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The Marriage Clock

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  149 ratings  ·  67 reviews
In Zara Raheem's fresh, funny, smart debut, a young, Muslim-American woman is given three months to find the right husband or else her traditional Indian parents will find one for her--a novel with a universal story that everyone can relate to about the challenges of falling in love.

To Leila Abid's traditional Indian parents, finding a husband in their South Asian-Muslim A
Paperback, 368 pages
Published July 23rd 2019 by William Morrow Paperbacks
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Mayumi Maybe women should be allowed to think of whatever they want. I'm all for women wanting things other than marriage and kids but why are you trying to…moreMaybe women should be allowed to think of whatever they want. I'm all for women wanting things other than marriage and kids but why are you trying to shame those who do want it? The point is that they should be able to choose. Stop being so bitter Barb.(less)

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3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  149 ratings  ·  67 reviews

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ARC received from the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

I wanted to love this book, I really did. But I had so many issues with the protagonist and her attitude. For a 26 year old high school teacher, Liela was very immature, indecisive and judgemental. Her Bollywood dreams for a love story felt like a 14 year old's soliloquy. And her unrealistic expectations for a Mr.Perfect made me roll my eyes constantly.
Her plight was relatable to some extent as the pressure to m
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I expected this to be a typical romcom, but there was much more depth to the characters and story than I anticipated. The mother, her friends/cousin, and Leila are each flawed and complicated in their own ways and you can't help but cheer for them throughout. I read this in one sitting because I could not put it down. Raheem's book is a hilarious yet honest look at love, heartbreak and the pressures that come with cultural expectations. I recommend this to not only gain insight about Muslim-Indi ...more
I so wanted to love this book. I was actually very sure that I would adore it. I won’t say that my expectations were necessarily very high, but I just felt it in my bones and all I’m feeling is sad after finishing the book.

Though I’ve been blogging for around 2 years now, I’m still not very observant and tend to not notice any flaws or problematic issues or cliches in the writing unless they are very explicit. I actually had to ask my other blogger friends what it meant when reviewers talked abo
Felicia Grossman
I LOVED this book. Like totally loved. Leila is funny and adorable and you only want good things for her (and men who don't ghost her say "BAM" too much or ask about her genetic history or gives her his honest age...). You really feel how she's torn between loving her culture and being frustrated by it (and her well-meaning, lovable, but at times frustrating parents). Her struggle for balance is so genuine.

And every single character is so well-drawn, form Leila's group of friends, to her various
Rachel Strolle
this book is a whole ass mood
Julia Phillips
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So fresh and charming and fun! I adored being in Leila's world, from her girls' nights with her friends to her conversations with her loving, pressuring parents to her many first dates. What a joy to read.
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book. Really opened my eyes to the Muslim culture. Leila's dilemma was presented in a very real fashion. Her thoughts and struggles were real and poignant. I applaud her decision in the end.
Jul 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ARC provided by the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review, thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own

Hey When Dimple Met Rishi check this out, THIS is how to have a very good rep and a good plot.

I absolutely LOVED this book!
It was really well written, the language was simple and straight to the point.
The plot was interesting to say the least, there was always something going on and it had no down moment.

I loved the rep in this book, both racial and religious.
Erica Boyce
Feb 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a lovely and hilarious book about family, love, and finding yourself as an adult within your culture's expectations. I devoured it in three days and was so sad to see it end! Raheem deftly draws a cast of very real characters that I felt for and grew to love very quickly. I laughed out loud at several moments! A really fun and thought-provoking read.
Nalini Srivastava
Loved the writing and the content is so relatable. I recommend everyone to read this book.
The Marriage Clock – Out 7/23/19
Leila Abid's traditional Indian parents want her to find a husband and are willing to arrange a marriage for her but Leila, she keeps wishing for a Bollywood romance (love BEFORE marriage). Her parents tell her that she has 3 months to find a husband how she wants and then if she can’t find one, they will arrange one for her.
I wanted to love this book! It is highly anticipated and I loved that it was based on South Asian characters and community but
Mikaela (Booklover1974)
Jul 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
3,5 star rounded up!

This was a good story about the pressure a Muslim, South Asian girl usually feels regarding marriage.
Is all your self worth in how fast you can get married and have children? There's a lot of great questions about family pressure... How far do you let yourself get pressured?
I'm not a Muslim or from South Asia so it was very interesting to read this!
K Chess
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THE MARRIAGE CLOCK was a fun, fast read. Leila is a convincing modern heroine and the Muslim/Indian-American cultural context added depth and interest to her story. I found the speed-dating scene hilarious, the rainstorm swoonworthy, the swift reversals surprising and the resolution satisfying.
Christie Grotheim
This was such an enjoyable read! Leila finds herself pulled between cultures when it comes to dating, love, and marriage, and I rooted for her as she navigates all kinds of dates, some cringe-worthy. This line, especially, made me laugh out loud: "I wanted to grab twenty units of Botox and pump them into his face until he looked like the Mahmoud in the photographs." This is definitely a book most women can relate to. The relationship with her parents was sweet and believable, and I was surprised ...more
I chose to read The Marriage Clock because I’m always interested in reading own voices writing about their culture. About this time last year I read a book the premise of which was finding a man through Though that book was comical, at the end I felt unsatisfied as a reader as the female protagonist didn’t seem to grow emotionally from her experiences. That is not true of The Marriage Clock. I flew through this book in just a few hours. Raheem’s writing style is simple, direct, and ea ...more
Mar 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let me start by saying that if you’re not familiar with traditional Indian customs, you may have difficulty understanding Leila’s approach to dating, but for someone like me, I found this book to be so extremely relatable. Leila Abid is given 3 months to find a husband otherwise she’ll end up with someone her parents select for her. What follows is a humorous and realistic glimpse into the world of dating from an Indian American woman’s eyes.

Even though most American women Leila’s age are more
I was super looking forward to this book, but it does not live up to its earlier reviews or publisher blurbs.

Unfortunately, the main character isn't very sympathetic. On paper she's 26, but thinks, acts, and reacts like a character in a YA novel. It was hard to feel sorry for her or empathize with her situation when she enforces no boundaries with her parents, isn't forthcoming or honest but is judgmental with her romantic interests, and approaches love like a teenager. She even handles her big
This forthcoming novel (July 2019) might easily be written off as "chick lit," but behind the humor, the angst, the determined search for a husband, is a pretty powerful look at the life of a first-generation Indian Muslim young woman whose family's expectations for her are marriage--first, last, and everything. While reading this, I happened on a new NPR report about marriages in India where arranged marriages still account for 4 0ut of 5 unions and where there are dire consequences for choosin ...more
Christine SY
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was a spark that I needed in life. As a single, 24-year-old college student busy with her own life, marriage is something I have not yet even thought about, and this book definitely opened my eyes in different ways. The Marriage Clock made me realize marriage and love shouldn’t be something forced and rushed upon and that this chapter you encounter in life will come when you meet the right one. Thank you Zara Raheem for reminding me that love shouldn’t be based on a clock, and that it’ ...more
Jennifer S. Brown
I won this ARC in a charity auction, and I confess I put off starting the book because I thought it was going to be another romance novel. I'm so pleased to report it was so much more. Leila's parents think she's too old (twenty-six) to still be single, and they want to arrange a marriage for her, as is customary in the South American-Muslim community her parents were raised in. Watching the dynamics of American-born Leila, who uses Tinder and speed dating and her traditional parents was fascina ...more
Jan 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, arc, january
A good fit for readers of gentle romance or stories about family dynamics, particularly as it highlights a cultural tradition that many may not be as familiar with.
Megan Collins
Apr 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THE MARRIAGE CLOCK is a fun yet poignant debut that follows Leila, an American-born Indian woman whose parents are determined to marry her off to a man of their choosing within the South Asian-Muslim American community. Leila has her own plans, though, which include being swept off her feet by a man equal to a Bollywood hero. When she strikes a deal with her parents in which they’ll allow her three months to find a husband on her own terms before they step in, the adventure really begins. What f ...more
Abigail (abigailsbookself)
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a charming and utterly lovable book! I kept finding myself grinning and laughing out-loud (when I wasn't cringing at the content that was WAY too relatable). I recommend this for anyone looking for a fun romp through dating in your mid-twenties and anyone interested in learning a new perspective on Indian culture.

Under mounting pressure to get married and "start" her life, twenty-six year old English teacher Leila makes a deal with her parents -- if she can't find her own husband in three
Nov 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Leila is an independent American woman who lives with her more traditional Indian parents. She's a teacher and enjoys spending time with her friends after work and going on occasional dates. Her parents start pressing her to get married. She's 26 and her mother wants to arrange her marriage. Leila asks her mother to give her a few months and if she still hasn't found anyone, her mother can analyze all the biodata sheets she wants to try and find someone right for Leila. Leila enlists her friends ...more
Apr 07, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to like this book so much! The protagonist, a Muslim American woman who feels trapped into a deal she makes with her parents: find a mate before their wedding anniversary or have one chosen for her. She isn't really comfortable in her own skin, she isn't comfortable with her family, seems at odds with her religion. I waited for her to grow, to change, to commit to something. Sadly, though she whines about her mother, her friends, her circumstance, she just doesn't seem to get a handle o ...more
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Leila is approaching the age her parents insist she find a husband or allow them to choose one for her. As a young Indian woman, her unrealistic visions of love are based on her Bollywood obsession, making most of her potential suitors unacceptable. Humorous and clever, I enjoyed the story and the characters in the novel. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC. I recommend this one.
This was a cute and humorous book that shared the cultural struggles regarding dating and marriage of a South Asian/Muslim American girl. I learned quite a bit and laughed my way through all the frogs Leila had to date looking for her Bollywood Prince. I would have given it a higher rating but I found Leila’s personality a bit grating and wished she would have been a little more forthcoming with her parents sooner than later. But I thought it was a good debut and will definitely check out the au ...more
Daniela Petrova
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I so loved this book about family tradition and relationships. Leila is a very interesting and relatable young woman with a great sense of humor. She had me laughing out loud throughout the book. This fun, breezy novel will be perfect as a beach read. I highly recommend it!
Noelle Salazar
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
LOVED this book. Elegantly written and fun, quick, and insightful. Lovely and sassy Leila is so many of us women in America with our lists of wants and needs for a partner - but unlike many of us, she is Muslim-American and her parents have very different ideas about how marriage is done. The clock is TICKING and Zara Raheem kept me laughing and commiserating as Leila went on one date after another, finding suitable men and not-so-suitable men - nearly sacrificing her own happiness until conclud ...more
3.5 stars. This really wasn't what I was expecting. I think I would have liked it more if I understood beforehand what it was and what it wasn't. Sorry for the vagueness, I don't want to accidentally give anything away. Still a fun read.
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