Once Upon an Eid: Stories of Hope and Joy by 15 Muslim Voices

Amulet. May 2020. 272p. ed. by S. K. Ali, & Aisha Saeed, eds. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781419740831; ebk. ISBN 9781683358039.
Gr 3-6–This heartfelt collection of Eid (both Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha) short stories, edited by Ali (Saints & Misfits) and Saeed (Amal Unbound), compiles the work of 15 #OwnVoices creators and provides beautiful, essential narratives about Muslim culture. Regardless of readers’ familiarity with Eid or the Muslim faith, they will feel embraced in each and every story. The tales are artfully arranged, beginning with happy and light fare before wading into heavier, more complex topics, and ending on laugh-out-loud perfection. A graphic novel–esque intermission provides a delightful surprise. The narratives here are wonderfully diverse in setting, familial structure, race, culture, and experience. The collection not only celebrates and shares Eid, but skillfully teaches readers, addressing issues like racism and prejudice with a light but effective touch. With many varied contributors, the stories read well as a whole or individually, and many have significant appeal well beyond the target audience.
VERDICT A joyous title that radiates love. This much-needed collection is recommended as a first purchase for all libraries.

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