Tuesday, September 18, 2007

In the Name of God by Paula Jolin


I recommend this book for: high school


Nadia is a 17 year old Syrian Muslim who considers herself to be religious. She wears the hijab and is annoyed by her less devout cousins. When an older boy cousin gets involved with radicals and starts spouting their anti-American philosophy everywhere, Nadia starts to get drawn in to the more militant form of Islam - the excerpt on the back cover features a man teaching her how to strap a bomb around her waist and set it off.


This book is a little scary, because Nadia is under a lot of the same kind of pressures most teens are - family and financial issues, dealing with romantic feelings, struggling with religion. How many bad decisions do most people make during the course of their teen years? Nadia, however, is in the position to make a very bad decision with a high death toll. Interesting reading to get an Eastern perspective on the Western world. Some of the characters lack dimension, and the ending happens a little too quickly with little resolution, but the insight into Nadia's life more than makes up for those flaws.

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