The Garden of My Imaan

It’s hard enough to fit in without also having to decide whether to fast for Ramadan and wear the hijab.
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  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781561456987-1
  • Publication date: 04/01/2013
  • Page Count: 192
  • Size: 6" x 8-1/2"
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781561459216
  • Publication date: 03/01/2016
  • Page Count: 192
  • Size: 6" x 8-1/2"
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781561459735
  • Publication date: 03/01/2016
  • Page Count: N/A
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 8-12
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Description

It’s hard enough to fit in without also having to decide whether to fast for Ramadan and wear the hijab.

Aliya already struggles with trying to fit in, feeling confident enough to talk to the cute boy, or brave enough to stand up to mean kids—the fact that she’s Muslim is just another part of her life. But then Marwa, a Moroccan girl who shares Aliya’s faith, if not her culture, moves to town. Marwa’s quiet confidence leads Aliya to wonder even more about who she is, what she believes, and where she fits in. In a series of letters to Allah she writes for a Sunday school project, Aliya explores her dreams and fears, hoping that with hard work and faith, something beautiful will grow in the garden of imaan—the small quiet place inside where belief unfolds, one petal at a time.

This award-winning novel from author and educator Farhana Zia captures the social and identity struggles of middle school with a fresh, new voice.

Author/Illustrator

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Farhana Zia

Author

Farhana Zia grew up in Hyderabad, India. She is a retired elementary school teacher and the author of picture books and novels. Her stories blend humor and tradition, memories and contemporary moments. She lives in Massachusetts.

Reviews

“Zia (Hot, Hot Roti for Dada-Ji) has deep insight into adolescent Muslim life and capably handles diversity within American Islam.” ―Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

“The novel is at its best when depicting Aliya’s interactions with her grandmother and great-grandmother as well as comic incidents such as a halal turkey mix-up at Thanksgiving dinner. This would be a good addition for libraries serving Muslim populations; it also might be of interest to non-Muslim readers wanting to find out more about the religion’s everyday life and practices.” ―School Library Journal

“Zia’s gentle message—that Muslims come from many cultures whose observances differ, while the long shadow of 9/11 hovers over all—is timely and beautifully conveyed.” ―Kirkus Reviews

Awards

Parents’ Choice Recommended Award ―Parents’ Choice Foundation, 2013

Best Children’s Books of the Year ―Bank Street College of Education, 2014

Social Justice Literature Award ―Literacy and Social Justice Special Interest Group, International Reading Association, 2014

South Asia Book Award (Honor Book) ―South Asia National Outreach Consortium, 2014

Society of School Librarians International Book Awards (Honor Book, Language Arts Grades K-6 Novels) ―Society of School Librarians International, 2013

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Intermediate) ―Kansas National Education Association, 2014

More Details

AR Level: 3.6
Lexile: 550L
Themes: Faith, Indian Culture, Islam, Peer Pressure, Popularity
BISAC 1: JUV033030 JUVENILE FICTION / Religious / Other
BISAC 2: JUV039020 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Issues / Adolescence
BISAC 3: JUV014000 JUVENILE FICTION / Girls & Women