By S.K. Ali

Salaam Reads/Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers



ThemesLove and Romance

Age / Grade 14-18 / Grades 9+

Content Islamophobia Multiple Sclerosis Sex Positivity Xenophobia

In this sequel to Love from A to Z, Adam is in Doha, Qatar, trying to make being an artist work and is worried about where his next paycheck will come from. Zayneb is in Chicago, where school and extracurricular stresses are piling on top of a terrible frenemy situation, making her miserable.

Adam and Zayneb get the chance to spend Thanksgiving week on the Umrah, a pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, in Saudi Arabia. Adam is excited; it’s the reboot he needs. Zayneb, having envisioned another kind of vacation, eventually gets on board with a spiritual reset too. After so much time apart, they can’t wait to spend time together.

But the trip is nothing like what they expect, from the appearance of Adam’s former love interest in their traveling group to the anxiety gripping Zayneb when she’s supposed to be “spiritual.” As one wedge after another drives them apart while they make their way through rites in the holy city, Adam and Zayneb start to wonder: was their meeting just an oddity after all? Or can their love transcend everything else like the greatest marvels of the world?