(Un)Arranged Marriage by Bali Rai

Manny is a typical teen – he wants to be a footballer, he wants to be famous, he wants a girlfriend. Except that Manny’s family want him to get married to a girl he doesn’t know. On his 17th birthday. His family also don’t like his friends and don’t think university is something to aspire to – they want him to stick to his Punjabi community. If Manny wants to break away and do his own thing then he faces losing his family. It is a tough decision to make but to Manny can see no other option.

Funny and very perceptive, this book paints a picture of the problems faced by some teenagers born in the UK to immigrant families. The ambitions of the teenagers are sometimes in direct conflict with the expectations of their families and communities. Manny is very likeable and very human and this story is not preachy or boring. It is fun and funny, and very informative too – it will entertain the reader and give them plenty to think about too.

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