From School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up-Ali-Karamali's primer offers an informal, highly personal introduction to Islam. Chronicling her experience growing up Muslim in California, she comfortably discusses major aspects of the faith such as prayer, fasting, and theology as well as food, fashion, and relationships, while connecting these topics to her daily life. The relaxed presentation makes the information more interesting and accessible to readers who would otherwise find it difficult to follow. The writing flows smoothly as if in conversation, making it understandable and appealing. However, the informality does not detract from the accuracy. A few diagrams and a select, scholarly list for further reading are included. This unique introduction is a good choice for dispelling misconceptions and prejudice about this faith, and will appeal to readers of human-interest stories.-Justin Parrott, Columbus Metropolitan Library, OHα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
The American author, born to parents who had emmigrated from India, discusses in broad outline some facts and facets of Islam and looks at Muslim identity in contemporary Western society. Ali-Karamali’s conversational writing style relies heavily on her own experiences and interests; for instance, food is a repeated motif here, even beyond the first chapter, which is about Muslim eating rules. The book supplies historic context for some Islamic prohibitions, differentiates between religious context and other cultural influences, and keeps the narrative moving quickly. For kids without much knowledge of Islam, this short book can be a starting point, perhaps of most value to students who lack any direct knowledge of Muslim peers and/or have research needs to satisfy. It also will bring up more focused questions that readers can explore elsewhere. Grades 5-8. --Francisca Goldsmith