|Like the moon loves the sky
Author: Khan, Hena
Illustrations and prose inspired by the Quran celebrate a mother's love and hopes for her child.
Kirkus Reviews (02/01/20)
School Library Journal (02/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 02/01/2020 PreS-K—A bedtime story that reassures children that they are loved. This book depicts parents' aspirations and desires for their children at different stages of life. Each page starts with the phrase "Inshallah," which means "if God wills it" in Arabic. Although these hopes and wishes are inspired by the Quran, they portray parents' universal desires for their children, such as "Inshallah you feel safe, like all children should," "Inshallah you are kind to those most in need." Each page depicts how different stages of a child's life add new expectations and hopes for parents, such as "Inshallah you reach out to make new friends" and "Inshallah you speak truth and work for its sake." The illustrations expand across each spread along with one simple sentence and showcase Arabic calligraphy as art pieces on the walls. The artwork is colored with matte tones and has a two-dimensional feel. VERDICT A book for Muslim families to introduce religious traditions to young children and for non-Muslim families who wish to teach diversity and religious acceptance.—Noureen Qadir-Jafar, Syosset Library, NY - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 02/15/2020 A foreword from the author explains that the word inshallah translates to “God willing,” and while it is familiar to Muslims, it has universal significance. The word anchors Khan’s meditative text, which reads like a prayer from parent to child, delivered in sweet, rhyming couplets of direct address. “Inshallah you are all / that is gentle and good. / Inshallah you feel safe, / like all children should.” A single, soft line appears on each spread, all centering on the same child as she ages from page to page—having a picnic, making friends at school, learning how to swim—always in the company of family or friends. Illustrator Khan’s sweeping oranges and blues, all beautiful extensions of the family’s skin and hair tones, make a stunning visual statement celebrating the values of community, wonder, and love. The book leaves us with the image of the mother reading in bed to her child—an appropriate sendoff. This love letter, a rarity in its lightness of hand, is one that parents, especially Arabs, will cherish bringing into their bedtime routines. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.