Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Books I've Read: The Authentics
This was one of those books that really wasn't what I expected it to be and it kept surprising me. Which is a good thing!
Daria is an Iranian/American in LA. Her family are deeply entrenched in the Persian community and Daria is proud of her culture, even if it does infuriate her at times. She has a tight-knit group of friends who like to call themselves The Authentics because they see themselves as being true to themselves and authentic while other kids are fake.
And none more fake than Daria's former best-friend, a fellow Persian from the group she likes to refer to as 'The Nose Jobs' because they have had their proud Persian noses fixed to look more American.
Daria's identity is thrown into crisis when she takes a DNA test as part of a science project for school, and discovers she is not in fact the person she has always believed herself to be.
The rest of the book is about Daria uncovering her true identity, coming to terms with it, and realizing that she and her friends are no more authentic than anyone else - everyone wears masks or fakes it in some way or another.
I enjoyed aspects of the book, especially the details about Daria's Persian culture. What I didn't like were the relationships between women. There seemed to be an awful lot of bitchiness and in-fighting and one-upmanship that felt unnecessary.
There was also the requisite love-interest who seemed just a tiny bit unreal to me. A bad boy who wasn't really that bad, just misunderstood...
So while I didn't love this story - to be honest, I didn't like Daria as much as I wanted to - it's certainly interesting and engaging enough to keep you reading to the end. And sometimes that's enough.
The Authentics is a fresh, funny, and insightful novel about culture, love, and family—the kind we are born into and the ones we create.
Daria Esfandyar is Iranian-American and proud of her heritage, unlike some of the “Nose Jobs” in the clique led by her former best friend, Heidi Javadi. Daria and her friends call themselves the Authentics, because they pride themselves on always keeping it real.
But in the course of researching a school project, Daria learns something shocking about her past, which launches her on a journey of self-discovery. It seems everyone is keeping secrets. And it’s getting harder to know who she even is any longer.
With infighting among the Authentics, her mother planning an over-the-top sweet sixteen party, and a romance that should be totally off limits, Daria doesn’t have time for this identity crisis. As everything in her life is spinning out of control—can she figure out how to stay true to herself?