With her Muslim hijab and down-turned gaze, Najwa is invisible to most eyes, especially to the rich families whose houses she cleans in London. Twe ...more
the cover of the book appealed to me so I took it home. It was about two years ago and that was when my reading career began. was not much of a reader before.
Now all I can remember is that I cried through it and didn't quite understand the ending. But this book always lingered on in my mind.
After two years things changed, a lot of things happened, at that point I remembered what I read in this book, ...more
In modern society there seems to be this over-arching generalization that Islam is this incredibly oppressive religion for women. This is coupled with the large lack of female voices in arguing a counter-case of this generalization that has allowed this view to go fairly undiscussed. As Mahmudul Hasan writes, “Muslim women have often been portrayed as disempowered, oppressed and belittled by Muslim men, subservient to their husbands with no equa...more
It didn't my emotions going and I felt I was reading it just for the sake of it. Sorry I c ...more
But after a coup which results in her father’s execution, Najwa, her brother Omar and her mother are forced to seek asylum in Lon ...more
Najwa’s journey to spiritual fulfillment was the most satisfying part of this novel. Her voice was intimate and easy to identify with. I was pleasantly surprised to find that she chose to take what is considered a more conservative and prudish path in life. I think the a ...more
Aboulela has written about what makes a rather superficial young woman become a devout older one, and how her religious beliefs shape her conduc ...more
I'll say something straight about Najwa, A.K.A. the main character in this book. I have to admit she is a tough teenager. The misery she felt, from the death of her father, followed by her mother, and his brother in jail, didn't make a single doubt in her heart to go back to the path she believed, was right.
After having experienced the western liberal life, she had the intentions of purifying herself and start over. Now that's a rare choice.
The dialogues between Najwa and Anwar, Najwa and Omar ...more
Najwa seeks spirituality and finds it in religion. Minaret plays on distinct lack of presence of an idea to make the idea seem bolder and provocative. In Sudan, she is fairly westernized and when she lands in ...more
Besides the easy diction, the book's pace - not fast, not slow -, I think, made it a page-turner. Easy and flowery and precise still.
Najwa (protagonist) might not be intelligent (She definitely could've made some less self-harmin ...more
This book is written beautifully and I cannot say there is anything I don't like about it. I can easily relate to her about faith being important part in life.It looks into the mind of a faithful muslim women, who is true to herself. 5* ...more
I had had Minaret on my Kindle for quite a while, but never really had the right opportunity to read it. So when I heard of Ramadan Readathon, I just knew that I had to include this book in my TBR. It follows the story of a upper-class Sudanese woman, who ends up living in poverty in London.
It’s #ownvoices for Muslim and Sudanese representation.
Najwa is an interesting character, and the people who meet her in the book don’t r ...more
I bought six books at the excellent Hope Association book fair back in May last year and Minaret is one of two that I hadn't got around to reading until now. I was attracted to the story by the Ali Smith quote on the front cover: "Minaret is a wonderful book ... readable, subtle and ambiguous, with a shocking clarity of voice" and by Aboulela being an #OwnVoices Muslim Sudanese author in London. It's depressingly uncommon to actually hear abo ...more
Khartoum, Sudan — the names alone are evocative and sent me off to refresh my (very limited) knowledge of this part of the world.
Political unrest, a family in exile in London.. this book follows the experiences of a young woman, over time, who is happy with and confused by the freedoms of her life in London, and homesick for her old life. A slow but detailed novel ...more
The story is about Najwa and how she is forced to live a life different from what she imagined, from being the daughter of rich parents to being a maid in a new country, from being loved by her parents and twin brother, to being orphaned, alone, empty spaces.
The story is also about Najwa finding her way to Islam and falling in love with her employer’s son, ...more
I preferred the beginning of this novel. The storyline towards the middle got a bit annoying. Najwa (the protagonist) falling in love with Tamer, her employer’s son was a bit strange to me. Why is this almost 40 year old in love with a 19 year old university student? I found Tamer way too judgmental as he thought he was a better muslim than others. Najwa was a little too naiive for my liking. Her fate was very sad, as she was orphaned quite ea ...more
Through Najwa, I have experienced life in Sudan in a way I haven't before- even though I myself am Sudanese and have lived in Sudan for 6 years.
What I love about the book is how it deals with the idea of escapism; passing through life without actually living it. Each one of us uses some mean of escaping during situations we feel we cannot handle. And in one form or another, all of the charac ...more