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I Am Thunder

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  934 ratings  ·  215 reviews
Fifteen-year-old Muzna Saleem, who dreams of being a writer, struggles with controlling parents who only care about her studying to be a doctor. Forced to move to a new school in South London after her best friend is shamed in a scandal, Muzna realizes that the bullies will follow her wherever she goes. But deciding to stand and face them instead of fighting her instinct t ...more
Paperback, 306 pages
Published January 25th 2018 by Macmillan Children's Books
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The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura StevenI Was Born for This by Alice OsemanClean by Juno DawsonGoodbye, Perfect by Sara  BarnardI Am Thunder by Muhammad    Khan
UKYA in 2018
62 books — 70 voters
The Cruel Prince by Holly BlackWar Storm by Victoria AveyardQueen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra ClareA Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa TahirObsidio by Amie Kaufman
YA Novels of 2018
1,051 books — 5,512 voters


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Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  934 ratings  ·  215 reviews


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may ❀
book #8 done for the booktubeathon ✔️ (i guess i keep going until the day is finish 😏)

pull up a chair bc I got some tea to spill and some roasts to serve

honestly I wasn’t actually planning on writing a review for this bc I didn’t enjoy it and I didn’t want to spend anymore time with it but there are SO MANY things that really made me uncomfortable and I cant just NOT talk about it

due to the fact that I am canadian I feel the need to balance out my salt with sugar and so here are some positives
...more
Erin
Jan 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, netgalley
Fellow bookworms, keep your eyes peeled for this book on January 25th. Set in present day Britain, Muhammed Khan explores the racism and discrimination of the Muslim population in England(and the Western world) while also bringing the topic of the recruitment tactics of some extremist groups . His protagonist is a teenage girl by the name of Muzna Saleem. An only child, Muzna's future is filled with plenty of expectations from her parents, immigrants from Pakistan. All Muzna wants is to be a wri ...more
Sarah
Dec 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, ya, netgalley, z2017
Sometimes I feel like YA novels are a little reserved when it comes to talking about serious issues. I'm not sure why, maybe the author hasn't fully committed to the idea, maybe they don't think YA readers could handle it or maybe they are afraid to write something that could end up being a little controversial. But when I read those books that are afraid to really talk about an issue, it just kind of skits around the issue and the book often ends up being forgettable, one-dimensional and just v ...more
Kate (beautifulbookland)
Nov 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: net-galley, 5-stars
This book is going to stay with me for a long time. I almost didn’t request it on NetGalley, because, honestly, I usually avoid religion like the plague because it scares the shit out of me - how it can completely brain wash someone.

The Plot

Fifteen year old Muzna dreams of being a writer, while her overbearingly pushy parents only care about her becoming a doctor. Her parents control her life, and their family image is everything; so when her best friend is found in a boy’s bed, Muzna is forced
...more
Aditi
“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


Muhammad Khan, a British author, has penned a very intriguing debut YA novel called, I Am Thunder that revolves around a teenage Muslim girl living with her parents in Britain where everyday she wakes up to find a new challenge or bully to overcome with, but her life drastically changes when
...more
Marie Andrews
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I Am Thunder follows the story of 15 year old Muzna, an ordinary Muslim-teen, trying to fit into a new high school in London. Her strict Pakistani parents want only the best for her - urging her to become a Dr, even though Muzna dreams of becoming an author, especially so she can represent Muslim voices in writing. Whilst trying to settle into the new school environment, she becomes friends with Arif, and it is this relationship, along with his brother, Jameel, that Muzna starts to question. Sho ...more
Suzanne Bhargava
Dec 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’ve been prevaricating about writing this review, because I wanted to do the book justice. It was brilliant. A strong contender for my Carnegie nomination next year.

As debuts go, I was blown away by the dialogue and narrative voice, which feels fresh and authentic (it was brave genius of Muhammad Khan to use his South London students as beta readers / slang police).

The story is mainly about Islamophobia, extremism and the balancing act of being a British born Pakistani teenage girl. Woven thr
...more
Usman
Jan 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Witty, smart and clever. I had heard a lot about this book and was a bit worried it would not live up to its hype. It is even more amazing. The main character is detailed and very relatable. She explores her faith and her identity in a very realistic way. She reminded me of my younger sister who is reading the book and will post her own review in time. The reader sees events and experiences shape Muzna in real time. When things start to go wrong she has no one to turn to. This is the strength of ...more
Annie
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the most confronting books I have read this year and a story that really hits the nail on the head. Firstly, I want to take this moment to thank the author, Muhammad Khan, for writing this story. This book is definitely an eye opener for Non-Muslim readers and a warm hug to the Muslim readers as stated in his author’s note. Whilst dialogue among 16 year olds can be cheesy, I found the book to be very well written, honest and beautifully illustrated the world today. It's a book that will d ...more
Katie.dorny
Aug 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
I really didn’t want this to have a love story; I understand why it did veer that way but I didn’t want it to be.

This book veered wildly from I love it woah to this is dragging and it’s moving a bit too fast/extreme?

I have to state that as a white Christian I am not able
to comment on everything in this book - I am not knowledgable on the common environment of a British muslim.

This book was very interesting for me; but for about 50% of the book it also felt very young and I dragged my feet a lit
...more
Jananee (headinherbooks)
The Rating: 2.5/5 stars

In order to best summarise my thoughts, I’ve decided to split it up into things I liked and things I didn’t like so let’s just get into it.

Just a brief summary first to get started though – this book follows Muzna who’s a teen trying to fit in a world where most everything seems to be going against her. We follow her as she tries to juggle the differing societal expectations of both her British and Pakistani backgrounds, her overprotective parents, her unruly best friend
...more
Taneika
Jan 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received this book for free from Pan Macmillan Australia in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I Am Thunder is an own voices story about a Pakistani and Muslim girl named Muzna who is just trying to fit in and deal with her controlling, overprotective parents. Muzna just wants to try and fit into her new high school while also dealing with her controlling, overprotective parents, boys, Islamophobia and figuring out what it mea
...more
Briar's Reviews
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Fateha
Jul 06, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5* not bad, interesting premise, however too many cliche.
naz
Jan 20, 2018 rated it did not like it
The more I think about and flick back through this book, the worse it gets.
halfirishgrin
Sep 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
It was cruel to bring me up in Britain make me go to school with British kids,
then expect me to act like a girl from back home. Outside of having brown skin, speaking the language, and half-heartedly cheering the cricket team on with Dad, I had no real idea of what it meant to be Pakistani. I mean, how could I?


I Am Thunder is a YA novel unlike any I have come across before, just because it takes a topic that is timely and significant and tackles it head-on. Muhammad Khan doesn't pull any pu
...more
Kausr H.
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Made me proud to be a Muslim. Muzna is an amazing hero. I saw myself and my sisters in her. Loved how the author touched on so many important issues with honesty and compassion.
Alex Granger
Nov 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is an absolute tour de force! Instead of watering down difficult topics like Islamophobia and radicalization, Khan tackles them head on through the innocent eyes of an intelligent and relatable heroine. Muzna is adorably flawed and naïve and perhaps the novel’s greatest achievement is in slowly developing her into the powerful young lady she is destined to become. Rarely do teenage female protagonists go on to achieve this level of heroism, so it is only fitting that Muzna should be a ...more
Rachel
Jan 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
• Family, faith and extremism
• Subtle but powerful
• Muzna is intelligent and funny
• The South London slang is “next level”
• Truly eye opening, and a must read for everyone; the voice UKYA is crying out for
Aditi ~ A Thousand Words A Million Books
DNF ON PAGE 204.

I expected a lot from this book, to be honest. I read the description, and thought I’d chanced upon a strong, powerful novel with a Muslim protagonist showing us the real Islam that gets hidden by the media and the violence and I WAS VERY EXCITED FOR ALL OF IT.

Within the first chapter, this book fell flat for me, and by page 200, it was so unbearable, I simply had to put it down for good.

Let me explain why:

1) THE WRITING IS SO AWKWARD: I’m not sure if the author believes that
...more
rebeccca elane (pistachiobooks)
There were multiple points in this book where I wanted to DNF it and that was SO disappointing. I kept some review notes on my phone and most of them are just ranting. I was very excited about this book, mainly because the plot was like nothing I have ever read in a YA novel. I expected a gripping and honest book about the process behind why and how people are radicalized, instead, I got something that was trying to cram in as many pop culture references as possible.

This book follows Muzna, a ch
...more
Megan  (YABookers)
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book free from the publisher.

Fifteen-year-old Muzna Saleem is passionate about writing. She struggles with Maths and Science but her parents want her to become a doctor. After her best friend is shamed by a scandal, her parents force her to cut off contact and she is moved to a new school. Having to face the world alone is a scary concept for Muzna, as she has always had her friend by her side. At her new school, she finds her voice and pushes back against p
...more
Sophie
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
*I received a free copy of I am Thunder from My Kinda Book (Macmillian) in exchange for an honest review.* - Release Date: 25 January 2018

This debut Novel by Muhammed Khan is an own voices story, revealing what it’s like for Muslim’s growing up with protagonists of them all being classed as a ‘terrorist’. I am Thunder is all about 15 year old Munza Saleem who has a passion for becoming a writer once finishing high school, except there are two problems – her parents are strict and want her to bec
...more
Jessikah Hope
Oct 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017, young-adult
A brilliant new voice and a daring story. I can't wait to write my full review.
Rosanna Threakall
**3.5 Stars**

This had slow beginning but it really picked up toward the end!

Love the main character.

Some of the language (especially in texts) didn't feel authentic.
Kate (Reading Through Infinity)
3.5 stars

This is an own-voices, YA contemporary about a teenage Muslim girl who unintentionally ends up involved with religious extremists. This novel gives non-Muslims an intense, direct look at just some of the issues that Muslims in the UK have to deal with. The depictions of Islamophobia drawn on real life events and are a stark reminder to us all of the religious bias and inequality that exists around us. Muzna's experiences of radicalisation are realistic, visceral, and at times harrowing,
...more
Clara
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
That was a brutal, but important read. I'm glad I started my year with this one - it's easy and quick to go through while still being a hard, deep read.
Ren (A Bookish Balance)
ARC provided by Netgalley and Pan Macmillan.

DNF @ 20%

So, this wasn't for me. I found I Am Thunder read a bit too juvenile for my personal tastes and I had such a hard time getting past the dialogue. Every line her best friend says is especially cringeworthy and made it difficult to want to continue on in the novel. I think Muhammad Khan has a lot of potential as a writer, she has some really great descriptive scenes here, so I am willing to check out her novels in the future, but this is a pass
...more
Annalise
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Again, it’s been a while since I actually read this book as I’ve been a bit rubbish at reviewing recently… but I loved this book so much I had to review it. I may have been raving about it on Twitter a little too much already.

I don’t want to say too much except - just read it. You know when you read a book that is timely and political, touches a tough subject matter, and is just so fresh and unique, you devour it and want to thrust a copy upon everyone you meet? This is that book. It’s so exciti
...more
Kath Middleton
Dec 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Muzna is a plain looking girl who lacks self-confidence. Her Muslim parents move her to a new school when her father loses his job and her best friend is deemed to be a bad influence. At her new school she falls for Arif, the school heart-throb who, unbelievably, falls for her too. His brother persuades Muzna to wear the hijab. Her own parents disapprove. Gradually, she finds she’s become enmeshed in more than she’s comfortable with. Can she be true to herself?

This story is immediate and compell
...more
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Muhammad Khan is a maths teacher in a secondary school in Tooting and takes his inspiration from the children he teaches, as well as his own upbringing as a British-born Pakistani. He lives in South London and will be studying for a creative writing MA next year at Roehampton.

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