Farhana Zia is a critically acclaimed children’s book author. Her stories blend humor and tradition, memories and contemporary moments. A former elementary school teacher, she currently keeps busy writing, substitute teaching and taking leisurely walks in her neighborhood. Ms. Zia enjoys sharing her work with schools, libraries, book stores and other cultural and educational institutions. Her book readings and her interactive, lively presentations bring her audience up close and personal with the exciting, exotic world of her characters while creating multicultural awareness and sensitivities in the young viewers.
Farhana Zia was born in Hyderabad, India and immigrated to the United States in 1967. She lives in Massachusetts. Here’s her website: http://www.fziastories.com/.
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.
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