select praise for
if i tell you
"Bold and evocative, Jasmin Kaur's sophomore novel proves she is an unflinching writer. Tackling several tough topics, IF I TELL YOU THE TRUTH is a book that invites much-needed conversation."
- Jasmine Warga, Newberry Honour-winning and New York Times bestelling author of Other Words For Home
“Timely and rare, this bold, pull-no-punches book deftly tackles immigration, rape culture and what it means to be undocumented in today’s society. You’ll smile, you’ll cry, you’ll want to burn down the patriarchy.”
- Sona Charaipotra, author of Symptoms of a Heartbreak and co-author of Tiny Pretty Things
"I was moved beyond words."
- Nisha Sharma, award winning author of My So-Called Bollywood Life
"Kaur fills in details of both women’s stories and personalities with care and grace. The plot is tightly woven and action packed, and readers will quickly become invested in their complex journeys. Sahaara's voice, in particular, is fresh, honest, and a pleasure to read. A fast-paced story that will keep readers engaged and a thoughtful, loving examination of immigration, sexual assault, and chosen family."
- Kirkus Reviews
"Readers watch Kiran blossom from a timid teenager to a fiercely protective mother silently grappling with past demons. [Sahaara’s] gradual growth into a woman capable of the strength her mother has always exuded is genuinely cheerworthy. Kaur's tighter prose, hard-hitting verse, and spare illustrations in this follow-up are sure to instill empathy and compassion in readers."
- ALA Booklist
"This is a stunning and breathtaking multigenerational Punjabi story told as only Jasmin Kaur can tell it. Such expert storytelling in multilingual cadence with deep cultural nuance is incredibly rare. This complex story gripped my heart, stunned me page after page and lingered in my imagination long after I closed the book. I became so invested in the characters as if they were my relatives. Not all books can give us this gift. In fact, I can not think of many that do."
- Dr. Gayatri Sethi, @desibookaunty
"Read this. It will stay with you."
- A. Cass, Goodreads Reviewer
"I think I highlighted at least half the book and will definitely keep coming back to some of the poetry. I didn't think it was possible but I honestly think this is better than Jasmin's debut. I can't wait to see what she does next."
- Dipali, Goodreads Reviewer ★★★★★
"Truly an emotional novel, one that will capture your hearts for this mother-daughter pair that spans over two decades of their lives and a must-read for anyone who wants to shed some tears out of love."
- Teenage Reads ★★★★★
if i tell you the truth
In this stunning sophomore novel, acclaimed writer Jasmin Kaur explores trauma, fear, courage, community, and the healing power of love in its many forms.
Kiran leaves her home in Punjab for a fresh start in Canada after a sexual assault leaves her pregnant. But overstaying her visa and living undocumented brings its own perils for both her and her daughter, Sahaara.
Sahaara would do anything to protect her mother. When she learns the truth about Kiran’s past, she feels compelled to seek justice—even if it means challenging a powerful and dangerous man.
if i tell you the truth
that i’ve dug
from the hardened depths
of this shrapnel-filled dirt
with these aching, bloody hands
would you believe me?
would you still love me?