Sway with Me (Hardcover)
Arsalan has learned everything he knows from Nana, his 100-year-old great-grandfather. This includes the fact that when Nana dies, Arsalan will be completely alone in the world, except for his estranged and abusive father. So he turns to Beenish, the step-daughter of a prominent matchmaker, to find him a future life partner. Beenish’s request in return? That Arsalan help her ruin her older sister’s wedding with a spectacular dance she’s been forbidden to perform.
Despite knowing as little about dancing as he does about girls, Arsalan wades into Beenish’s chaotic world to discover friends and family he never expected. And though Arsalan’s old-school manners and Beenish’s take-no-prisoners attitude clash every minute, they find themselves getting closer and closer—literally. All that’s left to realize is that the thing they both really want is each other, if only they can get in step.
At turns laugh-out-loud funny, poignant, and sincerely heartfelt, Sway With Me is a coming-of-age story for anyone trying to find their place in the world.
"Syed Masood is my favorite YA author, and this story and these characters are exactly why. Rich with culture, touched with hilarity, immersed in heart, Sway with Me made me laugh one moment and wipe tears from my cheeks in the very next. Masood is an auto-buy for me."—Erin Hahn, author of More Than Maybe and Never Saw You Coming
"Earnest, heartfelt, and laugh-out-loud charming, Sway with Me is a book that will warm your heart in all the best places. A must-read for anyone who loves found families and finding love in unexpectedly perfect places."—Emma Lord, author of Tweet Cute
"Sway with Me is as big-hearted and hilarious as it is masterfully affecting. Arsalan is a loyal old soul who will steal your heart from page one as his lonely world becomes filled with found family, first love, and dance. Nothing short of magnificent."—Nina Moreno, author of Don’t Date Rosa Santos and Our Way Back to Always
* "A strong sense of humor pervades Masood’s (More Than Just a Pretty Face) sophomore YA novel...while Arsalan’s past serves as just the right amount of darkness to balance the light that Beenish brings into his life."—Publishers Weekly
"An evocative, charming tale of two types of families, the one you are born into and the one you choose. "—Kirkus Reviews
"Will bring both laughter and heartache to readers. The story provides a look at how religion often defines families and how family and friends can help you stay strong and grow even when things look bleak and dire. Written with humor, this romance takes a look at how we all just want to figure out how we fit in this world."—SLC
"A story of Desi friendship, family, honor, love, and dancing.... Each individual is fully developed into a complex character.... The family and friendship issues discussed in this book are deep and layered, which makes for a very well-developed story."—SLJ
Praise for More Than Just a Pretty Face:
"Funny, open-hearted, and utterly charming, More Than Just a Pretty Face perfectly captures the joys of friendship and first love, as well as all the complexities of identity, faith, and family. This is a spectacular debut."—Katie Henry, author of Heretics Anonymous
"Hilarious and teeming with heart, More Than Just a Pretty Face challenged me, wounded me, made me laugh, and made me love. Danyal has secured his place as a heroic protagonist for the ages who only wants the very best for those he loves. His friends and family are so lucky to have him, and readers will be lucky to have Syed M. Masood's debut. I am a forever fan."—Erin Hahn, author of You'd Be Mine and More Than Maybe
"A deliciously entertaining rom-com that delivers genuine cultural insight while questioning societal norms. Danyal is hilarious, authentic, and disarmingly humble, though I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with all the vivid and multifaceted characters in the book."—Nandini Bajpai, author of A Match Made in Mehendi
"A laugh-out-loud yet heartwarming story about familial obligations, friendship, and love. Syed M. Masood has created an unforgettable cast of characters with the utterly charming, hilarious, and most endearing Danyal Jilani at the center of it. A thoroughly enjoyable read and a great addition to any bookshelf."
—Sabina Khan, author of The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali
"Fresh, funny, and timely, More Than Just a Pretty Face is a wildly entertaining, stereotype-shattering rom-com debut. Total Netflix movie material."—Sarah Henning, author of Throw Like a Girl and the Sea Witch dulology
"I couldn't have been more charmed by Danyal, the hapless pretty-boy and aspiring chef. One of the most unique and likable characters I've come across.This book has such a kind, expansive heart, and I'm immensely thankful that it exists.—Rahul Kanakia, author of We Are Totally Normal
"Masood deftly explores religion, culture, class, and awkward teenage love in this refreshingly candid 'tell it like it is' desi romantic comedy. You'll root hard for Danyal and will be two-fists-high-in-the-air overjoyed when you get to the end."—Suzanne Park, author of The Perfect Escape and Loathe at First Sight
"More Than Just A Pretty Face is the kind of book I've been searching formy entire life!Not only is ithilarious and heartwarming, with characters you can't help but be charmed by, but it honestly portrays the pressures of living up to family expectations and how history shapes our present and future. This is a must-read for everyone."—Adiba Jaigirdar, author of The Henna Wars
"Entertaining.... [A] broadly relatable story that offers plenty of food for thought. Readers will root for Danyal as he evolves and proves he is more than meets the eye. A charming teen romance with real substance."
"A humorous exploration of [the novel's] characters' desi backgrounds, touching upon familial and religious expectations.... Vivid."
"Danyal's seismic character arc, Bisma and his and evolving love, and fascinating historical insights make for an entertaining read."—Booklist
"[Danyal] grapples with both historical prejudices against India and contemporary prejudices within his own community..... Refreshing.... [A] delightful debut."