Although the author’s agenda was obvious throughout the book (educating the masses that not all Muslims are terrorists), I did not find it to be preachy or heavy-handed. Being a follower of Islam in a post-9/11 world cannot be easy, and Amal’s struggle to get through each day without being tormented by ignorance—intentional or otherwise—is probably fairly accurate. I really liked Amal. Her desire to find that line—between being Muslim yet Australian, religious yet not too nerdy, liking someone yet not wanting to lead him on—is something that most people, regardless of their particular religion, can relate to. I found Amal’s snappy comebacks to be amusing, and her love for her family and friends endearing.
Recommended for students in grades 8-12.