc
i was very excited for this but it was underwhelming and uncomfortable at some parts especially when it came to omar's sexuality...
The writing leaves something to be desired, as do some of the choices made in the story...but that is easy to let go of when you consider this is a YA book about three brown teens on a road trip from New Jersey to New Orleans. All three are seeking some kind of closure in their lives and find it on the road. They also dig into racism, both that directed toward them and that they direct outward. The exploration of sexuality is more shallow than I'd like to have seen, but given this is really Mari ...more
Haadiya // Hiatus
this doesnt sound good but hello its pakistani and im here
Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight

I assumed I would love this one, based on the fact that I will never, ever turn down reading a road trip book. Especially when best friends come together to help one of their other friends, so this one sold me from the synopsis. Unfortunately, it didn't end up being as epic as I'd hoped. But alas, there were some definite high points, so let's start with those!

The Good:

It deals with a
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
“You’re thinking about it the wrong way. Maybe you don’t have to fit in with them, maybe you have to make space for yourself.”

I just wanted to love this so much and ended up not really liking it much and I feel kinda sad about it. Miriam Sharma Hits the Road follows Miriam and her two closest friends, Umar and Ghaz, as they roadtrip to New Orleans and discover more about themselves in the process.

Things I Liked
I really loved the focus on friendship in the story, and it’s what drew me to th
This has pretty polarizing book, but like I think it's because people say this is a Muslim book. I don't think this book is intended to be about being Muslim. I think it's about identity and friendship and how sometimes that can get lost when we try to fit into other people's expectations. That being said, I can't speak for any of the rep, but I really enjoyed myself. <3 RTC
I really enjoyed this friendship/roadtrip story. Underage drinking, pot brownies, and descriptions of sex, so I’d say meant for HS readers.
Abeer Hoque
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-recommend
Mariam Sharma Hits The Road is Sheba Karim’s third YA novel, as witty, charming, and fun loving as her first two but with a sharp political bent that distinguishes it from her earlier fiction. Three South Asian American teenagers go on a road trip from New Jersey to New Orleans, each of them struggling with their own personal demons along the way. Their encounters throughout the South, ranging from poignant to hilarious to ominous, transform their perspectives as well as their relationships with ...more
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: coming-soon-18
Packed with snappy dialogue, this classic road trip tale will make you very, very happy. One of my favorite reads of 2018, the plot is awesome, the characters are awesomer, the diversity is out of this world, and the dialogue will, simply, blow your mind. You have to read this book.

Full Review:
Jun 26, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
A fun road-trip story that also includes some opportunities to discuss heavier things like emotional trauma, bias/prejudice, and identity. There were a few cringey moments in the book (mostly jabs that are intended as humor), but overall, I really enjoyed the story of Mariam and her two friends, Ghaz and Umar. I appreciate how well the teens respect each other's needs - sometimes they give each other space, but other times, they force each other to deal with emotional issues and hold each other' ...more
This is pretty great on all fronts. Three Pakistani-American teens face challenges in their communities and the larger world including religion, cultural expectations, what it means to be brown and Muslim in the United States, and just plain becoming an adult and what it feels like to be separating from your parents and community as you grow up. Well rounded characters, authentic dialog that strays into edification but in a good way, a realistic portrayal of the range of adults in these kids' li ...more
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I think this was a well-written book and I enjoyed it a lot. My only issue is that it is about prejudice, in this case against brown people, and yet I feel the characters in this book were very prejudiced against the American South in general. Sheba Karim does say that EVERYONE is prejudiced to a degree. Yet I felt this in particular was not in keeping with the theme of the book.
Such a quick read as well as hella readable since I read it in like less than 12 hours

Mariam Sharma Hits the Road tackles a lot of important topics from Islamophobia to queer Muslims (one of three main characters being one) to different types of Muslims and more all in a road trip setting! I always love those. Other plus points are the friendship, zero romance, hilarious and heartwarming moments and yet some of the things felt too forced and not executed all that well. So I need to think about m
Mar 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, lgbtq

I was so excited for this book, and I wish I enjoyed it more... it wasn't that I disliked it, necessarily, than just kind of tired at some parts. A lot of the dialogue and thought between the main characters just kind of felt like the rants we have in our head and/or articles we read about cultural politics today; comparisons of privilege, who's better off than the other, here's all the ways we're discriminated against for being gay or confident in ourselves... and these are all good things to t

Tadashi Hamada
You know those sentiments about minority characters deserving to have YA tropes usually reserved for white characters? I was thrilled when I found out about this book on Goodreads--it's an OwnVoices YA book about three teens--two of them are Pakistani Muslim, one is Indian-Pakistani who grew up being raised by an atheist single mother, and one of them is also gay--going on a road trip. Road trip books in YA usually revolve around majority-white ensembles or white main characters--think Paper Tow ...more
Raven Andrus
Sep 29, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5. Really sweet book that deals with serious issues in a great way that's easily accessible. Love the diversity and the road trip aspect. So excited for more people to read this!!
Jul 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a great read. It’s about race and prejudice and religion and coming of age. But all the while being a lighthearted and uplifting story of friendship. Even if YA isn’t your jam, check it out.
Cheyenne Teska
Mariam, Umar, and Ghaz are three teens who have been emotionally damaged and scarred by their parents in very different ways. Each of them, finding friendship and loyalty in each other, decide to go on a spontaneous road trip. Along the way- like any good road trip story- the characters find themselves and come to realize that what they've got and who they are is better than what they've been chasing their entire lives.

Mariam's father abandoned her family when she was only two years old. She's a
May 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
This took me a while to get to (not through any fault of the book, but it's just my own laziness) but I really enjoyed it. It's a fast-paced read that focuses on three friends who all road trip to New Orleans together, each with a different thing to work through. It was both funny at times but also very serious. Mariam Sharma Hits the Road definitely has a little bit of something for everyone.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
really enjoyed this audiobook. it was a lot of fun but I hoped for the ending to not be so "abrupt"
Marta Boksenbaum
Jul 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, teen-lit
A really fun road trip book, and maybe a tad heavy handed on the current social and political nature of America, but isn’t that how teens are when they start to inform themselves? Very well written and fun to read.
Jan 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Probably more New Adult than YA, the characters are all in college.
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
More like 3.5 from me

(I want to preface this by saying I am not represented in this book and so I cannot speak to the accuracy of the representation here. I realize I don't say this every review where it's the case and I'm trying to be better about it. While I can read things like Chinese American adoption and some other smaller intersectionalities, that's also a myriad of different experiences there as well. Just saying).

Anyway so I want to list what I really liked about this book which were th
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My third YA novel, Mariam Sharma Hits the Road,, about three best friends on a road trip through the American South, is out June 2018 from Harper Collins. It's the first YA road trip book featuring South Asian Americans!

My second young adult novel, That Thing We Call a Heart, is out in May 2017 from HarperTeen. It fe
“If any of this ended in an explosion, I hoped it would be one that made us burn brighter, stronger than ever before.” 1 likes
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