Unashamed by Leah Vernon

Unashamed by Leah Vernon

Ever since she was little, Leah Vernon was told what to believe and how to act. There wasn’t any room for imperfection. Good Muslim girls listened more than they spoke. They didn’t have a missing father or a mother with mental illness. They didn’t have fat bodies or grow up wishing they could be like the white characters they saw on TV. They didn’t have husbands who abused and cheated on them. They certainly didn’t have secret abortions. In Unashamed, Vernon takes to task the myth of the perfect Muslim woman with frank dispatches on her love-hate relationship with her hijab and her faith, race, weight, mental illness, domestic violence, sexuality, the millennial world of dating, and the process of finding her voice… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Islamomisia
  • Racism
  • Fatmisia
  • Rape
  • Domestic violence

Listen, Layla by Randa Abdel-Fattah

Listen, Layla by Randa Abdel-Fattah

Layla has ended the school year on a high and can’t wait to spend the holidays hanging out with her friends and designing a prize-winning Grand Designs Tourismo invention. But Layla’s plans are interrupted when her grandmother in Sudan falls ill and the family rush to be with her.

The last time Layla went to Sudan she was only a young child. Now she feels torn between her Sudanese and Australian identities. As political tensions in Sudan erupt, so too do tensions between Layla and her family. Layla is determined not to lose her place in the invention team, but will she go against her parents’ wishes? What would a Kandaka do?

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Islamomisia
  • Racism
  • Sexism discussed
  • Grandmother hospitalised due to a stroke
  • Cousin hospitalised for gunshot wounds to the shoulder & leg
  • Death of a friend mentioned
  • Bullying
  • Gun violence
  • Riots, on-page

You Must Be Layla by Randa Abdel-Fattah

You Must Be Layla by Randa Abdel-Fattah

Layla’s mind goes a million miles a minute, so does her mouth – unfortunately, her better judgement can take a while to catch up! Although she believes she was justified for doing what she did, a suspension certainly isn’t the way she would have wished to begin her time at her fancy new high school. Despite the setback, Layla’s determined to show everyone that she does deserve her scholarship and sets her sights on winning a big invention competition. But where to begin?

Looking outside and in, Layla will need to come to terms with who she is and who she wants to be if she has any chance of succeeding.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Islamophobia
  • Racism
  • Coming out themes
  • Emesis
  • Physical assault
  • Bullying

Arab, Australian, Other edited by Randa Abdel-Fattah and Sara Saleh

Arab, Australian, Other: Stories on Race and Identity edited by Randa Abdel-Fattah & Sara M. Saleh

Although there are 22 separate Arab nationalities representing an enormous variety of cultural backgrounds and experiences, the portrayal of Arabs in Australia tends to range from homogenising (at best) to racist pop-culture caricatures.

This collection explores the experience of living as a member of the Arab diaspora in Australia with contributions from Paula Abood, Nokomi Achkar, Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Rooan Al Kalmashi, Ryan Al-Natour, Rawah Arja, Hana Assafiri, Sarah Ayoub, Omar Bensaidi, Sara El Sayed, Asma Fahmi, Farid Farid, Ruby Hamad, Abdulrahaman Hammoud, Lamisse Hamouda, Amani Haydar, Miran Hosny, Lora Inak, Elias Jahshan, Nicola Joseph, Huna Amweero, Zainab Kadhim, Mohammad Awad, Wafa Kazal and Yassir Morsi

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism
  • Islamophobia
  • Gang rape discussed
  • Child abuse
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a father & mother
  • Murder
  • Gang violence
  • War themes
  • Deportation & displacement
  • Bullying

Through the Skylight by Ian Baucom

Through the Skylight by Ian Baucom and illustrated by Justin Gerard

When Jared, Shireen, and Miranda are each given one glittering gift from an old Venetian shopkeeper, they never fathom the powers they are now able to unleash; they never expect that their very reality is about to be utterly upended. And the adventure has hardly begun.

For in another time, centuries earlier, another trio—Rashid, Maria, and Francesca—have been thrown together under terrible circumstances: They have been kidnapped and, along with hundreds of other children, will be sold into child slavery. Unless, that is, they can find some way to save them all.

But all their fates lie in the hands of Jared, Shireen, and Miranda. The future—and the lives—of these three very modern children become entirely intertwined with those of the children from the past. Danger, it seems, has a way of spanning centuries.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Antisemitism
  • Islamomisia
  • Smoking mentioned
  • Imprisonment
  • Animal injury
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Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

Wishtree by Katherine Applegate and illustrated by Charles Santoso

Trees can’t tell jokes, but they can certainly tell stories. . . .

Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood “wishtree”—people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches. Along with her crow friend Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red’s hollows, this “wishtree” watches over the neighborhood.

You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red’s experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever. 

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Islamomisia
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Yassmin’s Story by Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Yassmin’s Story by Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Frank, fearless, funny, articulate, and inspiring, Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a young Muslim dynamo offering a bracing breath of fresh air—and hope. At 21, Yassmin found herself working on a remote Australian oil and gas rig; she was the only woman and certainly the only Sudanese-Egyptian-Australian background Muslim woman. With her hijab quickly christened a “tea cosy,” there could not be a more unlikely place on earth for a young Muslim woman to want to be. This is the story of how she got there, where she is going, and how she wants the world to change.

Born in the Sudan, Yassmin and her parents moved to Brisbane when she was two, and she has been tackling barriers ever since… Read more.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Misogyny
  • Islamomisia
  • Death of a grandparent
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The F Team by Rawah Arja

The F Team by Rawah Arja

Meet Tariq Nader, leader of ‘The Wolf Pack’ at Punchbowl High, who has been commanded by the new principal to join a football competition with his mates in order to rehabilitate the public image of their school. When the team is formed, Tariq learns there’s a major catch – half of the team is made up of white boys from Cronulla, aka enemy territory – and he must compete with their strongest player for captaincy of the team.

At school Tariq thinks he has life all figured out until he falls for a new girl called Jamila, who challenges everything he thought he knew. At home, his outspoken ways have brought him into conflict with his family. Now, with complications on all fronts, he has to dig deep to control his anger, and find what it takes to be a leader.

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism & racial slurs
  • Islamomisia
  • Drug addiction mentioned
  • Cancer mentioned
  • Death of a parent recounted
  • Incarceration of a parent mentioned
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Beta Test by Annabeth Albert

Beta Test by Annabeth Albert

Brilliant graphic designer Ravi Tandel is ahead of the game—he’s just been asked to present a top secret project at a huge conference in Seattle. All systems are go…until he learns his buttoned-up office nemesis is coming along for the ride.

Tristan Jones isn’t really the gamer type, but he knows the back end of the video game business inside out. Together, he and Ravi will give an awesome presentation. If they survive the cross-country trip first.

Tossed together in close quarters, Ravi’s shocked to see Tristan’s sexy, softer side emerge from such a conservative shell. To be together, Tristan will have to push past his fear and ultimately decide: Does he want a future with Ravi? Or is it game over before they’ve even begun?

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Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism
  • Islamomisia
  • Homomisia
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Death of a brother in a car accident mentioned
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Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin

Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin

Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine, the only halal restaurant in the close-knit Golden Crescent neighbourhood. Hana waitresses there part time, but what she really wants is to tell stories on the radio. If she can just outshine her fellow intern at the city radio station, she may have a chance at landing a job. In the meantime, Hana pours her thoughts and dreams into a podcast, where she forms a lively relationship with one of her listeners. But soon she’ll need all the support she can get: a new competing restaurant, a more upscale halal place, is about to open in the Golden Crescent, threatening Three Sisters… Read more.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Misogyny
  • Racism
  • Islamophobia
  • Gentrification
  • Hate crimes
  • Pregnancy
  • Chronic illness
  • Bullying
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