96 Words for Love by Rachel Roy and Ava Dash

Cover Art Courtesy of Goodreads
This is definitely a book where the insides match the beauty of the cover. 96 Words for Love by Rachel Roy and Ava Dash is full of beautiful references to Indian legend while simultaneously tackling the important issues of sex trafficking and racism. 

This story follows Raya, who is full of anxiety after receiving her acceptance to UCLA and having to decide a path for her future. Then Raya's grandmother dies, and her parting words to Raya include mentioning that she hid some things for Raya and her cousin at her beloved ashram in India. Now, Raya and her cousin journey to the ashram hoping to find what their grandmother left them and reconnect with her, but they may find more than that along the way.

I really enjoyed my time spent with this story, and it was an incredibly quick read. The imagery and vivid descriptions made it easy for me to place myself in the ashram with Raya. I loved getting to learn more about Indian legend and culture, and I identified with Raya's struggle to figure out what she wanted to do with her life. 

I am glad that this addressed sex trafficking, as this is a major issue that you don't see a lot in YA fiction. I also appreciated how it addressed racism. A character in this book isn't intentionally racist, but many of the things she says are hurtful, and she has the opportunity to learn why they are wrong and offensive. I do think everything wrapped up too quickly and perfectly. I would have appreciated a more gritty ending, and think that would have been more realistic to some of the subjects at hand. 

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Thanks so much to Jimmy Patterson for a copy of this read! 96 Words for Love by Rachel Roy and Ava Dash is out on January 15th, so be sure to pick up a copy!


  1. Great review. I agree it's not a subject often talked about in YA books.

  2. I was reading a YA book which was talking about body shaming and eating disorders and so when I saw you saying that a YA book is taking about racism and sex trafficking it made me realise that categorising a book doesn't matter in today's book world. Any book can talk about serious matters in the guise of fiction and I find that a great thing for the readers to be exposed to different and serious topics..

  3. Sounds bold and daring - I like that ;)

  4. great review! Glad to see you liked it. That cover is so gorgeous!

  5. Great review, this is the first time I have heard or seen this book and I absolutely love the gorgeous book cover and it sounds really amazing as well. Thank you so much for sharing your awesome post and for putting this book on my radar.

  6. Very impressive post. It is very relevant and accurate. Thanks for sharing