Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “An Emotion of Great Delight” as Want to Read:
An Emotion of Great Delight
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

An Emotion of Great Delight

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  9,021 ratings  ·  1,834 reviews
From bestselling and National Book Award–nominated author Tahereh Mafi comes a stunning novel about love and loneliness, navigating the hyphen of dual identity, and reclaiming your right to joy—even when you’re trapped in the amber of sorrow.

It’s 2003, several months since the US officially declared war on Iraq, and the American political world has evolved. Tensions are hi
ebook, 256 pages
Published June 1st 2021 by HarperCollins
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about An Emotion of Great Delight, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Sky Daly content wise, it's heavy and can be upsetting. Writing is YA…morecontent wise, it's heavy and can be upsetting. Writing is YA(less)
Dragons*☆4Ever The sexual content would be two kisses that were passionate, but did not go any farther than kissing. (I honestly felt uncomfortable reading it but if…moreThe sexual content would be two kisses that were passionate, but did not go any farther than kissing. (I honestly felt uncomfortable reading it but if you have a high tolerance for romance then you'll be fine) It focuses both on what the characters emotionally and physically felt. The language would be a frequent use of a lot of swears but for more details you can check this amazing website with part about this book:

Rule of Wolves by Leigh BardugoChain of Iron by Cassandra ClareLore by Alexandra BrackenWe Free the Stars by Hafsah FaizalWings of Ebony by J. Elle
YA Novels of 2021
789 books — 2,698 voters
A ​Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. MaasRule of Wolves by Leigh BardugoChain of Iron by Cassandra ClareThe ​Crown of Gilded Bones by Jennifer L. ArmentroutEmpire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff
Can't Wait Books of 2021
1,161 books — 2,497 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  9,021 ratings  ·  1,834 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of An Emotion of Great Delight
May 13, 2020 marked it as to-read
The title: An Emotion of Great Delight.
The desription: "a really sad book".
dana sun
May 03, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I started this book because it was Ramadan and I figured I could read another book with muslim rep... and I hated it.

I’ve felt weird about Mafi’s muslim (hijabi??) rep in the past with Nazeera from Shatter Me and how she regarded the hijab as an accessory without actually speaking about the religious significance of it properly. I was hoping to see her representation the religion better in this book but I was just really disappointed.

The setting of this book is after 9/11 but honestly this boo
Jananie (thisstoryaintover)
brb i'll be crying for the next year. i loved this. Tahereh has a way of capturing profound sadness like no one else—the kind of emotion I often felt myself feeling as a teen that was inexplicable. While I wish we explored a couple things more, I think this was incredible. there were just so many lines i marked down and wanted to burn to memory, and i felt my breath leave me in so many of the scenes. i wish i didn't relate so hard to this (in more ways than one) but i really did. for anyone who' ...more
Mar 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary
3.5 stars

I felt my heart grow harder as I moved through the halls, felt it get heavier.
One day, I worried, it would simply fall out.

I personally prefer AVLEOS over this book because I think the former was more developed, but I’m not complaining: An Emotion of Great Delight has a charming melancholic atmosphere and a romance you can’t help but root for. This is the most Tahereh Mafi’s style has reminded me of dark gritty YA contemporaries I love to read. I knew she had the potential and the s
S the Reader
Jan 31, 2021 rated it it was ok
"Like, you know what a burqa is? Those gross tent things the Taliban forces women to wear in Afghanistan?" *


Look, whatever our main character's beliefs are, it is irresponsible, as an author, to throw out something as damaging and misleading as the above and not address it again. While there is no doubt that many in the world, Taliban or otherwise, force particular groups of women to wear the burqa, there are many other women in the world who wear the burqa as an expression of their faith
Sahil Javed
another sad contemporary from tahereh mafi with a beautiful title? where do i sign up to have my emotions destroyed?
Mar 31, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
We have a name and we know it's "really sad".

Dana Al-Basha |  دانة الباشا
[April 4, 2020] Joy... happiness?
[May 26, 2021] The character's name Shadi which means Happy in Farsi but in Arabic it's شادي this name is for males and it means a singer with a beautiful voice, it could be applied to birds and humans, if you want to name a female we add a ة and it becomes شادية.

[June 2, 2021] That's a first! I didn't like this book. I really disliked Shadi. First time I didn’t enjoy a book by Tahereh. I found the book full of nonsense sometimes and at other times full of pain a
I think often art requires no prior knowledge. This book however may need some context. Tahereh wrote the first draft of this book in a week. She had wanted to write this story of pain, she wanted it to be brief and end in hope not necessarily a resolution. She wanted to emphasize the realness of the pain young people experience. How beneath our muslim identities we experience grief, sorrow, joy, helplessness and pain the same way. With that context in mind the book is a masterpiece.

It is the p
Fer Bañuelos ✨


Thank you netgalley for providing me with an e-arc of this book in exchange for an honest review!

I'm stuck between 2.5 and 3 stars. It's been a long time since I've been this conflicted about a book.

We follow Shadi, a muslim girl living in a post 9/11 America. She struggles to find balance between her beliefs and her feelings, having a lot of problems at home. She takes us in an extremely emotional journey, one that you can't leave without feeling the weight of it in your h
Rafael Sifuentes
Apr 11, 2021 rated it it was ok
a lot happened but at the same time nothing really did (???)
Melissa (LifeFullyBooked)
I absolutely loved A Very Large Expanse of Sea and thought that it had so much to say about race in America today. Unfortunately, this one did not resonate with me in the same way. I felt very uncomfortable with some of the statements made, and after reading a couple of reviews written by Muslim-Americans I can understand why I might have felt that way. I can't even begin to speak from their point of view, so I encourage readers to seek out the reviews from members of that community for a more a ...more
Saajid Hosein
Feb 07, 2022 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compelling, heartbreaking, hopeful. Really enjoyed it. I'm not going to review this book, but rather defend it because I'm starting to realize that a lot of people aren't too fond of the story for reasons I disagree with. All opinions, however, are valid. So if you hated this book, you're not wrong. These are just my opinions.

I'm seeing a lot of unfair critiques of the book from especially Muslim reviewers, who don't feel like the book properly represented them. While representation is great, re
imman 🎃
Feb 11, 2021 rated it it was ok
It is so hard to read a book so close to home, so close to me as a person, and to walk away feeling so conflicted. I wanted so badly to like this review, to follow Shadi's journey. But there is so much done wrong in this book, that I felt so frustrated.

The first problem I had with this book is that there is just way too much going on, in a short amount of time. We meet Shadi, and we learn the following
* Her Dad is in the hospital
* Her Brother has died
* She lost her best friend
* She likes he
1.5/5 ⭐️ uh..it’s definitely a book. and it has words…
What was the point?? Where was the plot?? I don’t understand what I just read. This whole “book” was just super depressing. And wtf was that representation..at this point you can’t even say the main character is Muslim. She wants her dad dead, like she’s literally praying for him to die..and her and this other character kissed…
Someone help me out cause I think I lost a few brain cells. Like I literally don’t know what I just read. This book s
[ 2 stars ]

“I lived, always, on the uncertain plane of a hyphen.”

guys I'm fine I'm doing absolutely amazing
no I'm not Tahereh Mafi why why why

I wanted to love this.
no I knew i was going to love this.
I trusted the high ratings here, everyone called this book an "amazing" and a "absolute must-read" after reading this I do agree. Taherehs description of grief and sadness is written so beautifully and truthfully but that doesn't make this book magically perfect when it has possibly the worst Musli
Apr 16, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
a really sad book?

ok i'm in
➵ this made me cry tears of sadness and happiness, of loss and love. stories around family, faith, and fondness always pull me in and this one held me so strongly under the grey clouds. rtc.
Avani ✨
Jul 07, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. ❤️
Jun 01, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i did not expect to cry as much as i did with this one but here i am still, in fact, crying.
April (Aprilius Maximus)
DNF at 50%
Ok so, I loved this book. But, I'm also not Muslim. So I'd suggest checking out what Muslim readers are saying about the book/rep first.

Tahereh's writing is extremely beautiful and doesn't miss once. Everything (everything being the feelings) is described in great detail. Although there was something missing...other than several pages because the book ended in a confusing and abrupt way.

Out of the characters I only liked Shadi, Ali, his parents and Noah, they had the most depth. Zahra I really
olcia (book.olandia)
4.4🌟love it
Noura Khalid (theperksofbeingnoura)
Thank you Librofm and HarperCollins for the gifted ALC!

Where to start? Tahereh Mafi has been one of my favourite authors growing up. The Shatter Me series accompanied me when I was in school and I recall those being some of the best years of my life. I've been very excited about her writing books in different genres. I read A Very Large Expanse of Sea a few years back and I'll admit, it wasn't a favourite. I was a lot more excited about this one though and I definitely enjoyed this one a lot mor
Aug 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
4.5/5 stars

i’m thinking about the way tahereh writes love and grief and dedication to god. the way she explores the identity of an american born iranian muslim; the feelings of belonging to only certain aspects lf each identity, and the way this estrangement is likened to the uncertainty that a hyphen holds. that bridge between culture and religion and nationality and language. tahereh talks about making the choice to choose religion over belonging- how she wonders if it would be easy to distanc
Stella ☆Paper Wings☆
May 22, 2020 marked it as to-read
So you're telling me a book that's called An Emotion of Great Delight... is actually filled with emotions of great sadness??
[image error]
Whatever you say.
Jaye Berry
Jun 11, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021, ya, contemporary, library
TW: islamophobia, physically / mentally sick parents, past sibling death, self harm, depression, overall misery

I say this semi-respectfully but what the fuck?

An Emotion of Great Delight takes place in 2003 right after the US declared war on Iraq. Tensions are high and hate crimes against Muslims are getting worse. Shadi who wears hijab keeps her head down but amongst all her family drama, she can't be bothered to worry about what else is going on.

I know I've fallen out of love with this author (
Sep 23, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
jesus, NO.

the plot? sounded great.
the execution? a pile of stinky poo poo.
the characters? i'm not violent, but i will gladly see them drown.
the logic? none.
the prose? vomit inducing.

I made 96 highlights when I read this on my Kindle. Close to none of them are flattering. However, here are some lines from the book, and you tell me what you think.

Lightning tore the sky in two and I shivered, jerkily, as if electrocuted. (what?!)

I approached the car like a crescent moon, my back curve
2.5 Estrellas
I didn´t want him to do anything more to break my parent's hearts from beyond the grave. I didn´t want him to be defined by his weakness any more than I wanted to be defined by mine. It seemed a terrible injustice to be exposed in death, to be found out as predictably human, as frail as everyone else.

Tahereh Mafi es una de mis autoras favoritas, su saga de Shatter Me es lo mejor que le ha podido pasar al universo, y la que soporte. He estado leyendo todos sus libros, porque es m
Trigger Warnings: Absent parents, Death of a family member, Depression, Domestic abuse (emotional and physical), Drug and alcohol usage, Drunk driving, Grief, Islamophobia, Racism, Self harm, Suicidal ideation and Suicide attempt

I really l, really wanted to enjoy this but there was just something that I didn’t quite like. It’s really hard to explain because you see how people deal with grief and loss of a loved one and how all of the family members deal with it individually.

It’s really quite dif
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Initial Insult (The Initial Insult, #1)
  • Game Changer
  • Thoughts Alight Poetry
  • Wings of Ebony (Wings of Ebony, #1)
  • The Rest of the Story
  • The Young Elites (The Young Elites, #1)
  • The Screwtape Letters
  • One Great Lie
  • Out of the Silent Planet (The Space Trilogy, #1)
  • Bone Crier's Moon (Bone Grace, #1)
  • The Republic
  • The Hunter (Boston Belles, #1)
  • Slow Brewing Tea (Slow Brewing Tea Series)
  • The Prince and the Dressmaker
  • Dear Martin (Dear Martin, #1)
  • The Poet X
  • The Legend of Korra: Ruins of the Empire, Part One (Ruins of the Empire, #1)
  • Hello, Cruel Heart
See similar books…
Tahereh Mafi is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Shatter Me series. She was born in a small city somewhere in Connecticut and currently resides in Santa Monica, California with her husband, fellow author Ransom Riggs. She can usually be found over-caffeinated and stuck in a book. Shatter Me is her first series, with television rights optioned by ABC Signature Studios; Fur ...more

Articles featuring this book

  As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
63 likes · 12 comments
“My sadness had made me noteworthy. Beautiful. Had imbued in me a kind of dignity, a weight I could not uncarry.” 9 likes
“I looked up then, searched the sky. When I found the moon, I found God, when I saw the stars, I saw God, when I let myself be inhaled by the vast, expanding universe, I understood God the way Seneca once did– God is everything one sees and everything one does not see.” 4 likes
More quotes…