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Red #1

The Name of Red

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The woman in red has a secret admirer.
A second at love means confessing your secrets to a stranger.

Two strangers on the same path.
It was a rainy, winter night when Kabir saw her for the first time.
A mysterious woman in a red dress seeking shelter came inside my bar.
Night after night, drink after drink, she comes back to the same spot.
Hundreds of men try to speak with her daily, but she dismisses them.
She’s always reading, always surrounded by books and booze.
He didn’t want to disturb her peace.
And, he didn’t want to be her next reject.
So, he decided to leave her books anonymously with notes.
Just as he was about to put another, a voice behind him says,
"So you're the one leaving me books?"

314 pages, Paperback

Published May 15, 2020

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About the author

Beena Khan

40 books978 followers
Beena Khan is a storyteller that brings grim fairytales, myths, and legends to life. She writes crime and contemporary books. Her books are thrilling, painful, dangerous, emotional, and raw.

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Community Reviews

5 stars
84 (35%)
4 stars
81 (34%)
3 stars
47 (20%)
2 stars
13 (5%)
1 star
9 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 160 reviews
Profile Image for Yeasmin Alo .
190 reviews292 followers
September 18, 2020
*Copy kindly provided by the author in exchange of an honest review*

It was a cute little slow burn romance

I was looking for a quick easy breather book, then this book came up.

It was super sweet Love at first sight romance novel

How Kabir (H) got Red(h) into talking to him for the first time was just plain cute and Dreamy 😍
And their first kiss!! It was so beautiful !! It surly gave me 🦋

Some of the tactics of Red was annoying me a lot but Kabir is a gem and obviously you know my drill
If the male lead is fine then the book is fine
and In this case the male lead was fineeeeee.

If you guys ask me to describe him in one word then I would say "Warm" .
Without any doubt My loyalty lies with those fiery Alpha males.
But who can deny a sweet warm hug ?
Yes that sweet warm hug was Kabir.

I wish the ending was different tho 😐 and also the character development of Red was not as good as I would want it to be .
All in all as a Debut Novel it was pretty good one ❤
Profile Image for Beena Khan.
Author 40 books978 followers
August 17, 2022

“I've escaped death twice now.”
“There’s a reason you survived.”
 “And what is that?” She laughed bitterly. “To waste my life drinking booze?”
“So, you can come into my life."

This is an unconventional love story/women's fiction. RELEASED TODAY MAY 15 2020 on Amazon and Barnes & Nobles. Kindle and paperback format available on Amazon. Paperback and hardcover format available on BN. The book is now on Kindle Unlimited.

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/3exWZlm
Barnes & Nobles Link : https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w?ean=...

Reasons to read TNOR :
1. Cue in mystery girl coming to restaurant/bar
2. Shy guy leaves mystery girl books anonymously
3. Characters are book lovers
4. Strong female and male friendships
5. Tackles addiction, gender norms, and mental illness
6. #OwnVoices Multiculturalism
7. Literary writing
8. On Kindle Unlimited.
9. Can be read as a standalone
10. Probably will make you cry.

** Update 08/22/20
An updated version that is revised and edited has been posted on the websites again.

P.S.S On popular demand, here is the list of the books mentioned and loved in TNOR. Happy reading.

1. The Namesake
2. The Mist
2. The Reader
3. P.S. I Like You
4. You
5. An Anonymous Girl
6. Every Day
8. Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood
9. The Forty Rules of Love
10.Bad Feminist
11. The Essential Rumi
12 Milk and Honey
13.The Great Gatsby
14.A Woman Is No Man
15. The Duchess
16. White Teeth
17. Brave New World
18. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
19. The Hating Game
20. Gone Girl
21. The Alchemist
22. The Thirteenth Tale
23. Like Water for Chocolate
24. The Gaze
June 9, 2021
The Name of Red follows the lives of Kabir and Red after a bad bout of rain and a shared love of books throws their lives together.

I want to start by highlighting how in love I am with Kabir. He is the sweetest most gentle character. I love the characterisation that Beena Khan created in him. I would have enjoyed learning more about him and delving more into his story. Unfortunately I didn’t get the same connection with Red. In fact, I really wasn’t a fan of Red and I therefore did not route for their relationship.

This book definitely hit a very personal note for me at times. The first and last chapters were enjoyable, enticing and poignant. But the middle felt repetitive and I frequently lost focus. I just didn’t feel enough of a connection to the story, so it took me longer to read than usual. That being said, I read this book during a time when I was really busy and a little under the weather, so my life circumstances may have coloured how I connected with it.

I’ve read a little about the inspiration for this novel and I found that deeply moving. I think this is a good debut novel from a young author, it just wasn’t necessarily for me! I want to thank voracious readers only and the author for allowing me to read a copy of this book and give my personal thoughts.
Profile Image for Tina Loves To Read.
2,460 reviews1 follower
Shelved as 'dnf'
July 8, 2020
This is a romance book, and it is also the first book in the Red series. I could not get into this book, so I ended up DNFing this book at page 100. I won a kindle copy of this book from goodreads giveaway, and this is just how I feel about the book.
Profile Image for Fatima.
133 reviews41 followers
May 12, 2020
From strangers to best friends to companions....

Three friends brought together by....
Pouring rain
Sheer luck
And Boundless pain.....

This book is A Walk to Remember meets The Perks of being a Wallflower meets Kal Ho Na Ho.. It's got it all. Romance. Friendship. Comaraderie. Respect. Pain. Loss. Grief.
And most importantly how to get over it all and leave the past in the past....

"How can you learn to heal if the past is a place you want to stay in?"



"The losses that we had came into our lives so we can find each other and help heal each other..... You were the only goodness left in my life."

The enigmatic and mysterious Red came into the bar one night and stayed. She had a fondness for books and stayed secluded to herself. As a beautiful woman men approached her but she never heeded them much attention until Kabir.
As a character, someone who was very shutoff from the world and a mystery uncovering her curtain of coldness was slow but a life opening experience for Kabir and his friends. But while Red was beautiful and charming and dazzling in her own way she could be vain and selfish and shallow at times too. And sure it could be justified at times because of all she'd suffered but she needed to be more grateful for her life and her friends and not take them for granted.


He looked at the beautiful disaster in front of him.

I really liked Kabir's character. He was a very generous and kind person and he reads... I mean come on who doesn't love a guy who reads... His character is understanding and helpful... He can be blunt at times too but chooses to use the careful and kinder approach to life...

"I mean not many people read. Readers are minorities. Special. "

Red and Kabir bonded over their mutual love of books. The way Kabir slowly approached her melted my heart. It was the most adorable thing ever!! That being said in every other aspect he was the yin to her yang, the white to her black... He was shy while she was bold. Kind while she can be cruel at times.

Nadia and Aryan:

"We're brothers. We're bound by loss.

" Why am I always invisible to you? "

Nadia is Kabir's best friend since child hood and Aryan is a bartender....
I felt for Nadia a lot because having unrequited love is never easy... Especially when the person you love in in love with someone else... Right in front of you and no matter what happens you are always invisible to them....
Aryan also has his share of tragedy but doesn't let any of that faze him and has a cheerful out look on life....

Overall the book is about second chances and second loves and the power of forgiveness and letting go and moving on...

I received an ARC from the author. The review is my own and unbiased.
Profile Image for Kelly Miller.
Author 9 books278 followers
April 26, 2021
The Name of Red is a slow burn romance and interesting character study of Elif and Kabir, who each have painful pasts that shape their behavior. The mystery of Elif's past is revealed much more slowly. With Elif's actions bordering on cruelty at times, Kabir is the far more sympathetic character and as I read, I wondered whether Kabir would be helped or destroyed by Elif. It was an engaging read.
Profile Image for Maxine (Booklover Catlady).
1,305 reviews1,235 followers
April 28, 2023
What an outstanding novel. I read this in the early hours of the morning and was finished in just 3. It's a book that really surprised me, drew me in and didn't let go. Beautifully written and surprising in it's ability to have you truly lost in the story.

A beautiful woman enters a bar, alone and sits and reads a book. Stunning in a red dress, the eyes of every man on her. She is oblivious as she drinks alone and turns the pages of her book. Night after night, the same. Who is this mysterious woman? Why does she come alone? Why read in a bar? Why does she look so sad?

One particular man is drawn to "Red" in a powerful way and through the love of books connections are made. Book lovers will adore this book and keep your "to-read" list ready as very cleverly throughout the novel the author lets us know what books she reads and why she likes them, lots of good recommendations in other words.

A small cast of characters come into her life and we hear from her own voice and that of her admirer, it's done very well getting both perspectives of their thoughts and feelings. It's a story that unravels at a steady pace, not a moment of boredom, I was well hooked. The author reveals small aspects at perfect intervals and we hold on desperate to know the whole truth. I wasn't even sure how much would be revealed.

The ending..OMG..I did NOT expect that nor the reveal leading up to it. Totally blindsided by a very clever writer. Cultures blend, emotions flow and portrayal of real human emotion across the board is shared from the pages. It's a powerful and moving novel. This was NOTHING I expected and exceeded all expectations. Highly recommended, you won't be able to put it down.

I am keen to read Red Book II now which is out on Amazon! Thank you to NetGalley and the Publisher/Author for my copy. All my reviews are totally unbiased.
Profile Image for Hannah.
238 reviews59 followers
May 15, 2020
2 Stars - Fine book

Note: I received an ARC of the book in exchange for an honest review.

This book is the author Beena Khan’s debut novel and overall, it’s a good attempt at a first novel. We follow the story of the heroine nicknamed “Red” for the striking color of her dress she wears when we first meet her. Happenstance brings her into the restaurant of Kabir, a sensitive and pragmatic man. We follow their friendship and love for one another over the course of the book culminating in an event that I can honestly say I did not see coming.

Khan’s descriptive writing immediately caught my attention and sucked me in to the story. The very first scene of the book and how Khan creates it is beautiful and I can picture it so well. It’s truly a great start to the story. Red’s entrance into the restaurant reminds me of the commercial with for the Coco Mademoiselle Chanel perfume that stars Keira Knightley. Her entrance is very much all eyes on her and her red dress.

I also appreciate that Red and Kabir’s relationship starts to form over books. Books in which books have a pivotal role are near and dear to my heart. The two main characters leave and share books with one another and exchange stories and it’s honestly my idea of an ideal relationship of any kind. In reading this book I’ve learned of some books I hadn’t heard of that I’m interested to check out. I also recognized titles that I loved.

While there is so much potential and there is good description there are elements that make it only a 2-star book in my opinion. On more a stylistic note, there is quite a bit of repetition with certain concepts, scenes, and character’s thoughts. I felt some of it could be refined a bit better to have a bigger impact. Additionally, there are some awkward sentences that don’t make sense either grammatically or structurally (or both). That took away from the overall immersion into the book.

One particular story line that I did not appreciate because I don’t think it added anything to the plot overall, was the Aryan’s interactions with ICE. There was so much going on when that initially came up that it felt like a different book. Also, that storyline was so miniscule (only a few pages) that it almost felt out of place.

Lastly, I will also say that at a certain point the book felt like tragedy porn. So many of the characters have so much past trauma and that’s compounded by things currently going on in their lives. It was chaotic and too much. By the time we found out . I always am cautious when people write about trauma’s because that’s the population I work with every day; people who have historical trauma, trauma related to being a refugee/immigrant, survivor of IPV or sexual assault, loss of family, disease, alcohol/drug addiction etc. Of course, people can have multiple tragedies, but in the case of this book it felt like the characters (but especially Red) had multiple tragedies because it made her look more vulnerable and sadder rather than making her a more compelling character. It also felt like Kabir was going to try and rescue her or save her from her traumas and tragedies, which is just not a safe message to send out.

Beena Khan’s debut novel is a valiant effort and she is a writer with a lot of potential. I will be interested to see what she writes in the future.
Profile Image for ✨ Lucy ✨.
327 reviews84 followers
October 31, 2020
“He brought up her old scars again, and now he couldn’t leave them on the shelf like books to gather dust.”

This is the first time I read anything about this author, and I have to say I enjoyed it.

It was a quick , but at the same time intense reading.

We can see the journey of two broken people , who recognized the same pain in each other souls .

It wasn't easy , there were so much emotions and feelings. I just loved it.

“The losses that we had came into our lives so we can find each other and help heal each other... you were the only goodness left in my life.”

I liked how faith played a really big part in their story. It was definitely love at first sign, they couldn't help it . The attraction and the chemistry was palpable . I liked how you can really see and understand the real pain the characters went through. It was like they saved each other , like it was mean to be.

“I've escaped death twice now.
There’s a reason you survived.
And what is that? She laughed bitterly. To waste my life drinking booze?
So, you can come into my life.”

This story kept me up until I was able to finish it, I literally couldn't put it down . As a debut novel it was well written , I sincerely recommend this beautiful and emotional story.
I gave it 4 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I hope you'll enjoy it like I did.


Profile Image for Katia.
64 reviews13 followers
May 14, 2020
Such a unique romance story filled with friendship and heartbreak. We see the story of two people coming together after going through a lot of pain separately. Each character was so deeply flawed and beautiful at the same time. I loved the theme of second chances-- how they're worth chasing after even if they aren't perfect-- while at the same time I love how real this book was in showing that some pain doesn't ever fully go away even when someone's around to make it better. It's a real love story.
2 reviews1 follower
May 10, 2020
I loved it. You have to read until the end. The storyline is captivating and it really makes you feel like you know “Red” personally. The details were so point and made everything so easy to visualize. You feel like you’re a bystander within the story. Highly recommend!
Profile Image for Katelynne.
788 reviews11 followers
June 26, 2020
I greatly enjoyed this debut novel! It was angsty and full of heartfelt emotion, more of a drama than a romance. Red is a character I will always remember, and Kabir is an angel. I look forward to part two of this duology. Look for my full review at bitchbookshelf.com on July 2!
Profile Image for Cristina.
513 reviews385 followers
September 9, 2020
Copy kindly provided by the author in exchange on an honest review.

I started this book last night with the intention or reading a few pages before bed. Big mistake! This book absolutely consumed me. Before I knew it, I was 17% done with it. And as soon as I could figure things out, I was 58% in...

The book is about two people who find each other due to faith. At least, this was my impression. The story behind each main character was so complex and well built... I loved both Kabir and Red even though Red had a slight issue with the alcohol. It was understandable though, considering the life she had. Lucky for her, life gave her a new chance.

I think it was one of the most catching books I’ve read this year. I mean 🙈 I read it even at work... and this says something. The curiosity this book inspired in me was so high, I just needed to know where the storyline leads. And the beginning... all those books. I think that’s where I was hooked. As an avid reader, reading about books is the best way to catch my attention. Especially when the books mentioned where mostly read by me already.

So yeah, I loved this book even though the ending killed me... knowing how the books is going to end made me so sad. But no matter what, the book was great. And I would gladly read it again. Because not many books succeed to touch my heart, as this one managed to do it.

Favorite quotes:
“My turn. What is one thing you don’t like about society?” Kabir asked.
Red paused while drinking. “When certain people believe that women are a gift to them, even though we are the life givers.”
“Women are the birthers, they give life but men like you live, you give life another meaning.”
Profile Image for ⋆Lara⋆.
109 reviews45 followers
September 26, 2020
DNF at 80%

I received an ARC copy from the author for an honest review and this is going to be as honest as I can get. Prepare yourself for a rant. *spoiler alert*

I'm breaking one of my own rules and giving this book one star because honestly, it deserves this.

What I had thought I would get when I read the blurb- A sweet little CR with a hint of suspense.

What I got?- A sob story of a self destructive heroine who was, for the lack of a better word-annoying in the least.

The whole story revolves around Red who has experienced tragedy in the past... Well, come to think of it, almost all the characters have sobby stories. I don't mind a good dose of angst but I mostly felt like a third party witnessing something that is supposed to be sad but I couldn't actually sympathise with their past.

The heroine makes bad decisions on top of bad decisions throughout the book (as far as I read it, anyway). The hero is a pushover. He lets her walk over him every chance he gets. (off the mark but if you really want to know a good and shy Muslim hero - Khalid from Ayesha at last was the best).

The thing that annoyed me the most was probably the portrayal of the Muslim characters in the book. The characters treat Islam like an afterthought in the book when in reality it is very different. Islam is much more than offering prayer thrice a day (Kabir misses his two, don't know why?) and giving zakat. He left a noble profession of a doctor and now owns a bar and practice pre-marital sex, which is fine by me. But then, the attempt to justify what a good person he is by giving the example of Islam and how he's going to heaven and all that shit was outrageous.

It also seemed funny to me that the heroine seemed to recite a few hadeeth (anecdotes of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H)) but doesn't actually follow through with his teachings. It was honestly exhausting. I'm not here to judge how good are you as a Muslim but I would expect the author to explain the bad decisions of the characters through snippets of Islam. It gives a bad message to everybody reading this thing. I'm quite upset about this.

Lastly, and most importantly - the writing. It was completely wooden. I couldn't connect with the charters no matter how hard I tried and I tried really hard. It was what I said it was - a boring sob story.
Profile Image for Clara (clarylovesbooks).
597 reviews78 followers
September 15, 2020
*I received an ARC of the book in exhange of an honest review*

The Middle Eastern representation was definitely this book strongest point. Plus, it was a super quick read and the writing style was simple but enjoyable.

Kalib and Red are attracted to each other immediately, and maybe that was the reason why I could not fully enjoy this story, as I'm not a fan of the insta-love trope.

There are cute moments and I love how respectful Kalib is towards Red, but i thought that the story was very cliché and I was not invested in the characters' lives.

I didn't feel warm inside or any of the things i expect to feel when reading a romance, and I couldn't connect with the characters. It was an okay romance, and I'm sure many readers would enjoy it, but it wasn't my cup of tea.
Profile Image for Becca.
132 reviews4 followers
May 15, 2020
SOLID 3.5***

The book will make you feel Happy, Angry, Frustrated and Sad.

I really appreciate what Beena did with all the Characters, even though it was mainly about Kabir and Red we get to understand the people that were around them. Every character had their own story to tell in this book and the author executed it well.

I hated how the heroine was secretly crying for help and nobody could even figure out to lend her a hand sooner than later...

𝐖𝐨𝐫𝐝𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐝𝐞𝐬𝐜𝐫𝐢𝐛𝐞 𝐑𝐞𝐝
Beautiful, Moody,Selfish, Funny

𝐖𝐨𝐫𝐝𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐝𝐞𝐬𝐜𝐫𝐢𝐛𝐞 𝐊𝐚𝐛𝐢𝐫
Introverted (for someone that sure own a night club), Polite, Kind, Generous, Easy going

𝗘𝗻𝗷𝗼𝗺���𝗻𝘁: 3.5/5
𝗪𝗿𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗦𝘁𝘆𝗹𝗲: 3/5
𝗦𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗹𝗶𝗻𝗲: 4/5
𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗮𝗰𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗗𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹𝗼𝗽𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁: 4/5
𝗛𝗲𝗿𝗼: 3.5/5
𝗛𝗲𝗿𝗼𝗶𝗻𝗲: 2.5/5
𝗖𝗵𝗲𝗺𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗿𝘆: 3/5
𝗥𝗼𝗺𝗮𝗻𝗰𝗲: 2/5
𝗗𝗮𝗿𝗸𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗟𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹:0/5
𝗣𝗢𝗩: Third person
𝗧𝗿𝗶𝗴𝗴𝗲𝗿𝘀: Alcoholism, Sexual Assualt

I received an advance copy from the author for an honest review
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Jessica Mulcrone.
21 reviews1 follower
May 17, 2020
The Name of Red is an intense, sexy read that drew me in immediately and didn't let go. It's descriptive and immersive, but is also written in a way that's straightforward enough to pick up and read a chapter of when you have a chance without loosing the thread. I did that for the first few chapters and then read all of the rest in one day because I became so intrigued. The growing sexual tension between characters, the secrets slowly unfolding, and the emotional depth of the relationships between characters both romantic and not, were individually each enough to make me want to keep reading. I think the aspect that gripped me the most was the theme of how to move on when you've experienced trauma and lost your trust in the world or yourself. It was beautiful watching the desire to connect break through the darkest of self-doubt in whatever way it could. While reading I felt like I was in the bar Ferdaus, and wanted to be friends with characters inhabiting it, troubled as they might be. There was something very honest about aspects of the main love story, and it was cool to see that honesty mixed with the drama of the plot. I can tell these characters will stay with me, which is a mark of a story well told. 

The main snag for me was a lot of repetition. It did help keep the storyline very clear, but at times felt like it bogged things down. There was also something upsetting about the savior/ mess dynamics happening in the story, and feeling those were glorified. As long as you are willing to take some things with a grain of salt and can breeze over some repetition, this unique romance is absolutely worth the read! 
Profile Image for Jordan.
106 reviews45 followers
August 17, 2020
Although The Name of Red took me a little while to read, I did enjoy it. It was slow paced and was character and dialogue driven. The characters were unique, and I loved their different backgrounds and ethnicities. It got better near the end because of the plot twist. I wish there would have been more details to the last chapter.
I’m giving this book 3.5 stars, but rounding it up to 4 stars.
Profile Image for Sophia I.
132 reviews34 followers
May 15, 2020
I want to thank the author, Beena Khan, for providing me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

“He brought up her old scars again, and now he couldn’t leave them on the shelf like books to gather dust.”

The Name of Red is a slow burn romance that will make your heart sing and add Kabir to the list of your book boyfriends.

Me: “The perfect man doesn’t exist.”
Kabir: “Hold my beer.”

I was around the 75% mark when I realised that I was essentially reading a Nicholas Sparks novel. Red, our heroine, and Kabir, our love interest, teasingly play a game of will-they-won’t-they? that, at times, will keep you at the edge of your seat, but, at other times, will frustrate you to no end because you just need to know. And when you find out, a spanner is thrown in the works that will have you glaring at your screen, but, ultimately, leave you bittersweet.

By the end, I, also, fell in love with Aryan, Kabir’s friend and bartender at the restaurant Kabir owns, and I wanted to know more about what happens to him once the story ends. He’s a tough nut, ultimately practical, down-to-earth, humble and likable with a tragic backstory. I wanted to know even more about him. What happens to him afterwards? Perhaps this could be book two.

My minor complaint is that, though the pacing was brilliant and left me glued to the screen, certain parts could be cut for length and did feel like filler. As well as this, it took a long time to get to the reveal, but the book surprised me by another bonus twist at the end.

The chemistry between Red and Kabir – A Bookworm’s Dream

Get you someone with a large library who’s more than happy to leave you a book every night you frequent their bar. Kabir is pretty much the South Asian version of Obinze from Americanah, so as you can imagine, I, of course, fell in love with him. Who wouldn’t? A dreamy reserved aura, a voracious reader, and a kind, thoughtful and intelligent man. Kabir is, quite literally, perfect. Whereas, Red is outspoken, chaotic, sensual, bold and… sometimes a little cringe. Their friendship is so sweet, their chemistry is undeniable, and it’s endearing how easily Kabir blushes. It did take me a while to warm to Red, and her comparison to Kabir’s childhood friend, Nadia, did set my guard up against Red because I imagined her to be colourist. With Red possessing more Eurocentric features which is described as “classic” good looks and Nadia boasting more traditional South Asian looks, the comparison really irritated me to the point that I thought that only a tragic backstory could slightly mollify me. It was only until a darker skinned woman was complimented that I thought, “Alright, fine… maybe you’re not colourist, but I’m still side-eyeing you for defining Eurocentric features as the standard of beauty.”

Ultimately, I loved Red and Kabir’s story, and you’ll find yourself rooting for the pair.

Addiction, Feminism and Deep Religious Discussions

Both Kabir and Red share a difficult past with Red shouldering a grief so heavy that results in her succumbing to the pleasures of drinking to numb the pain. I thought it was especially important to explore this aspect. Of course, I know some Muslims do drink, but I thought it was interesting to navigate alcohol addiction and its effects. What I really loved about this book are the fascinating conversations Red and Kabir have on alcoholism, feminism and what makes a Muslim a ‘Muslim’, and both come away with enlightened perspectives. I didn’t always agree with some of the opinions and the acts indulged in, but I wholly agree that, when casting judgement on our Muslim brothers and sisters and assessing actions, a fine distinction needs to be drawn between the ‘sin’ and the ‘sinner’. It’s lovely how easy it is for Kabir and Red to connect on a deeper level, but also be able to have fun doing it.

“People sin in different ways, but it doesn’t mean they’re evil or corrupt.”


Another brilliant depiction in The Name of Red is that it reminds us that healing isn’t linear, and that when we finally open up about what we’re dealing with, it doesn’t always instantaneously make us feel better. Healing is a long process, sometimes it takes an entire lifetime or a significant chunk of our time, and nor is it a linear process. But it recognises the importance of fully immersing yourself in your emotions, rinsing it out before you can even place a plaster on the scar for your wounds to heal. Each character, Kabir, Red and Aryan, all deal with their own inner emotional turmoil, and all very different, that they have to come to grips with by the end. It moves beyond romance and friendship, and at the core of it, it’s about dealing with our own personal demons.

Overall, I would recommend The Name of Red to anyone who’s a fan of slow burn romances and to readers recovering from grief, loss, trauma and addiction.

Purchase a copy on Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZLC1GF

Read more on my blog: https://sophiaismaa.wordpress.com/202...
Profile Image for Ruth Harwood.
527 reviews9 followers
May 11, 2020
This is a book full of intrigue and exploration - we're all different, in our passions, outlook, loves and hates, and these are captured well here, with great skill and planning. The hints and observations of life, the pains and joys of life are all explored in this fantastic book, giving the reader an insight into the human psyche. I love the fact that this is centred around books and their power to influence our lives - I even ordered a copy of 'Brave New World', a book I've been pondering but not quite arrived at, simply because the characters mentioned it - I loved that a book could inspire me to decide to read another book simply by mentioning it! There are a few little editing mistakes, though I'm sure they've been ironed out, and the writing is interesting, bringing the content to life.
I'd recommend this to others for sure - it's not my usual genre - I'm more of a historical/fantasy/sci-fi fan myself, but the occasional break from the norm is no problem when you emmerse yourself in the book you're reading. Thanks for such a magnificent read xx
Profile Image for M.E. Aster.
Author 3 books43 followers
July 27, 2022
The Name of Red was a wonderful read that drew me in from the first page.

Red is a great heroine. She’s outgoing and loud, but also insightful and clever. She masks her hurt behind an uncaring veneer but inside she’s hiding a lifetime of pain that she’s struggling to deal with. In a lot of ways I related to her, and my curiosity about her story had me turning pages even when I knew I should put the book down for the day.

Then she meets Kabir, the shy bar owner that immediately falls for her even though she won’t let anyone in. He’s nursing his own wounds, but he can’t deny that he wants to get to know Red better. He manages to pique her interest when she discovers his shared love of books. This was one of my favorite aspects of their relationship. Seeing them flirt through books was adorable!

As the book continued it deals with many heavy themes like loss, religion, addiction, and death. I was very surprised with how it ended (which I won’t hint at) but I loved it too. It definitely wasn’t what I thought would happen but it made the book even more realistic in my opinion.

A few moments did bother me since both Kabir and Red seemed to have very traditionally defined ideas of gender such as “men should be alpha” or “females shouldn’t dress that way if they aren’t asking for attention” but for this story it did work. They were both raised very religiously (although the exact religion slips my mind) and it made sense for them to think that way. It just had me bristling at times but it was a minor thing.

Overall I really enjoyed this book. It had the perfect amount of romance, intrigue, mystery, and sadness. I highly recommend this to any fans of romantic literature.
Profile Image for Gracie.
177 reviews78 followers
May 15, 2020
Considering this is Beena’s debut novel, I was amazed at how good this book was!
Aside from a few grammatical errors - which never entirely took me out of the story - it was an outstanding read.
I loved the character growth and development every one of the characters got.

Good job, Beena!!

* I received an advanced copy of this book. This is my honest opinion *
Profile Image for Vera Neves (Sinfonia dos Livros).
653 reviews42 followers
November 8, 2020
When I received the author's request to read this book, I was not expecting to find what I found in this story. I've read so many books, but I'm always afraid to read something by an author I don't know, I have to admit. However, I didn't even think twice when I replied that I was more than interested in being able to satisfy her request made wit such humble and sincere way. Thank you Beena, for trusting me with your story.

This book brings us the story of (un) love between Red, the famous woman in red who, in the middle of the storm, enters a cafe restaurant, drenched and without even an overcoat, dress or umbrella, and Kabir, the owner of the same cafe restaurant, that is immediately stunned by Red.
As we will realize when reading the book, that the name Red is just a nickname that people in the restaurant have given her since she does not speak to anyone, does not accept approaches from anyone and does not open up with anyone. The only person who catches a few words with her is the bartender who lets herself be in her place and fills the glasses she empties.
Everyone notices that she enters, every day after that first one, always sits in the same place, orders drinks and gets lost among the pages of the books that she takes with her every night. It is in this detail that Kabir notices and, in a way of approaching her, every night, without ever saying who he is, he leaves her a different book with a personal note for her.
It is this kind of game that will attract Red's attention and that will bring her closer to both Kabir and all the people who fill his circle of personal friends.
Throughout the book we tend to think that Red, whose real name is Elif, is something selfish and self-centered, at least I did. i really didn't like how Kabir seemed to levitate around her and she continued to act as if she didn't notice anything that came from him except the books he gave her, the drunkenness she could have in his bar and in the friendship that he gave her whenever she needed.
It was necessary to have access to many dark thoughts of Elif and a lot of insistence from Kabir for her to open up sincerely to him, to realize that Elif caries in his twenty-nine years, a lot of pain and many personal and psychological traumas. In addition to her books, it seemed that she just wanted to kill herself with drinking. She got drunk every night, and at one point Kabir had to limit the number of drinks he was served.
However, from the time that Elif opens her past to Kabir, all the chapters of the book bring us new pains and more ways of seeing that, we often look at people and not always what we see on the outside is what takes place inside these same people. There are people who, like Elif, suffer and suffer and still suffer more and that we do not know of it. People like Elif who have been happy all their lives but who, by a small chance of fate or misfortune, see their lives destroyed and their dreams and plans for a bright and happy future, completely ripped apart.
Elif, until the end of the book teaches us that we cannot repair wounds alone and a broken heart needs someone else to get together and heal.

This was a story that I found strange at first, because of the names of the characters and their habits and way of acting, and then became embedded in my heart and mind. Complex characters but with huge hearts despite being broken. Intense feelings but completely sincere and devoid of falsehood. A kind of "What you see is what you get". Most of the time we have an idea that the characters are too closed in on themselves, but what we see is that they are too sensitive to even talk about their past. Because the pain is so big that even by talking about it might destroy their strenght and soul.
Each of the characters, in addition to Elif, carries pasts full of losses and painful happenings.

Honestly, I think it's a story that everyone should read.
Profile Image for Angie McGuire.
1,108 reviews10 followers
May 12, 2020
This story isn't what I expected... At all. It's not my normal genre, and the story line we out of my zone.
These characters each had their own story, but it took a while to figure out what those purposes were. And the epilogue? This unconventional book is worth reading, but if you are looking for a normal type of book with love.... I voluntarily reviewed this book from the author.
Profile Image for Deanaera writes....
84 reviews1 follower
May 19, 2021
I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Who are you Beena Khan?
Because I am truly caught by this intriguingly philosophical read with undertones of societal and religious commentary that doesn't avoid the grittiness of reality.

A story of two broken people finding their way - with each other, to each other, through each other. It was a story that breaks your heart and rebuilds - it shows you the depth of love and its many shadowed faces.

My heart is still gripped in it's wake...
I know there were some language and grammar issues with this novel that I didn't love but by the end I was just completely lost in the experience. 

An experience truly reminiscent of some of the better poignant anime movies...like "The Wind Rises". An honest truth - I would love to see this book in that medium, after reading it, it feels as if it would be so perfectly suited.

So I ask again, Who are you, Beena Khan? Because I am truly hooked.

Spoilers ahead

Read The Complete Review>

~ Deanaera's Bloggy Book Bites

Profile Image for Melina Lobo.
658 reviews81 followers
July 16, 2020
He never knew what it was like to feel breathless until he met her.
When a mysterious beautiful young woman enters a bar in a red dress, she makes heads turn and hearts stop.
And just like everyone else, Kabir wants to get to know her, who she us, where she's from, why was she sitting at the bar reading a book?
So, he comes up with a plan to get to know her through books.
Two strangers find each other during their toughest of times, but will they be able to save each other?
The Name of Red is a fictional romance novel by Veena Khan.
The characters are broken in their own way, both dealing with tragedies in their past so they find comfortwith each other.
'Red' has difficulty in letting people in, and even though it's potrayed as being selfish she is only that way because of her past.
Kabir is kind hearted and looks out for her even though she's a mess at times and never oversteps his boundaries even when he has the chance to.
I love that they bonded over books and that their relationship was based on genuine shared interests rather than just physical attraction.
They get to know the other's deepest secrets so you know the connection is true because it's not easy for people who have been through a lot to open up about their life story.
Although I loved the concept of the story and the plot, the ending was a bit cliché for me just because I've read so many books that have the same or similar.
Overall, a good book for romance lovers.
Rated 8.5/10
Melina L.
Profile Image for Ash ~ bookmaniac~.
278 reviews53 followers
October 6, 2020

This is Beena Khan's debut novel and the first book in the Red series.
It's a sweet slow romance novel where strangers turn into friends and then companions. this book has angst and It kind off has more drama than romance.
Red and Kabir bonded over their love for books which is so awwworthy( i don't think it's an actual word,anyways) and it melted my heart.

My favourite is Kabir, he is so kind, understanding, helpful and above all he reads, a guy who loves to reads automatically grabs a place in my good list....duh..
Red and kabir were perfect for one another,they completed each other, made each other whole, he was like the ping to her pong....he is shy and sensitive while Red is more straightforward and can be rude at times. They are like cheese and macroni, just perfect.Period.

this book was not what i expected it to be and if you want to read a unconventional love story u are going to like it

* ARC provided by the author for honest review*
July 2, 2020
This is a fantastic debut novel from Khan, touching on so many thought provoking aspects. From the blurb you can be led to believe this is a standard romance, but it’s so much more than that.

A beautiful and mysterious woman walks into the bar one night and attracts the attention of every male in there. But she is too engrossed in her drink and her books and pays attention to no-one. Night after night, she keeps coming back and Kabir (who works there) is intrigued. Shy but curious, he decides the best way to get to know her is by leaving her a new book with anonymous notes.

Eventually she finds out who it is and they start to build a friendship. But they both have their own emotional scars from the past, from which they. both need to heal. As their friendship develops, they start opening up to one another and revealing the secrets they keep hidden. But can they really help each other?

The Name of Red is beautifully written, full of mystery and intrigue and had me hooked from the first chapter. Khan’s writing is so beautifully descriptive that you can literally see the first chapter playing out in your mind as if watching it on screen, a fabulous opening to this wonderful book.

You can’t help but warm to the characters who, through their experiences, are relatable. Red is quite standoffish at first but you can’t help but be intrigued by her; and as you get to know more and more about her, the reasons become clear. Kabir is amazing. A shy and true gentleman, but with another side to him that is rarely seen. He captures the eye of women, just as much as Red with the men, successful, handsome and caring, he comes across as a perfect man. I also loved Aryan, another character with his own difficulties and past, he’s the perfect barman and a wonderful friend.

I absolutely adored the way they meet and that their love of books draws them to each other. Any book lover will be warmed by this. Their passion for books and stories shines through, and I love the developments that are made to the restaurant to reflect this. So many amazing books are mentioned and discussed by the characters, you will surely come away with at least one new book that you’ll add to your TBR list!

There are so many secrets that unravel throughout this book, and I can’t say anything as I don’t want to spoil them, But they are truly thought provoking and heart wrenching. The two main characters have been through so much and even when they think they know each other, there is more to come. I was shocked and saddened by some of the revelations, and just wanted the best for the characters.

I didn’t expect the ending at all! Again, I’m not going to say much but make sure you read this to the end. Khan covers some hard hitting subjects in this book ~ trauma, loss, addiction but in a sensitive way that really makes you think. It makes you realise that healing isn’t always easy, and doesn’t always happen like a fairy tale.

Overall, this was a fantastic and compelling debut by Khan and I’m excited to see what her next book brings us. If you’re looking for your next read that will give you all the feels and stay with you long after you’ve finished, then this is for you! Highly recommended by me.
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