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American Betiya by Anuradha D. Rajurkar
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American Betiya by Anuradha D. Rajurkar
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Mar 09, 2021 | ISBN 9780593207918 | 693 Minutes

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  • Mar 09, 2021 | ISBN 9780593207918 | Young Adult

    693 Minutes

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Praise for American Betiya
A Bank Street College of Education Best Book of 2022
A YALSA Best Best Fiction for Young Adults
A Cosmopolitan Best 100 Books of All Time
A Book Riot best YA Book of 2021
A South Asia Book Award 2022 honoree
A Children’s Cooperative 2022 Best Book of the Year
A 2022 Nerdy Book Club Best Novel Award Winner

“A bold coming-of-age piece that a lot of us, who have had to seamlessly merge two separate identities, can relate to.” –Buzzfeed
American Betiya is a celebration of feminist allyship. Thoughtful and compelling, it is also a valuable conversation starter about cultural identity amid the complexities of sex, love, and respect.” –The Bulletin

“Laser-focused prose will resonate with any teen reader who has been harassed for their brown skin, struggled with first love or borne the pressure of family expectations… impossible to read without tightness in your chest and your heart in your throat.” —BookPage

“Laced with poetic and rich writing, American Betiya candidly captures the heartbreaking impetuousness of that all-consuming first love, the tightrope we walk as we seek to navigate cultural tensions, and, most importantly, the risks we must take to spread our wings and find ourselves.” —Gae Polisner, author of The Memory of Things
“I was immediately captivated by Rani’s unique voice, and her raw sincerity kept me hooked through every step of her journey. This book is overflowing with honesty, and stunningly beautiful.” —Akemi Dawn Bowman, award-winning author of Starfish

American Betiya is about Rani, an Indian American teen with a photographer’s eye and dreams of medical school who experiences first love with a white American boy against her family’s traditions. Beautifully written, this story tackles racism, identity, and learning what you really want.” –Rajani LaRocca, author of Red, White, and Whole

“American Betiya explores the passion of teen romance, the steady and supportive (but sometimes overpowering) outpouring of love from family and community, and above all, the importance of learning to take care of oneself. In Rani, Rajurkar paints a tender portrait of a South Asian teen who is navigating boundaries, experimenting with self-expression, and ultimately, garnering the strength to speak up for herself. This gentle story about self-care and self-discovery, lightly sprinkled with humor, will surely be enjoyed by many young readers.” —Padma Venkatraman, Author of The Bridge Home, Winner of the Walter Award 

“American Betiya is a brave, beautiful exploration of identity—those thrust upon us, and those we forge for ourselves.” —Elana K. Arnold, award-winning author of What Girls Are Made Of

American Betiya thoughtfully examines cross-cultural boundaries, first love, the first steps of independence from family, and the power of art to transform and heal. I loved Rani’s fierce, heartfelt, and beautifully told journey.” —Kathleen Glasgow, New York Times bestselling author of Girl in Pieces

“This is a book that doesn’t shy away from risks taken, mistakes made, bridges crossed and broken, boundaries pushed and the understanding that comes from testing love and finding the places where it crumbles and where it holds.” —Nandini Bajpai, author of A Match Made in Mehendi

“A beautiful, nuanced exploration of self-actualization, love, sex, and the complicated intersection of all three. From its witty banter and feminist overtones to its portrayal of the dire consequences of gaslighting and cultural appropriation, I loved every minute of this exquisite story. I can’t wait to read what Anuradha D. Rajurkar writes next!” —Nora Carpenter, award-winning author of The Edge of Anything

“An eye-opening, edgy, emotional exploration of identity, love, family and clashing culture, American Betiya is an unputdownable must-read.” —Liza Wiemer, author of The Assignment

American Betiya is amazing! This glorious book is about finding yourself while trapped between two very different worlds. I loved how Rani was both a strong, independent American girl and also a loving, proud Indian betiya. I can’t say enough good things about this book. It is brilliant! -Ellen Oh, author and co-founder of We Need Diverse Books, for Goodreads’ Incredible YA Reading List
“This heartbreaking love story is a strong debut and an entertaining read. An interracial teen romance that unflinchingly tackles racism and patriarchy.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Rajurkar’s tight prose facilitates a gripping plot.” —Publishers Weekly


Cooperative Children’s Book Center Choices SELECTION 2022

YALSA Best Books for Young Adults SELECTION 2022

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