All-American Muslim Girl
All-American Muslim Girl
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Annotation: Sixteen-year-old Allie, aged seven when she knew her family was different and feared, struggles to claim her Muslim and Arabic heritage while finding her place as an American teenager.
Catalog Number: #200740
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Hot Title Hot Title
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Pages: 419 pages
Availability: Available
New Title: Yes
ISBN: 0-374-30952-3
ISBN 13: 978-0-374-30952-7
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2018056246
Dimensions: 22 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
ALA Booklist
From her looks, people don't suspect Allie is anything but an "all-American" (that is, white) girl. But when her family settles in Providence, Georgia, the Islamophobia she has until then only witnessed from a distance forces her to find the strength to tell her friends and boyfriend ose dad is a fearmongering TV talking head at her family is Muslim. The road to claiming her religion through study is rife with bigotry but also rich with support. There's a lot to unpack here, but isn't there always when it comes to religion and politics? Courtney does so with poise, naturally integrating genuinely informative context into the story. Allie's inner turmoil about having it all while still abiding by her religion resonates, and her choice to be a practicing Muslim is particularly moving during a time when that choice can seem dangerous. Passages debunk misconceptions about Islam, addressing the topics of feminism, equality, and more, urging one to consider how the Western gaze can lead to misinterpretation. Readers trapped between two worlds, religious or not, will find solace here.
School Library Journal Starred Review
Gr 7 Up High school sophomore Allie Abraham often feels like an imposter. Her father is a Circassian Muslim and her mother is a white American who converted to Islam when they married. Red-haired, fair-skinned Allie is used to being told that she doesn't "look Muslim," and her non-practicing father, afraid of potential harassment, encourages her to keep her identity to herself. But Allie increasingly worries that she's betraying her fellow Muslims by hiding who she is, especially after moving to conservative Georgia. Her new classmates openly denigrate Islam in front of her, leaving Allie feeling like "a receptacle for unguarded Just Between Us White People ignorance," while at her new Qu'ran study group, she struggles with feeling "not Muslim enough." But when Allie falls for charming, vulnerable soccer player Wells and learns that his father is the host of a cable news show that spews Islamophobic and anti-immigrant vitriol, Allie feels increasingly driven to take a stand. This book may bill itself as a romance, but the true heart of the novel is Allie's experience falling in love with the meaning and beauty of Islam. She grapples honestly with the hard questions involved in belonging to a faith community: What if she's cherry-picking her beliefs? What if others don't see her as a "good" Muslim? Is she still allowed to question or criticize aspects of a faith that she's new to practicing? nvoices author Courtney incorporates a diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints among Allie's Muslim friends and family, creating a vibrant cast of characters who compellingly portray the individual nuances of religious experience. The result is a layered and thoughtful exploration of spiritual awakening that never condescends to teen readers, exploring feminism, prayer, and religious ritual, family bonds across cultures and generations, white privilege, LGBTQ inclusion, and grief in authentic and heartfelt ways. VERDICT Religion is rarely handled with such wisdom and depth in YA, or discussed so lovingly. A rich and memorable exploration of faith and family that is a first purchase for all collections. Elizabeth Giles, Lubuto Library Partners, Zambia
Reading Level: 6.0
Interest Level: 7-12

Nadine Jolie Courtney's All-American Muslim Girl is a relevant, relatable story of being caught between two worlds, and the struggles and hard-won joys of finding your place. Allie Abraham has it all going for her--she's a straight-A student, with good friends and a close-knit family, and she's dating popular, sweet Wells Henderson. One problem: Wells's father is Jack Henderson, America's most famous conservative shock jock, and Allie hasn't told Wells that her family is Muslim. It's not like Allie's religion is a secret. It's just that her parents don't practice, and raised her to keep it to herself. But as Allie witnesses Islamophobia in her small town and across the nation, she decides to embrace her faith--study, practice it, and even face misunderstanding for it. Who is Allie, if she sheds the fa ade of the "perfect" all-American girl?


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