Review—Communicating with Allah by Bassem Saeh

Muslim Reads

6130AMwKE1L._SX321_BO1,204,203,200_Once upon a time, Bassem Saeh was asked to speak at an event about prayer (salah). When the time came, he rushed up to the podium and hurriedly read a few verses and a couple of hadeeth he had jotted down on a piece of paper, reading so quickly that his words ran together. He then turned and left. The audience was shocked and confused. After a moment, he returned to the podium and explained that his performance was no worse than the way that many of us pray. Rushing in, reciting without expression or understanding, and rushing off again.

Communicating with Allah: Rediscovering Prayer is Saeh’s answer to the problem of disconnecting from our distracting, modern lives and finding tranquility in our connection with Allah. Unique and powerful, this book breathes new life into an action that Muslims repeat constantly. If you are looking to worship smarter, a little…

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Written Vs.Not Written Stuff: Where Are Muslim Women Spaces Part II

women in mosques

The Human Lens

Part II by Papatia Feauxzar


Our beloved Prophet (sallallahu aleihi wassalam) said, “If the wife of any one of you seeks permission to go to the Mosque, he may not prevent her.” (Sahih Muslim)

Look for any authentic source that states that women are FORBIDDEN to go to mosques and you won’t find ANY. So why do we women go along with this treatment from these patriarchal Muslim communities? It’s because of the community pressure; the mental conditioning we have been subjected to. Let’s try to break that string that keep the elephants (us) in the room rooted in not leaving the spot we have been planted at; praying at home especially on Eid.

I grew up going to the mosques on special occasions like Eid or Layla-tul Qadr. I saw my grandmothers walk to the mosques daily for EVERY prayer in their humble and…

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Written Vs.Not Written Stuff: Where Are Muslim Women Spaces in Mosques?

The Human Lens

Part I Written by Saadia Haq

The theme for this collab is much closer to heart as it voices the issues focusing on the Muslim women’s role and participation in religious institutions and specifically in mosques. Like in most Islamic states, we note that mosques are part of a daily lives of practicing Muslims however we note that across Asia and Africas the majority of mosques activities are men-led and women presence and participation are not encouraged.

In many Muslim countries, prevailing attitudes are a norm where societies are operating on the mere notion that “there’s no place for women at the local mosque.” As a Muslim feminist encountering these mentalities not only outraging but also speak volumes on the misinterpretation of Islamic teachings. Our cultures and traditions continue to dictate men and women segregated roles and most annoyingly deny women their rightful place within the religion’s central institutions as in…

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Eid Mubarak!

eid mubarak from dkp 1

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Library Fun and Different Foodies…

A Ducktrinor Mom

Assalamu aleikum!

children books

My son and I love to go to the library. It’s in walking distance but we drive due to the heat these days…Lazies…We know.

Today, he did the most peculiar thing or not! He picked up a book on food! He is a picky eater, and I was too. But we both love tasty foods. To back up a little, I say peculiar because my upcoming book is a cookbook! I pray it can be of use to him when he grows up, aameen. I also pray Ivorian students find it useful. Please make dua for us so that the book also be sadaqah juwayriyah, allahumma aameen!

children books 1

Anyway,  Eat, Leo! Eat! is a fun and smart story where Leo always hide when it’s time to eat. To make him eat, his Nonna started telling him a tale with multiple parts to it. She stops at a cliffhanger…

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#MuslimBookClub III

Bismillah ar-rahmani ar-rahimi

Book Club Flyer

Assalamu aleikum!
Welcome to #MuslimBookClub third edition!!! We have several books on the roaster. Grab your drink and enjoy reading our thoughts on the books selected. Don’t go anywhere until you have read it all and perhaps a couple more times and order some of the books that pick your interest, *wink, wink.* So, let’s start with a controversial book.
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Muslim Cool by Dr. Su’ad Abdul Khabeer is a real thought-provocative anthropological account of race and religion in America. It snaps an accurate picture of the era’s components and its culture; pop culture to be exact. The book makes a direct link between Hip-Hop and Islam and boldly calls Hip-Hop ‘Islam.’ In our opinion, this is opened to objective and subjective discussions. Of course poetry and capellas have deep roots in Islam. The gray area is when certain instruments are thrown in the mix. But let’s not judge too quickly because other majorly Muslim countries also have their own music ‘they don’t see as innovative.’ So when it comes to music being halal or haram, every Muslim is slightly a bit hypocritical here. Besides, based on the five pillars of Islam, saying the Shahada makes one Muslim. Therefore, music like dress is a lifestyle. Attesting tawhid is the most important thing. The rest is more about levels of faith, perfecting the deen and seeking closeness to the One. #ZuhudGoals insha’Allah.
Above all, Muslim Cool can’t be denied for the research and reality it paints. Allahu alim.
The Abuse of Forgiveness by Umm Zakiyyah gives many alternative ways or scenarios to help us grasp the misunderstood topic that is forgiveness. It explains terms like forced forgiveness, forgiveness peddlers and unforgiving amongst others. To summarize a bit her thoughts and other professionals in the field that she quoted, one doesn’t have to forgive a perpetrator if it helps the victim completely heal. Reading the lyrics of Scars by Hip-Hop artist Khalil Ismael was relate-able in the sense of protecting one’s heart. Protect it with all your might! We mean it because there are dangers of repressing anger because people deem you too nice or spiritual. For that reason, they expect you to forgive so easily things that leave scars and cause emotional triggers. She starts and ends beautifully with a quote by Cheryl Richardson, “People start to heal the moment they feel heard.” We agree and you will understand if you get a chance to read Normal Calm by Hend Hegazi or Expendable by Sahar AbdulAziz.
Umm Afraz Muhammed gives us some insight on the aforementioned Normal Calm. “Normal Calm is a simple story revolving around Amina, an Arab-American student, who is raped by one of her friends. Un-marriageable according to her culture, her life takes her through a journey where she experiences depression and loneliness. Through her childhood friend, she learns to trust people again, and puts her past behind her. She meets Sherif and they fall in love. They soon share their secrets with each other. What happens once he knows of her rape? This is where the plot begins… Normal Calm is a book that will have you smiling, empathizing, and crying for the characters. A very well-written book by Hend Hegazi.”
Great Muslims of the West by Muhammad M.Khan is a good read because it shines the light on many erased and forgotten Muslims who have lived and left traces on the Western world for centuries and in this century. The most like-able part is when unsung and erased female Muslim scholars have been documented with great care. One such mover and shaker like Khan puts it, is Lois Ibsen al-Faruqi. We drew parallels with her work and Dr. Su’ad Abdul Khabeer’s when it came to art, Islam and music. To end here, the book effortlessly shows that behind every great empire, man, etc. there was a pivotal woman and hidden figure who chose to decline the spotlight. May Allah be pleased with them and and help shine more light on their works, aameen.
muslim book club collage 2
Reclaim Your Heart by Yamin Mogahed was another refreshing read alhamdullilah. She says, “If you allow dunya to own your heart, like the ocean that owns the boat, it will take over.”
The ocean will certainly swallow you but if you sink, make sure to resurface with jewels and pearls. In other words, when you hit rock bottom, decide and know that the only way out is UP! While the book is not for everyone, it has a lot of gems and golden rules that can’t be denied.
DeenplusBook read A Gift for a Muslim Bride by Muhammad Haneef Abdul Majeed. The verdict ? Check it out below.
I would like to recommend this book to teens, just so that they can have the correct mentality when they are of age to marriage and insha’Allah, prosper in their married life. Also, this can be a really good gift for a friend or family member that is about to get married.
Expendable by Sahar Abdulaziz is a Muslim authored read. It was so timely for us on so many levels. The main character is Bella and her recent attitude has been, “Nobody no longer effs with me.” It resonated with us and that’s the power of good writing; it changes lives and it’s therapeutic alhamdullilah.
muslim book club collage 3
The New Muslim’s Field Guide by Theresa Corbin and Kaighla Um Dayo is a compelling self-help book of about 218 non-illustrated pages. For a start, it’s more than a new Muslim’s field guide. It navigates the intricacies of the many shades of Islam due to the plethora of cultural and school of thoughts of its adherents. And hands down, it’s a great start to guide the new Muslims understand Islam… To continue, the book spans over eighteen insightful chapters covering sensitive topics from reliable Islamic sources, cultural Islam, the real Islam, love, sex, marriage to Islamophobia amongst other subjects. The authors also share some ludicrous anecdotes to help the readers relate and keep them tuned in… We highly recommend The New Muslim’s Field Guide to new Muslims, single & searching folks, and any born Muslim who wants to reconnect with the faith.
The Moon of Masarrah by Farah Zaman is a YA and middle-grade adventurous story about cursed diamonds, pirates, sea bluffs, cute red-heads, leaders, villains and smart girls. We see that history repeats itself until one generation gets it right. Zaman is a genius! Masha’Allah. Check it out!
Open the Door to a Wealthier Life: An Islamic Perspective on Personal Finances and Investing by Farhan Khalid is our last good read in this series. We found the Islamic banking info very useful. Non-finance background readers will greatly benefit from this book. And if you have a finance foundation, the tips on Islamic banking can be of help. Keep an eye out for the full review in the upcoming The Lifestyle Magazine insha’Allah.
That’s it. Let’s end with a parting dua.
Subhanaka Allahumma wa-bihamdika ash-hadu anla ilaha illa anta as-taghfiruka wa atoobu ilayka. Aaamen.
The Fofky’s Book Club
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Believe – A Journal Review

A Ducktrinor Mom

believe coverSummary: …a raw list…of list of the rules, obligations, guidelines, regulations, orders, directives, instructions (or however you’d like to perceive them) derived from the 114 chapters, 6,236 verses and 77,449 words in the Quran – the Holy Islamic book.

Author’s Name: A.E


Review: Believe is 34 pages long. I thought it was about what to do and not do with the Quran. But Believe is a simple journal filled with Quranic verses to help the believer live and act by golden rules.

It can definitely be useful when looking for a quick Quranic verse to support a point because the book is divided into 5 easy categories:»»worship »»character»»giving & taking»»relationships »»eating & dressing. In the last section, I found it a bit peculiar that there is a lot of stress on Quran (24:31); I mean the verse is mentioned three times. It would have been better if Quran…

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5 Steps To Write & Design Your Cookbook Like A Professional

Assalamu aleikum!


1) In a word document, dump all your recipes. Just write them. There will be time to edit later. Just get them out on paper first.
2) Take good and simple pictures. If you have old pictures of dishes included in the book, you can use them too. Make sure they look presentable and inviting.
3) Find free recipes’ templates online and tweak them to fit your needs.
4) Copy & paste your recipes in the template and voilà!
5) Now, edit your whole book and send ARCs (Advanced Review Copies) out.

Good luck!


The Fofky’s Kitchen Team


Original Article.

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The Ducktrinors I & II – A Review by The Tsundoku Chronicles

A Ducktrinor Mom

The ducktrinors neelam.png

“I really enjoyed this book. It was so nice to see Muslim characters and I love that more books are coming out with Muslim rep. When I first heard of the book I was really intrigued as it was a science fiction book and I don’t really see that in Islamic fiction.
I enjoyed reading this from the first page. I really liked how brave and courageous that Hanifa was as she lived in a world where any small indication that you practice and religious activity is punishable by death. So no one can pray, fast or anything else that shows you practice a faith. It’s a world where technological advancement is the most important thing. She eventually becomes the leader of a rebellion in which people seek the freedom to practice their religion and she goes in search of the people of cave.
She also gains the support of her siblings and grandfather. I also…

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A Tale of Two Cookies

Featured Image -- 6756

Hey, I Wrote A Book

I’m excited to announce that I have released my fifth book, which happens to be my third children’s book. It’s called A Tale of Two Cookies, and is a rhyming book written for infants, toddlers, and early readers. It’s about two cookies essentially battling for supremacy.

What inspired me to write this book — one that is quite different than my other books — is the fact that my son loves it when I read to him rhyming books, including such classics as Goodnight Moon and The Going to Bed Book. I love seeing the joy on his face and hope to bring that same joy to others. I also hope that parents will enjoy reading this quirky story to their little ones.

Check it out on Amazon.

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Personal Finance Tips Part 6



Mastering personal finance also has a lot to do with fostering good vibes, good manners, smelling nice and dressing well. Today, I have a small list for you. It will be short and sweet.

1. Pay attention to the clothes you wear

When you decide to wear a garment, meticulously check for any holes on it. Let me tell you that we are lights, souls in a vessel (our body). If you wear clothes that have holes on them, you leak. If a bucket of water has a hole in it and you try to fill it up to go from point A to point B, will you get you get to your destination with all the water you had collected? NO! So, if you want to keep all your positive light, energy, spirit, rizq intact, wear clean and neat clothes that are void of any tears, rips, and holes. Get your sewing kits my seamstress financial experts now and start going through your clothes today! Dress well and you will attract only good things insha’Allah!

2. Use a handkerchief

Angels love places that smell nice. Do you want rahma? Strive to attract rahma angels.  When you sweat, DON’T USE YOUR CLOTHES to wipe it. I will make your clothes smelly. Instead, use a handkerchief or a Kleenex. If you smell clean and nice, what good vibes you won’t attract? Individually, we are already surrounded by angels. Attracting more light to us is never a bad thing with smelling clean and pleasant.

3. Manage small $ well and you will be able to manage big $ 

If you worked a cash register before, you will realize that it is hardly even at the end of the day; it’s either a little short or a little over . However, if you strive to catch all the small leaks you have when you’re trying to manage small returns, it will be easy to manage the big dollars. Why? Because you will know by then where all the kinks and errors can be hidden. Remember that.


I hope these Personal Finance Tips Part 6 are beneficial to you.


Jazakh’Allah khair for reading,



You can read more of my finance tips in our 13th issue of Hayati Magazine , in part 1 of this series or in part 2 of this series . Also available are part 3part 4, and part 5.

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Tips to Raise an Inspired Child

A Ducktrinor Mom

Assalamu aleikum!


How have you guys been? We have been busy between homeschooling, all my hats (my different jobs), and a lot of etc. alhamdullilah. I have a small list of things that have worked for us alhamdullilah. Check them out.

1. Making Time for Child Play

During the week, we strive to go outside at least three times. There are weeks where we go to outside playgrounds more than three times. Every week brings its own challenges. So, do what works for you but take them out to play so they can bloom and let out that bouncing energy and joy they possess masha’Allah.

2. Going to Creative Children’s Playgrounds

Crayola experience, Children’s Museums and Lego stores are just a few places that will spark your child’s creativity. Watch out for discounts and free promotions. Then, go enjoy a nice time with your family. You will…

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Fofky’s Kitchen: Easy Ivorian Recipes for Traditional and Street Foods

Assalamu aleikum dear bloggers!

Fofkys 3D 7 1 2018

My next book is about Ivorian food! It will be out September 2018 insha’Allah. Mark the date!!!

Fofkys Kitchen cover in jpeg 7 2 18

Thank you for reading,


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Expendable render 2



DALLAS, TX — July 1st, 2018. DJARABI KITABS PUBLISHING officially released Expendable by American Author Sahar AbdulAziz. Although Expendable is her fifth novel being published, it has seniority over AdbulAziz’s timely and critically acclaimed political thriller titled Tight Rope. Simply said, Expendable was written before Tight Rope. And DJARABI KITABS PUBLISHING is honored to be the best home for this needed book as well. Read the press release to get more details about Tight Rope.

About the Book Expendable

Tethered to a man perfectly willing to destroy her sanity, Bella must somehow find the strength within herself to leave and never look back. Logan appears to all who know him as a charming and adoring husband, yet behind closed doors, a dangerous, darker side emerges. To his circle of unsuspecting friends, he is the master of his destiny. To the trail of broken women left behind, a cruel and callous monster. But to his family and most of all to Bella, he remains an inescapable and recurring nightmare. Trapped, isolated, and unable to seek help, Bella plots her escape, but time, as well as opportunity, are quickly running out. Blaming, shaming, power and control converge in Sahar Abdulaziz’s new contemporary fiction novel, EXPENDABLE–the intimate story behind the “normal” veneer of one couple’s unraveling marriage.

And now the readers have spoken and some reviews about Expendable are in.

“With Expendable, the author has crafted an engrossing story with strong, believable characters as she successfully tackles the difficult topics of emotional abuse and PTSD.”— Susan Moore Jordan

“Expendable is a great story that illuminates the devastating effects of the psychological abuse that one controlling, power-driven person can heap on another individual.”— Catherine Schratt

“Logan supposedly loved Bella but his behavior exemplified nothing close to the true definition of love. Expendable draws the reader inside the mind of a controlling, manipulative man while uncovering the hidden strength of a woman determined to break free.”— Diane Bukoski

If the reviews of Expendable piqued your interest. Enter the book giveaway here and attend the official book launch at Fofky’s here.

About the Author

Abdulaziz covers a wide-range of hard-hitting topics using her writing, and voice to advocate for the underrepresented, the disenfranchised and maligned. Her multidimensional characters have been described as having “substance and soul”, while demonstrating that those who have suffered abuse are not victims, but survivors. She and her husband presently reside in Pennsylvania–the proud parents of six grown children and the mega-proud grandparents of seven beautiful grandchildren. Visit her website.

Expendable is available in paperback at Djarabi Kitabs Publishing and Fofky’s Online Book Cafe’s websites. The book is also available on Amazon on eBook and paperback formats. Don’t miss the official book launch and reading at Fofky’s. Check them all out today!

Djarabi Kitabs Publishing

PO BOX 703733

Dallas, TX 75370



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The New Muslim’s Field Guide — A Review

the new muslim guide fofkys 1

The New Muslim’s Field Guide by Theresa Corbin and Kaighla Um Dayo is a compelling self-help book of about 218 non-illustrated pages. For a start, it’s more than a new Muslim’s field guide. It navigates the intricacies of the many shades of Islam due to the plethora of cultural and school of thoughts of its adherents. And hands down, it’s a great start to guide the new Muslims understand Islam. Besides, I have always felt like there wasn’t enough out there or done to help new Muslims with salat and other accommodations such as decent support systems.

Having said all that, The Field Guide will also help people who plan in getting married outside the scope of their race and culture. I say this because had I read such a book seven years ago, many things I learned the hard way could have been avoided. All is not lost though, there is always a reason for our trials and a lesson to be learned. The Field Guide book will definitely help others perusing the thought of intra-cultural marriage.

May Allah also make this guide sadaqah juwayriyah for the authors, aameen.

To continue, the book spans over eighteen insightful chapters covering sensitive topics from reliable Islamic sources, cultural Islam, the real Islam, love, sex, marriage to Islamophobia amongst other subjects. The authors also share some ludicrous anecdotes to help the readers relate and keep them tuned in. It’s truly an easy read because Corbin and Um Dayo have a certain humorous pluck even when dealing with delicate and controversial topics in the ummah.

This is the look of my personal copy depicted below… If I tell you all about it, you won’t need to purchase it for the people around you who need it *laughs*.

the new guide papatias copy.jpg

I highly recommend The New Muslim’s Field Guide to new Muslims, single & searching folks, and any born Muslim who wants to reconnect with the faith.

Rating: 4.5/5

You can purchase it on paperback format at Amazon or at our e-Store. The book is also available in Kindle format on Amazon.

the new muslim guide fofkys 2.jpg

Bio: A blogger and a barista amongst other hats, Feauxzar enjoys reading and drinking soothing tea. Check her out at


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EXPENDABLE by Sahar AbdulAziz

OUT JULY 1st, 2018 insha’Allah. Join us for the book launch at Fofky’s here.

Expendable 2

Enter the giveaway here.

Papatya, the Barista

Check out the blog ->

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The Keir Collection: The First Islamic Art Collection at the Dallas Museum of Art


DALLAS — It has been a little over a year since the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) of Texas received the third largest collection of Islamic Art of North America on an extended loan. It is said to be one of the world’s leading and private collection of Islamic art. The collection features Islamic and Islamicate arts from Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. The collection was put together by Edmund de Unger, an Hungarian art collector over a period of fifty years. The Keir Collection used to be also displayed in a British mansion, thus the name. With the help and determination of Sabiha Al Khemir, a Tunisian American curator, the collection made its way in the DMA for the public to see.



The Keir Collection is composed of priceless and unique pieces of Islamic and Islamicate History and Art. The colors of some of the pieces are vibrant and the skillmanship of the pieces is simply praise-able.




Ewer, Egypt, late 10th to early 11th century, rock crystal; 19th-century gold mount by Jean-Valentin Morel. Brad Flowers / Keir Collection of Islamic Art on loan to the Dallas Museum of Art.

Source: The National



Bowl, Iran, 13th century, ceramic. Ira Schrank / The Keir Collection of Islamic Art on loan to the Dallas Museum of Art.

SourceThe National





The preserved Arabic texts of some items in the precious Keir Collection range from a Quran the size of a very small matchbox to embroidered fabric with sacred Arabic texts. The level of detail is mind-boggling and often requires a magnifying glass to peruse.



The map of the Islamic world in Africa was not totally accurate. It only showed two leading Islamic centers in West Africa and they were more than that. What’s more? Islam has always been all over the world, not in sporadic areas. Timbuktu and Abuja were great Islamic centers and so was Mankono in the north of Ivory Coast.



The Keir Collection is composed of about 2000 pieces if not more. The DMA displays about 150 pieces at a time. Perhaps we will get to see an old manuscript from Timbuktu like depicted below one day locally.

Source: Manuscript recovered from Bamako, Mali by ‘Timbukto Renaissance’ curator Abdel Kader Haidara (image via the Prince Claus Fund)



Jug, second half of the 12th century, ceramic. Ira Schrank / The Keir Collection of Islamic Art on loan to the Dallas Museum of Art.

Source: The National






Manuscript, Turkey, circa 1605–1610, work on paper. Ira Schrank / The Keir Collection of Islamic Art on loan to the Dallas Museum of Art.

Source: The National







Visit for more details.


Written by Papatia Feauxzar is an accountant, an avid reader and writer living in Dallas, Texas with her nuclear family. She blogs at Papatia feels blessed by the Almighty to be able to work in accounting from home while she raises her young son, pens and reads him stories.

 Papatia Feauxzar . Original article appeared here.

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Chains of Fear by Neymat Raboobee – A Review

Chains of Fear Cover.png

Title: Chains of Fear

Author: Neymat Raboobee

Publisher: Tosh Publishing in South Africa

Paperback Price : $10.10 on Amazon here

Kindle Price$10.00 on Amazon here

Summary: “I know I should be trusting Allah and I do, of course I do! I just… I don’t trust me anywhere near as easily.” Ammarah thought she was ready for marriage. She’d thought the idea over carefully for months before even bringing it up with her parents.  Now that there’s a chance she may actually get what she wanted, Ammarah is far less certain. Eaten up with anxiety over her own shortcomings and the impending challenge of altering herself to fit what a good wife should be, Ammarah has to decide what her next step will be. Will she let fear overwhelm her or will she find the courage to start this new journey?

Review: Chains of Fear by Neymat Raboobee aka The Imperfect Muslimah is a story that is told in the third person omniscient voice. Raboobee narrates the captivating and twisted ways of the characters with a lot of ease. Ammarah, the protagonist, is no saint but she is like-able. Muneer, one supporting character, is sarcastic and dashing. We also get to read about conniving and appalling characters including family members that keep us tuned in this tale. Ammarah’s mom inappropriate behavior is very relatable. I have come across many real stories of that kind from almost any race; truly it’s that human kind evil that is often really taboo to even discuss in many Muslim and non-Muslim circles. A thrilling read overall.

My rating: 4/5

Thank you for reading,


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Giveaway for Dukyarian Rectangle — Dukyarian Chronicles

Enter to win one in three copies of Dukyarian Rectangle by Babs Soares. Giveaway ends 07/31/2018 and winners will be notified by email to provide their mailing addresses. Thanks!

via Giveaway for Dukyarian Rectangle — Dukyarian Chronicles

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Mini-Review—Surprise! by Zaheera Jina

Muslim Reads

61k96V726RL._SX260_Oomi tells Yusuf and Isa that she has a surprise for them. They take guesses as they eat dinner, and clean up, and play, and brush their teeth, and finally . . . They discover that the surprise is even better than any of their guesses. This is a cute story about a young family’s everyday life with a Muslim bent.

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