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All-American Muslim Girl: 12/28/19

All-American Muslim Girl

All-American Muslim Girl by Nadine Jolie Courtney is about Allie Abraham, an all-American girl who wants to embrace her Muslim heritage even though her parents aren't practicing. They are of a mixed marriage. Her father is a Muslim immigrant who has done his best to assimilate. Her mother was Episcopalian but converted when they married.

Allie has spent her entire life smoothing things over for her parents. The most recent event, on an airplane after a terror attack by a white terrorists. Rumors were already circulating that it had been a Muslim man. Allie is able to calm everyone down including her father and the flight continues without issue. But it gets her thinking about all the micro-aggressions she faces in her day to day life.

The remainder of the book is about how Allie decides to learn more about being Muslim and how to get her parents on board. It's only after her teta dies that they decide to join their daughter.

Allie comes across with a genuine voice. Her struggle to find balance between the two halves of her heritage is well done. So is her struggle to be brave enough to publicly confront racism in the context as a Muslim, rather than as a perceived outsider.

But Allie's story is one of many like this. I suspect we're in the early days of novels with Muslim protagonists and the ones that are selling are the ones that educate while entertain. Hopefully in the second wave there will be more books where our Muslim hero can do things beyond educating the reader about Islam.

Three stars

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