books

Reading with Maryam – Discovering Muslim children’s books that delight and inspire

Some time ago, I complained to a friend that there were few good children’s books on Muslims or Islamic themes. I’m an American-born Muslim woman, and I was looking for books to share with my older daughter Maryam, then three. I wanted lively, upbeat bedtime books that would introduce her to our faith and identity while emphasizing universal values.
My friend, a thoughtful educator at a local Islamic school invited me to visit the school’s library. Unfortunately, that visit largely confirmed my dismal view.

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An anthology of love—Muslim style

It is a universal truth—although not universally acknowledged—that we all share the desire to love and be loved for who we are. We see ourselves reflected in love stories, regardless of how far removed in time and place they might be from our lives. The perennial popularity of period romances—“Downton Abbey” anyone?—shows that beneath the robes or corsets, the heart flutters in ways that we instinctively recognize even today.

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