Written by: Saira Mir
Illustrated by: Aaliya Jaleel
For ages: 8-13 years
Topics Covered: Muslim Women, Trailblazers, Historical Figures, Self-Empowerment, Feminism, Sports, Culture & Identity, Global Community, Own Voices.
This book is a lovely book, almost anthology-like, of 18 Muslim girls (and women) that are changing the world and blazing trails. Some are well-known public figures like Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar, and champion fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad. Others, like Malcolm X’s daughter Ilyasah and comedian Negin Farsad might be less known. The beauty of this book is that the short single page profiles of these strong and intelligent women is that they span the globe and professional career market. Sports, fashion, legislation, and STEM. These women are fantastic role models for any job aspirations!
Muslim Girls Rise is a wonderful addition to any bookshelf, and having these women as inspiration to pursue one’s own interests and dreams. Unfortunately also, Islamophobia is so prevalent that this book can also serve as a line of defense. Collecting stories of strength and resilience helps a person develop their own, and have individuals to look up to in times of hardship or perhaps deciding on what career trajectory to take. Either way, these short stories will inspire any reader to change the world in their own way!
About the Author & the Illustrator:
SARIA MIR is a Muslim physician from Washington, DC, who has searched far and wide for books to help her daughter find feminist role models who share her heritage. Saira wrote Muslim Girls Rise for her, and hopes to share it with other children eager to learn more about these extraordinary, path-breaking women.
AALIYA JALEEL is a freelance illustrator, character designer, and visual development artist. She is currently majoring in animation at the University of Texas at Dallas with plans to work as a visual development artist after graduation.