Amal Unbound, by Aisha Saeed

amal-unbound

Title: Amal Unbound
Author: Aisha Saeed 
Genre: Middle Grade/Juvenile Fiction
Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group
Released: May 2018
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook, Kindle
Pages: 240 (hardcover)
Source: I borrowed a copy from Abu Dhabi Children’s Library
Rating: 5/5
Purchase: Amazon | GoodReads | Penguin Random House 

Life is quiet and ordinary in Amal’s Pakistani village, but she had no complaints, and besides, she’s busy pursuing her dream of becoming a teacher one day. Her dreams are temporarily dashed when–as the eldest daughter–she must stay home from school to take care of her siblings. Amal is upset, but she doesn’t lose hope and finds ways to continue learning. Then the unimaginable happens–after an accidental run-in with the son of her village’s corrupt landlord, Amal must work as his family’s servant to pay off her own family’s debt.
Life at the opulent Khan estate is full of heartbreak and struggle for Amal–especially when she inadvertently makes an enemy of a girl named Nabila. Most troubling, though, is Amal’s growing awareness of the Khans’ nefarious dealings. When it becomes clear just how far they will go to protect their interests, Amal realizes she will have to find a way to work with others if they are ever to exact change in a cruel status quo, and if Amal is ever to achieve her dreams.

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Big Little Steps, by Mathilde Loujayne

Big Little Steps
Title: Big Little Steps: A Woman’s Guide to Finding a Balanced Lifestyle and a Glowing Heart in Islam
Author: Mathilde Loujayne
Genre: Non-fiction
Edition: First
Publisher: The Dreamwork Collective
Released: 2018
Format: Paperback
Pages: 245
Source: I received a hard copy from the author in exchange for an unbiased and honest review.
Rating: 5/5
What are Muslim women’s rights? What do modesty, humbleness and fashion have in common? What is halal food?
This book is designed to empower women with Islamic values. You are given the tools to become the best version of yourself, as you enter a universal family beyond borders, called the Ummah. Welcome, sister!

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Amina’s Voice, by Hena Khan

Amina's Voice Book Review
Title: Amina’s Voice
Author: Hena Khan
Genre: Middle Grade/Juvenile Fiction
Publisher: Salaam Reads
Released: March 2017
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle
Pages: 208
Source: I borrowed a copy from Abu Dhabi Children’s Library.
Rating: 3/5
Purchase: Amazon | GoodReads
Amina has never been comfortable in the spotlight. She is happy just hanging out with her best friend, Soojin. Except now that she’s in middle school everything feels different. Soojin is suddenly hanging out with Emily, one of the “cool” girls in the class, and even talking about changing her name to something more “American.” Does Amina need to start changing too? Or hiding who she is to fit in? While Amina grapples with these questions, she is devastated when her local mosque is vandalized.
Amina’s Voice brings to life the joys and challenges of a young Pakistani American and highlights the many ways in which one girl’s voice can help bring a diverse community together to love and support each other.

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Sadiq and the Desert Star | Sadiq and the Green Thumbs | Authored by Siman Nuurali

Sadiq and the Desert Star and Sadiq and the Green Thumbs.png
Title: Sadiq and the Desert Star
Author: Siman Nuurali
Genre: Children’s Book (6-9)
Illustrator: Anjan Sarkar
Series: Sadiq
Publisher: Picture Windows Book, a Capstone Imprint
Released: August 2019
Formats: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle
Pages: 64
Source: I was gifted a soft copy from Capstone Publishing to review for the #ReadYourWorld Multicultural Children’s Book Day event.
Rating: 5/5
When Sadiq’s father leaves on a business trip, he worries he’ll miss his baba too much. But Baba has a story for Sadiq: the story of the Desert Star. Learning about Baba’s passion for the stars sparks Sadiq’s interest in outer space. But can Sadiq find others who are willing to help him start the space club of his dreams?

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Meet Yasmin! | Yasmin in Charge | Authored by Saadia Faruqi

Meet Yasmin! and Yasmin in Charge
Title: Meet Yasmin!
Author: Saadia Faruqi
Genre: Children’s Book (5-8)
Illustrator: Hatem Aly
Series: Yasmin
Publisher: Picture Windows Book, a Capstone Imprint
Released: August 2018
Formats: Paperback, Kindle
Pages: 96
Source: I was gifted a soft copy from Capstone Publishing to review for the #ReadYourWorld Multicultural Children’s Book Day event.
Rating: 5/5
Meet Yasmin! Yasmin is a spirited second-grader who’s always on the lookout for those “aha” moments to help her solve life’s little problems. Taking inspiration from her surroundings and her big imagination, she boldly faces any situation, assuming her imagination doesn’t get too big, of course! A creative thinker and curious explorer, Yasmin and her multi-generational Pakistani American family will delight and inspire readers.

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Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020 #ReadYourWorld

MCBD 2020

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020 (1/31/20) is in its 7th year! This non-profit children’s literacy initiative was founded by Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen; two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural books and authors on the market while also working to get those book into the hands of young readers and educators.  

Seven years in, MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves continues. Continue reading

Clear the Path: A Rhyme Book on Manners for Little Muslims, by Hosai Mojaddidi

Clear the Path by Hosai Mojaddidi_Book Review

Title: Clear the Path: A Rhyme Book on Manners for Little Muslims
Genre: Children’s Book
Illustrator: Teresa Abboud
Publisher: Prolance
Released: 2017
Format: Paperback
Pages: 26
Purchase: Amazon | GoodReads | Prolance
Source: I received a soft copy from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased and honest review.
Rating: 4/5
An integral part of every Muslim household and Islamic school classroom is teaching children proper adab (etiquette). Clear the Path: A Rhyme Book on Manners for Little Muslims is a fun and simple collection of rhymes with colorful and relatable illustrations to help parents and educators teach their children and students the basics of Islamic etiquette in private and public spaces.
Inspired by nearly forty sound hadiths (narrations), all of which are included in the reference section, this book not only provides practical lessons in Islamic etiquette, but also serves as a valuable resource of essential hadiths every Muslim should know.

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Interview with Nisha Sulthana

Interview with NS

1. Masha Allah wa Alhamdulillah, I am in love with your memoir. Could you please tell us a little about your journey as an author?
Well, it was a learning experience (in) that I was going to relate my personal experiences and views to an unknown audience, (was) a bit unnerving but I thought I had a powerful story to share. On and off I got bogged down in trying to couch some intimate details of my story with some artistry. As every author would feel, I am quite not happy with my work (as) it could have been better towards the end and could have brought a more sublime conclusions. Continue reading

In the Land of Strangers, by Zeneefa Zaneer

In the Land of Strangers by Zeneefa Zaneer

“These stories discuss different relationships in our life. And how we have become strangers to our beloved ones. We only start realizing it once we lose someone dearer to our life.”
In the Land of Strangers, Zeneefa Zaneer

In the Land of Strangers by Zeneefa Zaneer is a collection of the author’s best short stories that she has penned down, and self-published through her small-scale organization Think Publishers. Continue reading