scar of the bamboo leaf

TITLE: Scar Of The Bamboo Leaf
AUTHOR: Sieni A.M.
PUBLICATION: Published July 9th 2014
GENRE: YA > Realistic Fiction | Romance
PAGES: 296pages (Kindle Edition)
SOURCE: arc via tour host
RATING: 4 ★★★★
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“Her heart wept when she realized that the hardest part about loving him was the idea that his love was never meant for her.”

Walking with a pronounced limp all her life has never stopped fifteen-year-old Kiva Mau from doing what she loves. While most girls her age are playing sports and perfecting their traditional Samoan dance, Kiva finds serenity in her sketchbook and volunteering at the run-down art center her extended family owns.

When seventeen-year-old Ryler Cade steps into the art center for the first time, Kiva is drawn to the angry and misguided student sent from abroad to reform his violent ways. Scarred and tattooed, an unlikely friendship is formed when the gentle Kiva shows him kindness and beauty through art.

But after a tragic accident leaves Kiva severely disfigured, she struggles to see the beauty she has been brought up to believe. Just when she thinks she’s found her place, Ryler begins to pull away, leaving her heartbroken and confused. The patriarch of the family then takes a turn for the worse and Kiva is forced to give up her dreams to help with familial obligations, until an old family secret surfaces that makes her question everything.

Immersed in the world of traditional art and culture, this is the story of self-sacrifice and discovery, of acceptance and forbearance, of overcoming adversity and finding one’s purpose. Spanning years, it is a story about an intuitive girl and a misunderstood boy and love that becomes real when tested.





I can’t remember the last time I’ve cried this hard. It’s beautiful, people, it’s heartbreaking and beautiful.

I’m sorry in advance if you think this review is short. It’s just, it’s SO GOOD I DON’T THINK MY REVIEW CAN JUSTIFY HOW GOOD IT IS.

If you read the blurb, you’d think that it’s another bad boy and good girl love story. But it’s not. It’s so much more than that. The timeline of the story starts from Kiva and Ryler when they’re young and still understanding the meaning and ways of love. And lasts until they grew old, got reunited and realized that YES, they do belong to each other. Kiva has a disability but still looks in the beautiful side of things. And Ryler’s an Arab who is lost and found his way to Samoa.

Scar of the Bamboo Leaf is a heartwrenching read written in the most beautiful way possible. Sieni is.. amazing. Her words slays! They cut through me. I admit that reading this story is difficult. It really pained me at some chapters, but it’s poignant. Meaningful and moving.

eat it

More reason to love this novel is the setting and the arts that comes with this novel. I was enthralled by the way Sieni describes Kiva’s culture. And you guys, I’m not very good at art, like, the only thing I can make is stick figures but… everytime there’s a chapter where Kiva is doing her art.. I feel like picking up a paintbrush. As I said above, Sieni’s words slays. It’s affecting me in every way possible.

So… do I recommend this? You bet your butt that I do! This is definitely one of my favorite reads this year.








Sieni A.M. is a coffee addict, Instagram enthusiast, world traveler, and avid reader turned writer. She graduated as an English and History high school teacher from the University of Canterbury and is currently living in Israel with her husband and two daughters. “Scar of the Bamboo Leaf” is her second novel.




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