Muhiima’s Quest by Rahma Rodaah is a sweet book about a young girl’s tenth birthday. In Muhiima’s family, they don’t usually celebrate birthdays, so Muhiima thinks it very unusual when her mother hands her a map and gives her a quest on her tenth birthday. The map leads her to all the different places she commonly goes to, like her father’s bookstore, her aunts henna salon, the masjid where her Quran teacher is, the basketball courts where her Uncle is, and her grandparent’s house. Each person gives her a box to save until she gets home and a piece of advice for her life. When she reaches her home again, everyone important in her life has gathered for a celebration and she opens the boxes to find a pearl in each one. Her mother strings them together and gives her the necklace, telling her that all the people that care about her gave her “pearls of wisdom” to help her succeed in life.
I love the play on words with the “pearls” and my kids really enjoyed reading about each step of the quest and finding out the end result. The lessons are that it takes a village to raise a child, and that each person in Muhiima’s life plays an important role in her personality and character. It is a sweet rite of passage story and is sure to resonate with young muslim children.
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