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Book Review: Ramadan by Farah Kinani

Leila, the daughter of one of Kinani’s friends, was the inspiration for this book. Leila told Kinani what happened one day at School when she told her friends she would not be joining them for lunch. Her friends who at the time did not know nor understand anything about Ramadan,the Muslim holy month of fasting, encouraged Leila to hide and eat or have something to drink, and some even thought Leila was being punished or on a time out. Kinani, shocked by the children’s response, decided to visit Leila’s  school to give  a short talk about the holy month of Ramadan. Hence, this book is the Author’s attempt to educate and answer questions about Ramadan and to give mainly the non-Muslim reader, primarily children and teens, some idea of what Muslims do during Ramadan.

It is a well-informed piece of writing with several colourful illustrations, a glossary and Islamic calendar at the end of the book. The language and writing style is simple and very descriptive, making it easy for children to read and understand. Therefore, I  think  it’s a wonderful and smart choice of book for both Muslim and non-Muslim children alike to learn about Ramadan, its significance and the different rituals practised by Muslims during this month. I think it would also be very useful to Teachers who wish to educate their class of majority non-Muslim children about Ramadan.

This book can be purchased online from Creative Education and Publishing.

Review provided by Zainab John, Founder and Club Leader of Muslimah Voices Book Club (MVBC) – new book club for Muslim women.

About the Author

Farah Kinani

Farah Kinani spent several years as an active journalist in Morocco before marrying and moving to the United States where she and her husband started their family; they have two children. A few years later Ms. Kinani returned to writing as a freelance journalist and discovered her passion for blogging atGlobal Voices Online.

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Book Review: The Rice Bag Hammock (The Aja Series) by Shaeeza Haniff

A delightful read!

Written primarily for children of any age group, culture or religion, this book is filled with rich and detailed illustrations depicting the Guyanese countryside; and the story is told in a simple lyrical or rhythmic voice, making it a light, quick and easy read. The story traces the journey and transformation of an ordinary burlap bag from once holding inside freshly harvested rice into a hammock which then becomes the centre of play and everyday family life and activities, like cousins gathering to make pointer broom or to swing whilst singing a song, a place of rest for the sick, a place for a young couple to sit and enjoy the moonlight, a good hideout for a game of hide and seek or an alone time place.

If you’re Guyanese like me, you can appreciate the many roles a hammock may have within a Guyanese family, especially if you grew up in the Guyanese countryside. For me, this book brought back fond childhood memories of experiences with our family hammock – not the rice bag kind like the one in this book, but ours was made of heavy colourful cloth and tied under our house for good shade from the sun. I could just sink myself into that hammock to daydream and forget all my childish worries or take a break from play to enjoy some coconut water on a cool breezy afternoon then rock myself to sleep. “Ahhh, those hammock days eh.”

This book also reminded me that sometimes it’s the simplest things in life,  like the hammock ‘that Aja’ made’ that can bring us and those around us great joy and happiness and that everything has a purpose, even the most seemingly insignificant of things. I would recommend this book for any age group of children and even adults will enjoy it.


Purchase online at Amazon and Barnes and Noble 

Review provided by Zainab John, Founder and Club Leader oMuslimah Voices Book Club (MVBC) – new book club for Muslim women.

About the Author

Source: IndieReads.net

“Shaeeza Haniff is a Kindergarten Teacher in New York.

First born to the former Chief Education Officer of Guyana and his wife, Shaeeza grew up in the coastal region of tropical Guyana, South America. Her childhood was filled with memories of large family gatherings, dozens of cousins, aunts, uncles and many song filled hammock swings. Aja (northern Indian word for paternal grandfather) was prominent in her life until his death in 1987. Shaeeza along with her two sisters and one brother listened to stories of his many trips abroad filled with adventures and laden with every detail. His gift for storytelling seems to have passed down to Shaeeza as she has been writing and making up stories since she was ten years old.

She followed her father’s footsteps and became a Nursery School teacher at the age of 20, graduating top of her class [and] continued to teach after her move to New York City in a private school.

[Shaeeza] gets inspiration for her books from her family, memories of her childhood and her many students. Many of her stories are based on real events and incidents or conversations…”

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Full list of the 100 Most Powerful Arab Women

The Full list of the 100 Most Powerful Arab Women is now available.


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Salaam Alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu,

You can still read the older ILM issues by following the links below inshaAllah!


Ramadan 2012

Hajj 2012

Egypt/Sudan/Black History Awareness


 Our newest issue will be out SOON inshaAllah! Check back!

Support ILM we are a FREE Islamic Lifestyle Magazine Online, brought to you by volunteers! With your help and support we can be around longer inshaAllah. Share your stories and let us know what you would love to read about in the magazine; your magazine you decide inshaAllah! Just send an email to the editor to get your work/ideas checked inshaAllah. editor@ilmonlinemag.com


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Getting your Youngster up for Suhoor—Without Shouting

By Grandma Jeddah
It’s Ramadan! Time for early morning meals, sundown feasts and late night prayers. You want your child to learn the rituals of Ramadan, because Ramadan is one of the pillars of faith of our religion. Why not start out by getting him in the habit of getting up for the early morning suhoor meal.  It’s full of blessings and can give your child the energy he needs to make it through the day on an empty stomach.
             Although suhoor is an important start to a day of fasting, parents sometimes have a difficult time getting their children up for suhoor. Here are some helpful tips on how to wake up your child for suhoor.
            First, make sure your child is getting sufficient rest throughout the day.  A well rested child is easier to wake up early in the morning than one who is in need of rest. Try to ensure that he’s getting his required hours of sleep per day.  Children aged five to ten need daily about 10 to 11 hours of sleep.  Youth over ten years need about 8 to 9 hours a day of sleep. Attempt to get your child to bed on time.   It’s common to stay awake into the wee hours of the night making up for lost eating time during Ramadan, but seek to avoid keeping your child up into extremely late hours of the night. That way, waking up early will be much easier on his body both physically and mentally.
Grandma Jeddah is a teacher of over 30 years and a mother of 11 children and grandmother of 13. She is the author of Discipline without Disrespecting: Discover the Hidden Secrets of How to Effectively Discipline your Muslim Child—And Keep your Peace of Mind While at It. To order her book or subscribe to her free newsletter, please visit: www.grandmajeddah.com.
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Book Signing, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, 2013 – The Beauty of Covering Up by Noorshin NG Abdullah

I recently met up with Malaysian Author, Noorshin NG Abdullah in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia while on vacation for a signed copy of her book ‘The Beauty of Covering Up.’


In the Prologue of the book she says, “this book is a humble means of sharing my thoughts and ideas on the beauty of Muslimah covering ourselves not only with garments that conceal our aurah but also with beautiful manners and character that become our cloak if humility as Muslims [and] I hope this book can generate more awareness on the importance, virtue and spiritual obligation of behaving, thinking and acting modestly as a way of life of a Muslim…

Muslimah covering ourselves not only with garments that conceal our aurah but also with beautiful manners and character that become our cloak if humility as Muslims [and] I hope this book can generate more awareness on the importance, virtue and spiritual obligation of behaving, thinking and acting modestly as a way of life of a Muslim…”

The book was also written with Muslimah reverts/converts in mind. Hence, its simplicity.


First Impressions

I was impressed with the quality of the book and how it was presented. The book comes with a sturdy and cute pink bag. Hard- cover with glossy pages, very colourful illustrations and each chapter is represented by a different colour, giving it a very feminine, girlie and young feel. Very simple, short and easy to read chapters. And with a quick browse, one notices quotes from the Holy Qur’an, hadith and personal stories shared by Muslim women.

I love the title of some of the Chapters like ‘You Are Beautiful! ‘ and ‘Beauty from Within.’ Then the final chapter shows several design illustrations with instructions and ideas as to how hijab can be worn.

Thank you so much for signing my copy sister Noorshin and it was a pleasure to finally meet you.

Some of the Chapters of the book

For purchase details, please email: nnoorshin@yahoo.com 

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Fall 2012 Trends: Peplum, Fur, Waists, Leather and More!

Have a look at Muslimah friendly trends from Fall 2012. Did you rock peplum or the military look? Let us know in the comments below!


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