- One of "10 Novels You Should Read in June" —CrimeReads
- Starred review, Publishers Weekly
- Listed on CrimeReads' "The Most Anticipated Crime Books of 2020: Summer Reading Edition"
- Listed in the New York Times "Globetrotting" 2020 preview
“[Patel’s] astute eye for society in Gauteng, that ever-shifting mosaic of bizarrely diverse people, enhances this thriller-like novel.” — Mail & Guardian (South Africa)
"Outside the Lines is a sharp novel that critiques how personal excesses damages those who indulge in it." —Foreword Reviews
"Patel displays an exceptional ability to plumb the depths of her characters, each of whose points of view throws light on the realities of the other narrators. Rays of hope and gentle overtures to love lift this vibrant novel." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
Listed in the New York Times "Globetrotting" preview of books coming out in 2020 from around the world.
"In this coke-fueled thrill-ride through the underworld of Joburg, characters face difficult decisions and try to find some humanity, even as the quest for money and the need to meet family expectations tear them apart. South Africa is one of the great hot spots for crime fiction these days, and we can’t wait to see more from Ameera Patel." —CrimeReads ("The Most Anticipated Crime Books of 2020: Summer Reading Edition")
"Patel deftly manages her large ensemble cast, whose stories unfold via a rapidly shifting first-person, present-tense narrative. Race, class, religion, and culture factor prominently in both the relationships that bind the characters and the conflicts that tear them apart." — Mystery Scene Magazine
"[T]his dysfunctional family drama has unexpected moments of dark comedy to disrupt the unfolding, inevitable tragedy. While exposing the multilayered inequities of the haves vs. have-nots, Patel slyly ridicules white privilege, religious hypocrisy, clueless parenting, casual racism, ineffective rules and breakable laws. In clipped, often unadorned sentences, Patel skillfully presents a raw narrative of careless disconnections and scathing verity." —Shelf Awareness
"There’s been an encouraging increase of diverse voices in South African literature of late, and Ameera Patel’s debut contributes to this exciting new movement. In her dramatic, drug-addled thriller, Patel explores criminality, excess, humanity and hope.” —Ms. Magazine
“[A] raw depiction of the intermeshed nature of political and personal realities and the human connections, dreams, aspirations of choice and self-alienation that exist in their gaps and fissures. The author dexterously manages a seamless storytelling experience despite the ever-shifting narrative voices that flit between the consciousness of five characters from three different races, each having their own religious affiliations and emotional baggages that constitute their psychological interiority.” —The Mantle
"A deftly crafted novel that blends family drama with crime and black comedy, Outside the Lines is a unique and extraordinary novel by an author with an impressive flair for the kind of narrative storytelling that grips the reader’s full attention and invests them in the characters and events portrayed. A riveting read from first page to last, Outside the Lines is an extraordinary and recommended addition to community and college/university library Contemporary Literary Fiction collections and personal reading lists.”— Midwest Book Review