The youngest of three brothers, K just wants to be an all-American boy-shooting hoops with his buddies and riding his Huffy around the San Fernando Valley. But K understands there's something different about himself, a longing that draws him closer to his friends while making him feel more and more alienated. At home, K must navigate another confusing identity: that of the faithful son of Iranian immigrants struggling to survive in the United States. To make his mother proud, he tries to do well in school and help around the apartment, but he worries he is disappointing her. On Friday nights K dutifully attends prayers at the Mosque with his remote and unknowable Baba, whose love and violence will distort K's understanding of what it means to be a man.
Masterful ... There were moments when I...felt like I could not survive this book. But I did, and now it is one of my favorite books ... The book has a refreshing dearth of simile and metaphor — the poetry is in the things, not like the things ... Khabushani trusts his reader.
Heartbreaking ... Khabushani writes movingly about K’s queer coming-of-age and his burgeoning identity as a writer ... Khabushani provides meaningful historical context for the pain passed down through these generations.