The best books about Muslims

Who picked these books? Meet our 80 experts.

80 authors created a book list connected to Muslims, and here are their favorite Muslim books.
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The Girl and the Ghost

By Hanna Alkaf,

Book cover of The Girl and the Ghost

Sinéad O'Hart Author Of The Starspun Web

From the list on middle grade to sweep you into another world.

Who am I?

All my books (I hope!) sweep the reader into another world – it’s one of my favourite themes in the books I love to read, as well as write. When I was about seven, I first read some of the books which would shape my life, including Elidor by Alan Garner and A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine l’Engle, which brought me right out of my own life and into worlds as varied as the frightening interstellar realm of Camazotz and the battlefields of Elidor. I’ve been trying to capture that sense of ‘being swept away’ in my own work ever since.

Sinéad's book list on middle grade to sweep you into another world

Discover why each book is one of Sinéad's favorite books.

Why did Sinéad love this book?

Alkaf’s book is, in her own words, ‘unapologetically Malaysian’. It also sweeps us into a mysterious, spooky, thrilling world, where a pelesit, a type of ghost bound to a person – in this case, a girl named Suraya – shows her that having your own familiar spirit might not always be fun. Pink (the name Suraya gives to her pelesit) risks pulling Suraya and itself into the darkness; can they save themselves, and one another? 

By Hanna Alkaf,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Girl and the Ghost as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

* Chosen as a 2020 Kirkus Prize Finalist for Young Readers' Literature! *

A Malaysian folk tale comes to life in this emotionally layered, chilling middle grade debut, perfect for fans of The Book of Boy and The Jumbies.

I am a dark spirit, the ghost announced grandly. I am your inheritance, your grandmother's legacy. I am yours to command.

Suraya is delighted when her witch grandmother gifts her a pelesit. She names her ghostly companion Pink, and the two quickly become inseparable.

But Suraya doesn't know that pelesits have a dark side-and when Pink's shadows threaten to consume them…

Greetings from Bury Park

By Sarfraz Manzoor,

Book cover of Greetings from Bury Park: Race. Religion. Rock 'n' Roll

Sylvia Vetta Author Of Food of Love: Cooking Up a Life Across Gender, Class and Race

From the list on memoirs which help us understand the world.

Who am I?

For The Oxford Times, I wrote the lives of 120 inspirational people from five continents. My 3 novels are inspired by real lives including the charity founder Nancy Mudenyo Hunt and the artist Qu Leilei, the hero of Andy Cohen’s film Beijing Spring. Stories of 30 not-famous choir members in I Love you All show that we are each unique. My memoir has a particular purpose. I dug deep into my life and my husband Atam’s to reveal the intersection of gender class and race—the barriers that shaped my life and how Atam and I tried to transcend them.

Sylvia's book list on memoirs which help us understand the world

Discover why each book is one of Sylvia's favorite books.

Why did Sylvia love this book?

When I grew up in Luton, to cross the path of anyone who wasn’t white was rare. When Pakistan-born Safraz moved there, in 1974, the population of the industrial town was changing rapidly. Safraz’s memoir recounts with poignant humour, the effects of racism but also the friendships and the MUSIC! It’s been turned into a moving film Blinded by the Light by Gurinder Chadha. Prejudice is not white – it is human. Safraz married Bridget, a union initially disapproved of by his mother and siblings because she was a non-Muslim white woman.

By Sarfraz Manzoor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Greetings from Bury Park as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sarfraz Manzoor was two years old when his family emigrated from Pakistan to join his father in Bury Park, Luton. His teenage years were a constant battle to reconcile being both British and Muslim. But when his best friend introduced him to Bruce Springsteen, his life changed for ever. In this affectionate and timely memoir, Manzoor retraces his journey from the frustrations of his childhood to his reaction to the tragedies of 9/11 and 7/7. Original, darkly tender and wryly amusing, this is an inspiring tribute to the power of music to transcend race and religion and a moving account…

The Night Diary

By Veera Hiranandani,

Book cover of The Night Diary

Irfan Shah Author Of Sigh For A Strange Land

From the list on displaced people.

Who am I?

A combination of things led me to this topic: My father was forced to leave his home in northern India during partition and was therefore a child refugee. In 2016, I was filming in Ukraine and became hugely interested in what was happening there. I have looked for a way to help ever since then. Discovering Monica Stirling’s novel about refugees from East Europe, I realised that here was an opportunity to help give voice to the refugee experience; to help raise funds for Ukraine, and to help bring back to life an incredible story written by an author who deserves to be rediscovered.

Irfan's book list on displaced people

Discover why each book is one of Irfan's favorite books.

Why did Irfan love this book?

A children’s book that adults will enjoy, The Night Diary is the story of twelve-year-old Nisha, half-Muslim, half-Hindu, and caught up in the tragedy of partition – where Pakistan and India separated in the aftermath of India’s independence from Britain.

Nisha is about to experience the disorientation and fear that comes when a family decides to flee for safety. Nisha’s story is told through a series of letters to her mother as she leaves what is now Pakistan, to find a home and an identity. Her predicament – that of a desperate search not just for physical safety but for hope - reminds me of that of Resi, the main character in Sigh For A Strange Land, who wants nothing more than to find that "'tomorrow' is not a threatening word."

By Veera Hiranandani,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked The Night Diary as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's 1947, and India, newly independent of British rule, has been separated into two countries: Pakistan and India. The divide has created much tension between Hindus and Muslims, and hundreds of thousands are killed crossing borders.

Half-Muslim, half-Hindu twelve-year-old Nisha doesn't know where she belongs, or what her country is anymore. When Papa decides it's too dangerous to stay in what is now Pakistan, Nisha and her family become refugees and embark first by train but later on foot to reach her new home. The journey is long, difficult, and dangerous, and after losing her mother as a baby, Nisha…

China's Forgotten People

By Nick Holdstock,

Book cover of China's Forgotten People: Xinjiang, Terror and the Chinese State

Grayson Slover Author Of Middle Country: An American Student Visits China's Uyghur Prison-State

From the list on the Uyghur Genocide.

Who am I?

I traveled to Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in the summer of 2019, where I saw for myself many of the tools of surveillance and control that the Chinese Communist Party has used to turn the region into an open-air prison. Since returning to the United States, I have tried to draw attention to the Uyghur genocide through my published articles and through my book, Middle Country, where I tell the story of the Uyghur genocide by weaving facts, history, and analysis into a narrative account of the week I spent in Xinjiang. I hope that my book can make this profoundly complex and multifaceted issue more accessible to the average person.

Grayson's book list on the Uyghur Genocide

Discover why each book is one of Grayson's favorite books.

Why did Grayson love this book?

This book provides the most accessible account of the relationship between the Chinese Communist Party and the native peoples of Xinjiang. Holdstock draws on his own experience living in Xinjiang to show how the CCP’s failure to recognize the genuine grievances of the native peoples of the region helped to drive the terrorism problem that the CCP claims to be addressing today through its genocidal policies.

By Nick Holdstock,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked China's Forgotten People as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After isolated terrorist incidents in 2015, the Chinese leadership has cracked down hard on Xinjiang and its Uyghurs. Today, there are thought to be up to a million Muslims held in 're-education camps' in the Xinjiang region of North-West China. One of the few Western commentators to have lived in the region, journalist Nick Holdstock travels into the heart of the province and reveals the Uyghur story as one of repression, hardship and helplessness. China's Forgotten People explains why repression of the Muslim population is on the rise in the world's most powerful one-party state. This updated and revised edition…


By Jalal Al-Din Rumi,

Book cover of Rumi: The Path of Love

Wendy-O Matik Author Of Redefining Our Relationships: Guidelines for Responsible Open Relationships

From the list on to ignite the revolution and smash patriarchy.

Who am I?

As a rebellious woman who is passionate about words and the revolutionary force of books, I know the power of stories. Stories are the seeds that give life to your purpose. Stories give you a reason to fight the good fight, care about something bigger than yourself, and want to be a part of social justice and positive change. The daily grind can kick you down, but a good story can remind you that there's still time to rise up, speak truth to power, help others less fortunate, and commit to what you value most. The books that I’m recommending are meant to be your personal guide to what really matters most in life to you.

Wendy-O's book list on to ignite the revolution and smash patriarchy

Discover why each book is one of Wendy-O's favorite books.

Why did Wendy-O love this book?

There can be no revolution without love. The 13th-century Persian poet, Sufi philosopher, and Muslim scholar Rumi is the best guide to put you on the road to an open heart and to keep you in constant connection with our shared humanity. He is the ultimate lover because his words lift off the page and teach you how to be vulnerable and courageous with your heart.

By Jalal Al-Din Rumi,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rumi as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Seven centuries after his death, the romantic poetry of Jelaluddin Rumi is presented here with 50 cards with a quotation from a Rumi poem on one side and a colour work of Middle Eastern Sufi or Islamic are on the other. The accompanying book has further illustrated selections and a life of Rumi.

Book cover of From Muslim Fortress to Christian Castle: Social and Cultural Change in Medieval Spain

Aleksander Pluskowski Author Of The Archaeology of the Prussian Crusade: Holy War and Colonisation

From the list on the cultural impact of the crusades.

Who am I?

I was born in London, but growing up in a Polish family ensured that I was well aware of the history of the Teutonic Order. As a post-doctoral researcher in Cambridge, I was fortunate enough to gain access to archaeological material from the magnificent castle at Malbork in north Poland, the Order’s medieval headquarters. That moment really spurred my interest in the Northern Crusades, after which I spent a decade working across the eastern Baltic. I’ve also had the opportunity to excavate medieval frontier sites at both ends of the Mediterranean. As an archaeologist, I always found the lived experiences of these societies far more interesting than the traditional military histories written about them.

Aleksander's book list on the cultural impact of the crusades

Discover why each book is one of Aleksander's favorite books.

Why did Aleksander love this book?

When visiting the spectacular medieval monuments of Spain and Portugal that emblematize centuries of Islamic and Christian rule, it is impossible to ignore their surrounding landscapes, often dramatic, always thought-provoking. They remain powerful inspirations for my own work, and Thomas Glick’s wide-ranging book, which spans the entirety of the Iberian Middle Ages, stands out as a landmark of Anglophone scholarship on medieval Spain which uses the landscape as a fundamental lens on cultural change. He elegantly blends archaeological and geographic evidence with written sources to place the transformation of the landscapes of al-Andalus at the heart of understanding the implications of Christian ‘feudal’ rule. Whilst our knowledge of both Islamic and Christian cultural landscapes has advanced since this book was published, it remains a bold and thoughtful overview.

By Thomas F. Glick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked From Muslim Fortress to Christian Castle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This analysis of early Spanish history draws on a wide range of sources, archaeological as well as written. Thomas F. Glick explores the history of Spain from the Roman province, through the Visigothic and Arab Conquests, to the Christian Reconquest and reorganization of society in the 13th century. The author argues that three key transitions took place in culture and landscape: the development of castles which marked the move from the Spanish "dark" to "middle" age, the transition to feudalism, and finally the transition from Islamic to Christian Spain as a result of the Reconquest. He shows how these transitions…

Book cover of Shared Stories, Rival Tellings: Early Encounters of Jews, Christians, and Muslims

John Tolan Author Of Faces of Muhammad: Western Perceptions of the Prophet of Islam from the Middle Ages to Today

From the list on making you realize you don’t know what religion is.

Who am I?

In the 1980s, I was living in Spain, teaching high school. On weekends and vacations, I traveled throughout the country, fascinated with the remnants of its flourishing medieval civilization, where Jews, Christians, and Muslims mingled. When I later became a historian, I focused on the rich history of Jewish-Christian-Muslim contact in Spain and throughout the Mediterranean. I also wanted to understand conflict and prejudice, particularly the historical roots of antisemitism and islamophobia in Europe. I have increasingly realized that classical religious texts need to be reread and contextualized and that we need to rethink our ideas about religion and religious conflict.

John's book list on making you realize you don’t know what religion is

Discover why each book is one of John's favorite books.

Why did John love this book?

In this book, Robert Gregg focuses on the narratives around a number of key figures in the sacred history of the Judaism, Christianity and Islam. They are “shared stories” because these various writers agreed on most (but not all) of the biographical details of these figures. Indeed, the “rival tellings” often reflect intimate knowledge of each other: the Jewish stories about Mary and Jesus are implicit responses to (and refutations of) Christian beliefs, and the Mary of the Qur’an is a rebuke to both Christian and Jewish versions. Retelling and reinterpreting these stories is a key activity in the construction and delineation of communities of the faithful, whether defined broadly (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) or in their narrower components (ascetic movements within each of the three traditions, rival Christian churches, Sunnism vs Shiism, etc.). If telling stories can be a way to build bridges, it is also, as Gregg shows, a…

By Robert C. Gregg,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Shared Stories, Rival Tellings as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

While existing scholarship informs us about early contact between Christians, Muslims, and Jews, the nature of that interaction, and how it developed over time, is still often misunderstood. Robert Gregg emphasizes that there was both mutual curiosity, since all three religions had ancestral traditions and a commanding God in common, and also wary competitiveness, as each group was compelled to sharpen its identity against the other two. Faced with the overlap of
many scriptural stories, they were eager to defend the claim that they alone were God's preferred people.

In Shared Stories, Rival Tellings, Gregg performs a comparative investigation of…

For Prophet and Tsar

By Robert D. Crews,

Book cover of For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia

Stefan B. Kirmse Author Of The Lawful Empire: Legal Change and Cultural Diversity in Late Tsarist Russia

From the list on how cultural diversity sustained the Russian Empire.

Who am I?

You can experience Russia by exploring the churches and palaces of St Petersburg and Moscow. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s not my approach. For me, it has always made more sense to look at the largest country on earth from its edges, the distant mountains, steppes, forests, and waters that surround it. For three decades, I have travelled across this space, studied its languages, written books and articles about it. And I have tried to look through the lens of the diverse peoples and cultures that have been part of Russian history, for better or worse. The rise and fall of the Russian Empire are unthinkable without them.    

Stefan's book list on how cultural diversity sustained the Russian Empire

Discover why each book is one of Stefan's favorite books.

Why did Stefan love this book?

This book was a milestone in the study of tsarist Russia as a multiethnic and multireligious empire, especially its large Muslim population.

By the 2000s, we had become used to thinking that the Russian Empire had suppressed or ignored its religious minorities who, in turn, had avoided state institutions as much as possible. Crews’ book shattered that idea.

Exploring court cases and other disputes across time and space, he boldly argued that Muslims turned to the state as protector of their faith and that Islam became a pillar of Russian imperial policy. Many scholars have attacked his argument since then, partly for good reasons.

And yet, his contribution has proven to be more important and long-lived than those of most of his critics. On top, it’s a wonderful read. 

By Robert D. Crews,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked For Prophet and Tsar as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Russia occupies a unique position in the Muslim world. Unlike any other non-Islamic state, it has ruled Muslim populations for over 500 years. Though Russia today is plagued by its unrelenting war in Chechnya, Russia's approach toward Islam once yielded stability. In stark contrast to the popular 'clash of civilisations' theory that sees Islam inevitably in conflict with the West, Robert D. Crews reveals the remarkable ways in which Russia constructed an empire with broad Muslim support. In the 18th Century, Catherine the Great inaugurated a policy of religious toleration that made Islam an essential pillar of Orthodox Russia. For…

Green Deen

By Ibrahim Abdul-Matin,

Book cover of Green Deen: What Islam Teaches about Protecting the Planet

Matthew D. LaPlante Author Of Superlative: The Biology of Extremes

From the list on for feeling awestruck about the world.

Who am I?

I spent the first decade of my journalistic career focused on calamity, malevolence, and suffering. By my early thirties, I wasn’t just struggling to feel happy about the world — I was struggling to feel anything at all. It was an encounter with awe — a visit to an aspen colony in central Utah that is the world’s largest known singular organism — that jarred me from this increasingly colorless world. As an author, teacher, researcher, and radio host, I strive to connect others with a sense of wonder — and I feel very fortunate that so many other science communicators continually leave me feeling awestruck for this amazing world.  

Matthew's book list on for feeling awestruck about the world

Discover why each book is one of Matthew's favorite books.

Why did Matthew love this book?

It would be easy to pass off this work as a book about the environment for Muslims. And I suppose it is that—an Islamic analog for the growing list of books that implore Christians to view environmental stewardship as an essential tenet of their faith, from authors like Sandra Richter and Fletcher Harper. 

Abdul-Matin's work struck me in another way: As an expanding aperture into the faith of billions of people across this planet. Reading it was reminiscent of my first experience with Benjamin Hoff's The Tao of Pooh, which similarly offered me an accessible entryway to a religion I'd previously known very little about, and which permitted me to then dive deeper through other, more challenging works. I read Hoff's book for the first time as a teen-aged sailor onboard an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf, and I have read it several times since. I am certain that…

By Ibrahim Abdul-Matin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Green Deen as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Muslim environmentalist explores the fascinating intersection of environmentalism and Islam.
Muslims are compelled by their religion to praise the Creator and to care for their community. But what is not widely known is that there are deep and long-standing connections between Islamic teachings and environmentalism. In this groundbreaking book, Ibrahim Abdul-Matin draws on research, scripture, and interviews with Muslim Americans to trace Islam’s preoccupation with humankind’s collective role as stewards of the Earth. 
Abdul-Matin points out that the Prophet Muhammad declared “the Earth is a mosque.” Using the concept of Deen, which means “path” or “way” in Arabic, Abdul-Matin…

Night of the Moon

By Hena Khan, Julie Paschkis (illustrator),

Book cover of Night of the Moon: A Muslim Holiday Story

Theresa Heine Author Of Chandra's Magic Light: A Story in Nepal

From the list on the sun and moon from around the world.

Who am I?

I'm a British writer of children’s books and poetry. The books I've chosen are picture books with vibrant illustrations, instantly pulling the reader into the story. The fascination children have with the sky, the planets, and stars, I discovered with my own children, and now my grandchildren, who gaze, star-struck, at the moon through the windows and doorways. As an ex-teacher I've found that books with a story will appeal to children who are discovering cultures other than their own. There are many picture books with sun and moon stories like the one in Chandra’s Magic Light, and I've chosen those I find particularly appealing, as a mother, grandmother, and teacher.

Theresa's book list on the sun and moon from around the world

Discover why each book is one of Theresa's favorite books.

Why did Theresa love this book?

This is a warm, family story about the moon. Yasmeen watches every night as the crescent moon gradually grows and the family takes part in the celebration of Ramadam. When the moon has reached its full size it starts to shrink, until finally, Yasmeen can no longer pick it out in the dark sky. We share Yasmeen’s excitement as the moon waxes and wanes, before becomes a sliver in the sky and the night of the moon has arrived. Eid!! Yasmeen and her family celebrate with relatives, friends, and neighbors, sharing traditional food and exchanging gifts. Ramadan takes place after the sun has gone down and the pictures are in deep blues and greens. When Eid arrives the pictures are in vibrant reds and oranges, and are filled with people celebrating. This is a family story as well as containing information about a Muslim celebration. I would strongly recommend it…

By Hena Khan, Julie Paschkis (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Night of the Moon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now in paperback, this sweet tale follows Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani-American girl, as she celebrates the Muslim holidays of Ramadan, "The Night of the Moon" (Chaand Raat), and Eid. With lush illustrations that evoke Islamic art, this beautiful story offers a peek into modern Muslim culture-and into the ancient roots of its most cherished traditions.

Call Me American

By Abdi Nor Iftin,

Book cover of Call Me American: A Memoir

Shugri Said Salh Author Of The Last Nomad: Coming of Age in the Somali Desert

From the list on bringing other cultures to life.

Who am I?

I am at heart a storyteller, with a special interest in archiving and weaving the tales of my people to give you insight into a culture that is quite different from yours. Like an archaeologist digging a forgotten world, I want to bring these stories to life in the form of words. After a long day of animal herding and chores, my family and I would sit by the fire in a vast, open desert covered in blackness, and share century-old stories. My big ears consumed these stories like a thirsty desert after a long drought, so I could one day share this library of wisdom with others.

Shugri's book list on bringing other cultures to life

Discover why each book is one of Shugri's favorite books.

Why did Shugri love this book?

Iftin survived against incredible odds on his journey to America. His book picks up where mine left off and gives me insight into what happened after I fled Mogadishu with my family. Iftin describes in such vivid images the struggles he went through at the peak of the Somali civil war. Many of the places I roamed in Mogadishu as a teen were either dilapidated or turned into makeshift prison cells by Islamists. Iftin described an incident where he and a girl he loved were flogged for daring to show love outwardly. My home, where beautiful Somali women wearing colorful garments swung their hips with complete freedom as they walked to market, turned into a place and a people I no longer recognize.

By Abdi Nor Iftin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Call Me American as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Abdi Nor Iftin first fell in love with America from afar. As a child, he learned English by listening to American pop and watching action films starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. When U.S. marines landed in Mogadishu to take on the warlords, Abdi cheered the arrival of these Americans, who seemed as heroic as those of the movies.

Sporting American clothes and dance moves, he became known around Mogadishu as Abdi American, but when the radical Islamist group al-Shabaab rose to power in 2006, it became dangerous to celebrate Western culture. Desperate to make a living, Abdi used his language skills to…

Letters to a Young Muslim

By Omar Saif Ghobash,

Book cover of Letters to a Young Muslim

Tom Fletcher Author Of Ten Survival Skills for a World in Flux

From the list on navigating an unstable world.

Who am I?

I’m a recovering ambassador, now running an Oxford college. After almost 25 years in diplomacy, including working in no 10 for three prime ministers, I realised that education is upstream diplomacy. If we are to find a way through the challenges ahead – from climate change to pandemics and economic crisis to artificial intelligence – we must act, urgently, to upgrade why, what, and how we learn. I set out to ask hundreds of the most inspirational people on the planet what they wished they had known, and what they would share with the next generation if this was their last day. 

Tom's book list on navigating an unstable world

Discover why each book is one of Tom's favorite books.

Why did Tom love this book?

In this gently articulated yet profoundly challenging book, Omar offers advice to his son and reflects on the assassination of his father. He challenges us about the dangers of certainty and the importance of liberty of thought and speech. “I want you to beware of anyone who tells you, with utter conviction, what you should think.” The letters are to his son, but the contents are great truths for all of us. 

By Omar Saif Ghobash,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Letters to a Young Muslim as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In a series of personal letters to his sons, Omar Saif Ghobash offers a short and highly readable manifesto that tackles our current global crisis with the training of an experienced diplomat and the personal responsibility of a father. Today's young Muslims will be tomorrow's leaders, and yet too many are vulnerable to extremist propaganda that seems omnipresent in our technological age. The burning question, Ghobash argues, is how moderate Muslims can unite to find a voice that is true to Islam while actively and productively engaging in the modern world. What does it mean to be a good Muslim?…

Love God, Heal Earth

By Sally G. Bingham,

Book cover of Love God, Heal Earth: 21 Leading Religious Voices Speak Out on Our Sacred Duty to Protect the Environment

Leah D. Schade Author Of Rooted and Rising: Voices of Courage in a Time of Climate Crisis

From the list on connecting religion and nature.

Who am I?

The Rev. Dr. Leah D. Schade is the Associate Professor of Preaching and Worship at Lexington Theological Seminary in Kentucky.  An ordained Lutheran minister since 2000, Leah has written five books, including three focusing on environment and faith. She has served as an anti-fracking and climate activist, community organizer, and advocate for environmental justice issues, She’s also the “EcoPreacher” blogger for She has recently launched a partnership with the Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development to create a monthly resource called EcoPreacher 1-2-3 for busy pastors wanting to address environmental issues in their sermons.

Leah's book list on connecting religion and nature

Discover why each book is one of Leah's favorite books.

Why did Leah love this book?

Sally Bingham founded and served as president of Interfaith Power & Light, one of the most important interreligious organizations addressing climate and environmental crises. For this 2009 book, she invited twenty religious leaders from a myriad of traditions, including Buddhist, Evangelical Christian, Unitarian-Universalist, Muslim, and Judaism, to name a few. Though the book is more than a decade old, their reflections are timeless. And they give us a snapshot of what religious leaders were saying about ecology and faith at a time when environmental awareness was still struggling to gain traction.

By Sally G. Bingham,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Love God, Heal Earth as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Foremost religious leaders from diverse faith communities respond to the most controversial question of our time: Can we save the earth? The answer could hinge on the phenomenon of the fast-growing interfaith religious environmental movement. The author makes the case for environmental stewardship that cuts across old divisions of faith and politics. She presents 20 fellow religious leaders and eminent scholars (from rabbis to evangelicals to Catholics, Muslims and Buddhists) each contributing an original essay-chapter, with personal stories of awakening to the urgent need for environmental awareness and action. From all parts of the religious and political spectrum, they come…

Death of a Pilgrim

By A. D. Thorne,

Book cover of Death of a Pilgrim

Lisa Rose Wright Author Of Plum, Courgette & Green Bean Tart

From the list on Galicia Spain.

Who am I?

I have lived in beautiful green Galicia for 14 years and am passionately in love with this undiscovered area of Spain. Whilst writing my own travelogue memoirs, I have avidly researched my adopted country and love nothing more than to travel the area, discovering new delights round each corner. I have discovered that Galicia is not just ‘that wet bit of Spain’ and is in fact a whole world away from the Mediterranean costas of the south with its own language – the language of poets, its own identity, and its very own being. Here I have tried to choose books I feel demonstrate that uniqueness, that special quality which makes Galicia extraordinary.

Lisa's book list on Galicia Spain

Discover why each book is one of Lisa's favorite books.

Why did Lisa love this book?

This series of murder mysteries set along the pilgrim’s way, El Camino de Santiago ought to do for Galicia what Montalbano did for Sicily, with beautiful scenery, Galician food, intrigue, and of course, suspicious death.

The stories are interesting and clever but for me it’s the sense of place which really draws me to these books. The author writes with a love for the area which comes alive through her descriptive prose so I can see the places clearly in my mind as I read. Thankfully there are far less murders in Galicia than in A D Thorne’s books but I don’t mind a body or two when the setting is so beautiful.

By A. D. Thorne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Death of a Pilgrim as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two years previously Richard's quick thinking and brave action had prevented a bomb blast which would have killed schoolchildren and politicians. A second blast injured him and caused the death of his wife. Unable, physically and emotionally, to continue his police career, he retreated to a cottage in rural Galicia and opened up a small gallery to sell his watercolour paintings, putting his past life firmly behind him. One morning, he finds an English pilgrim murdered in front of his gallery. Once her identity becomes known he is forced to face his past and the truth he has been running…

Muslims and Citizens

By Ian Coller,

Book cover of Muslims and Citizens: Islam, Politics, and the French Revolution

Christine Haynes Author Of Our Friends the Enemies: The Occupation of France After Napoleon

From the list on the French Revolution from a wide range of perspectives.

Who am I?

In my research and teaching, I have long been fascinated with the effects of the French Revolution on France, Europe, and the broader world.  In my most recent book, Our Friends the Enemies, I sought to examine the aftermath of the wars provoked by the Revolution, which lasted (with only two short breaks) from 1792 to 1815.  In particular, I wanted to reconstruct the story—which had long been overlooked by historians—of the occupation of France by the Allies who defeated Napoleon.  Lasting from 1815 to 1818, this occupation was the first modern peacekeeping mission, with profound consequences for the history of France and Europe in the nineteenth century and beyond.

Christine's book list on the French Revolution from a wide range of perspectives

Discover why each book is one of Christine's favorite books.

Why did Christine love this book?

Similarly contributing to a broadening of perspective on the French Revolution, Ian Coller’s new book examines the way in which Muslims figured into the history of this world-historical event.  Making creative use of scattered and fragmentary sources on Muslims in eighteenth-century France and its empire, he shows how they were central to discussions of the “universalism” of the rights guaranteed by the revolutionary government. While this government was initially supported by much of the Muslim world, it ultimately undermined Muslim support—and the republic itself—by attempting to impose its vision of universal “liberty” in the invasion of Egypt in 1798, which brought the young general Napoleon Bonaparte to power.

By Ian Coller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Muslims and Citizens as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A groundbreaking study of the role of Muslims in eighteenth-century France

"This elegant, braided history of Muslims and French citizenship is urgently needed. It will be a 'must read' for students of the French Revolution and anyone interested in modern France."- Carla Hesse, University of California, Berkeley

From the beginning, French revolutionaries imagined their transformation as a universal one that must include Muslims, Europe's most immediate neighbors. They believed in a world in which Muslims could and would be French citizens, but they disagreed violently about how to implement their visions of universalism and accommodate religious and social difference. Muslims,…

Book cover of Deport, Deprive, Extradite: 21st Century State Extremism

Arun Kundnani Author Of The Muslims Are Coming: Islamophobia, Extremism, and the Domestic War on Terror

From the list on racism in Britain.

Who am I?

Kundnani writes about racial capitalism and Islamophobia, surveillance and political violence, and Black radical movements. He is the author of The Muslims are Coming! Islamophobia, extremism, and the domestic War on Terror and The End of Tolerance: racism in 21st century Britain, which was selected as a New Statesman book of the year. He has written for the Nation, the Guardian, the Washington Post, Vice, and The Intercept. Born in London, he moved to New York in 2010. A former editor of the journal Race & Class, he was miseducated at Cambridge University, and holds a PhD from London Metropolitan University. He has been an Open Society fellow and a scholar-in-residence at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York Public Library.

Arun's book list on racism in Britain

Discover why each book is one of Arun's favorite books.

Why did Arun love this book?

Over the last two decades, there has been a vast expansion in the legal powers available to government ministers, civil servants, and police, intelligence, and border officers. Directed primarily at those suspected of being involved in Islamic extremism, criminal gangs, unlawful migration, and asylum-seeking, these powers are inseparable from the racist stereotypes that accompany them. Kapoor’s book precisely, relentlessly, and fearlessly reveals an official but unacknowledged pattern of racist policy-making. She highlights how the home secretary can, without judicial authorization, cancel someone’s British citizenship, even if they were born in the UK – a power that is only ever used on those who are not white. This, she says, is “extremism” at the heart of government.

By Nisha Kapoor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Deport, Deprive, Extradite as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The extradition of terror suspects reveals the worst features of the security state
In 2012 five Muslim men--Babar Ahmad, Talha Ahsan, Khalid al-Fawwaz, Adel Abdul Bary, and Abu Hamza--were extradited from Britain to the US to face terrorism-related charges. Fahad Hashmi was deported a few years before. Abid Naseer and Haroon Aswat would follow shortly. They were subject to pre-trial incarceration for up to seventeen years, police brutality, secret trials, secret evidence, long-term detention in solitary confinement, citizenship deprivation and more. Deport, Deprive, Extradite draws on their stories as starting points to explore what they illuminate about the disciplinary features…

In My Mosque

By M.O. Yuksel, Hatem Aly (illustrator),

Book cover of In My Mosque

Aya Khalil Author Of The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story

From the list on empower Muslim children.

Who am I?

I am a freelance journalist and have written on many topics related to Arabs, Muslims and immigrants. I also teach an intercultural communication class at the University of Toledo and have taught Arab culture in the past. I have a master’s degree in Education with a focus on teaching English as a second language.

Aya's book list on empower Muslim children

Discover why each book is one of Aya's favorite books.

Why did Aya love this book?

I love In My Mosque by M.O. Yuksel and illustrated by Hatem Aly because of how authentic, vibrant and beautiful it is. I love how peaceful it feels and the beautiful lyrics describing the beauty of Mosques. I also love the back matter with so many different Mosques featured!

By M.O. Yuksel, Hatem Aly (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In My Mosque as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Step in and discover all the rituals and wonder of the mosque in this lyrical debut picture book from M. O. Yuksel, with gorgeous artwork from New York Times bestselling illustrator Hatem Aly. A great conversation starter in the home or classroom, this book is perfect for fans of All Are Welcome and The Proudest Blue.

No matter who you are or where you're from, everyone is welcome here. From grandmothers reading lines of the Qur'an and the imam telling stories of living as one, to meeting new friends and learning to help others, mosques are centers for friendship, community,…

Nine, Ten

By Nora Raleigh Baskin,

Book cover of Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story

Jacqueline Jules Author Of Smoke at the Pentagon: Poems to Remember

From the list on for ages 8 to 12 about September 11th.

Who am I?

I am the author of over fifty books for young readers including the Zapato Power series, the Sofia Martinez series, My Name is Hamburger, Never Say a Mean Word Again, and Tag Your Dreams: Poems of Play and Persistence. On September 11, 2001, I was living in Arlington, Virginia and working as a librarian. Like anyone else who lived through that tragic day, September 11th evokes strong memories for me. Yet I know that subsequent generations have little knowledge of that day, even those who live in Arlington, where the Pentagon is located.  By recognizing the wounds of the past, we can help young readers understand the present. 

Jacqueline's book list on for ages 8 to 12 about September 11th

Discover why each book is one of Jacqueline's favorite books.

Why did Jacqueline love this book?

This novel follows four adolescents in the 48 hours preceding September 11, 2001.

The characters are two girls and two boys living in different parts of the United States in very different families. By fully depicting the lives of each character before the world abruptly changed, Baskin shows us how a watershed event changes one’s perspective forever.

My favorite moment comes at the end when a character remembers “that day, a year ago, when nothing else was important to her except fitting in.” Without violence or direct loss to the main characters, Baskin brings home the point that September 11th affected Americans from all across the country.

In the face of tragedy, Baskin shows us how we are all interconnected.

By Nora Raleigh Baskin,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Nine, Ten as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the critically acclaimed author of Anything But Typical comes a "tense...and thought-provoking" (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) look at the days leading up to the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and how that day impacted the lives of four middle schoolers.

Ask anyone: September 11, 2001, was serene and lovely, a perfect day-until a plane struck the World Trade Center.

But right now it is a few days earlier, and four kids in different parts of the country are going about their lives. Sergio, who lives in Brooklyn, is struggling to come to terms with the absentee father he…

In Good Faith

By Claire M. Gilbert,

Book cover of In Good Faith: Arabic Translation and Translators in Early Modern Spain

Brian Catlos Author Of Infidel Kings and Unholy Warriors: Faith, Power, and Violence in the Age of Crusade and Jihad

From the list on the multi-religious Mediterranean.

Who am I?

Having lived in North America, Europe, and the Middle East, and visited many, many more countries, I am a traveler first and foremost. I travel because I like getting to know different types of people and seeing how they live and how they think about the world and about their place in it. As a historian, I can travel back in time to places even more exotic than one can visit today. My favorite place is the Mediterranean world in the Middle Ages – an exciting environment where Christians, Muslims, and Jews from Africa, Europe, and Asia, came together sometimes in conflict, but as often as not in collaboration or friendship.

Brian's book list on the multi-religious Mediterranean

Discover why each book is one of Brian's favorite books.

Why did Brian love this book?

Gilbert digs beneath the surface to uncover the hidden history of the people who really made things happen in the Spanish Empire. In Good Faith demonstrates that during the “Morisco century” (1492–1614) the Arabic language remained vital and of crucial importance to Spain’s colonial enterprise despite its official elimination and social marginalization. She focuses on Spanish-Arabic translators who were drawn from among the Morisco elite, and who found agency and accrued benefits for themselves and their families as well as their larger communities, by performing this crucial service for the Spanish Habsburgs.

It is a study that connects the Iberian Peninsula not only to North Africa, but to the broader European, Mediterranean, and Atlantic worlds at the dawn of the age of European colonialism and Orientalism. 

By Claire M. Gilbert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In Good Faith as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The century that followed the fall of Granada at the end of 1491 and the subsequent consolidation of Christian power over the Iberian Peninsula was marked by the introduction of anti-Arabic legislation and the development of hostile cultural norms affecting Arabic speakers. Yet as Spanish institutions of power first restricted and then eliminated Arabic language use, marginalizing Arabic-speaking communities, officially sanctioned translation to and from Arabic played an increasingly crucial role in brokering the administration of the growing Spanish empire and its overseas territories. The move on the peninsula from a regime of legal pluralism to one of religious and…

Planting Friendship

By Callie Metler, Shirin Rahman, Melissa Stoller, Kate Talbot (illustrator)

Book cover of Planting Friendship: Peace, Salaam, Shalom

Ellen Leventhal Author Of A Flood of Kindness

From the list on the healing power of kindness.

Who am I?

I am a teacher, writer, mother, and grandmother who sees the debilitating effects of meanness and the healing effects of kindness daily. In case that isn’t reason enough for writing A Flood of Kindness, I’m also what some call “A Floodie.” Like my character’s home flooded, so did mine. As devastating as it was, the kindness of others was overwhelming. I spent time with children whose homes also flooded. Aside from losing material things, it is easy to feel powerless. Like myself, I found that the children began their healing when they were able to give back, even in very small ways. I knew this had to be my book. 

Ellen's book list on the healing power of kindness

Discover why each book is one of Ellen's favorite books.

Why did Ellen love this book?

I love the sweet kindness of this book, and of course, the overarching message that with heart and compassion, we can build bridges connecting us together. This book focuses on three girls of different faiths who meet on the first day of school. They help each other through difficulties without ever thinking about their differences. What makes this book unique is that the three authors are each from the same faith tradition of the girls about which they write. How does this book demonstrate the healing power of kindness? Although there is no major trauma in this story itself, I think that perhaps we can emulate these children and begin to heal the world itself with kindness. 

By Callie Metler, Shirin Rahman, Melissa Stoller, Kate Talbot (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Planting Friendship as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When they meet on the first day of school, three girls realize they are different from each other - Molly is Christian, Savera is Muslim, and Hannah is Jewish. Through a class planting project, the girls' friendship blossoms, and they learn they are more alike than they thought. Written by three women authors from the same faith traditions as the girls in the story, this book brings more kindness and understanding into the world.