Morning my lovelies. I hope you’re all doing well. Today I’ve got a review for you of The Name of Red by Beena Khan, a wonderful thought provoking, heart wrenching and poignant tale of friendship, love, loss, heartbreak and healing….
Two strangers on the same path.
They will be each other’s salvation.
On a rainy, winter night, a mysterious woman in a red dress seeking shelter comes inside the restaurant Kabir was busy working in —primarily the bar— and night after night, drink after drink, she comes back to the same spot. That is where he sees her for the first time.
Hundreds of patrons around her try to speak with her daily, but she dismisses them. It appears she wants to remain in a blissful peace alone with her booze and books. After seeing the mysterious woman reading a book, and because of his shy nature, Kabir gains entrance into her life by anonymously leaving books with notes for her.
The Name of Red is the story of two strangers, two different personalities who meet on a winter, rainy night who challenge each other. They have a connection which blossoms into a friendship due to their fondness of books. But they both have secrets that can bind them together or threaten their newfound relationship forever.
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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.
about the author
Beena Khan is a Literary Fiction Novelist and Poetess. She writes literary fiction and edgy, contemporary romance. She lives in a suburb in Queens, New York in her apartment. She is 27 years old and from Azad Kashmir, Pakistan. She’s an immigrant who moved to New York when she was five years old. She currently holds a Masters Degree in Developmental Psychology from Cuny School of Professional Sciences. She enjoys reading, writing, and netflixing. She published her first book, the Name of Red when she was 26.
The Name of Red is her debut novel. Released May 15 2020.
The Weight of Skin, the duet novel To The Name of Red is available for pre-order. Release date July 15 2020.
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Thanks so much to Beena and the publisher for sending me a copy of the book in return for an honest review. All views and opinions are my own.
Have a wonderful day lovelies.