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Like a Love Story

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Like a Love Story
AuthorAbdi Nazemian
GenreYoung adult fiction, Historical fiction
PublisherBalzer + Bray
Publication date
June 4, 2019

Like a Love Story is a historical, young adult romance novel by Abdi Nazemian, published June 4, 2019 by Balzer + Bray. The story follows Reza, an Iranian boy, as he grapples with his homosexuality amid the AIDS crisis in New York City.


Like a Love Story follows three main characters: Reza, Judy, and Art.

At the beginning of the story, Reza, an Iranian boy, moves to New York City from Toronto with his mother to live with his stepfather and stepbrother. Living amidst the AIDS crisis, Reza fears coming out as homosexual.

Reza quickly befriends Judy, an aspiring fashion designer, and her best friend, Art, the high school's only out and proud homosexual person. Despite Reza's immediate attraction toward Art, he begins dating Judy. Eventually, Art and Reza address their attraction, forcing Reza to come out to his family before they can become a couple.

Beyond the burgeoning romance, Like a Love Story considers the AIDS epidemic in New York City as Judy's Uncle Steven dies from the disease, Art photographs people with AIDS, and the characters participate in ACT UP demonstrations.


Like a Love Story received positive reviews from Common Sense Media[1] and Kirkus Reviews,[2] including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly,[3] Quill & Quire,[4] BookPage,[5] and Booklist.[6][7] Time magazine named it one of the best young adult novels of all time.[8] The book also received the following accolades:


  1. ^ Meyer, Samara (2019-08-26). "Like a Love Story - Book Review". Common Sense Media. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  2. ^ "Like A Love Story". Kirkus Reviews. March 13, 2019. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  3. ^ Brown, Curtis (2019-04-18). "Children's Book Review: Like a Love Story by Abdi Nazemian". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  4. ^ Woodrow-Butcher, Andrew (2019-07-04). "Like a Love Story". Quill and Quire. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  5. ^ Seggel, Heather (June 2020). "Book Review - Like a Love Story by Abdi Nazemian". BookPage.com. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  6. ^ Hong, Terry (October 1, 2019). Like a Love Story. Retrieved 2021-09-18 – via Booklist.
  7. ^ Horan, Molly (April 15, 2019). Like a Love Story. Retrieved 2021-09-18 – via Booklist.
  8. ^ "Like a Love Story - Abdi Nazemian - Hardcover". HarperCollins Canada. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  9. ^ Best Fiction for Young Adults: 2020. March 15, 2020. Retrieved 2021-09-18 – via Booklist.
  10. ^ "2020 Best Fiction for Young Adults". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). 2020-01-21. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  11. ^ "2020 Top Ten Best Fiction". Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). 2020-02-05. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  12. ^ "Stonewall Book Awards List". American Library Association. 2009-09-09. Retrieved 2021-09-18.
  13. ^ "Like a Love Story | Awards & Grants". American Library Association. June 12, 2020. Retrieved 2021-09-18.

See also[edit]