Growing Up Muslim: Understanding Islamic Beliefs and Practices, by Sambul Karamali Sambul Karamali discusses Islam and Muslim identity in contemporary Western society. This book provides historic context for some Islamic prohibitions, as well as differentiates between religious context and other cultural influences.
Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah Amal is an Australian-born, Muslim Palestinian with some serious identity issues. At 16, she loves shopping, watches Sex and the City, and IMs her friends about her crush on a classmate. She also wants to wear the hijab, to be strong enough to show a badge of her deeply held faith, even if she confronts insults from some at her snotty prep school. "Hilarious [...] and sometimes heartbreaking" (Booklist).
Out of Nowhere, by Maria Padian Tom Bouchard is captain of his high-school soccer team when a phenomenally talented soccer player, who is also a Somali immigrant, joins the team. The newcomer, Saeed, is part of a new community of Somali immigrants who have arrived in Tom’s small Maine hometown. As Tom and Saeed become friends, they must struggle with cultural and family differences. "Sensitive, sympathetic, and insightful. [...] A timely and thought-provoking examination of a continuing dynamic in American communities" (Booklist).
Bamboo People, by Mitali Perkins 15-year-old Chiko is pressed into military service by the Burmese government, where he must fight an ongoing war with the Karenni people. When Chiko gets wounded he finds himself at the mercy of an angry Karenni boy named Tu Reh.
Kabul Girl's Soccer Club: A Dream, Eight Girls, and a Journey Home, by Ayub Awista Ayub Awista chronicles her efforts to bring eight Afghani girls to the U.S. in 2004 to participate in the Afghan-American Soccer Cup and International Children’s Games.
Now is the Time for Running, by Michael Williams Deo, 14, is playing soccer with his friends in his Zimbabwe village when soldiers arrive, destroy everything, and kill his mother. Running for his life while caring for his older, mentally disabled brother, Deo must find a way to survive as they both flee across the border to South Africa. This novel is based on the author's interviews with Zimbabwean refugee boys on the Cape Town streets.
I am a Taxi, by Deborah Ellis Twelve-year-old Diego lives in prison with his parents in the city of Cochabamba, Bolivia. There, he attends school and works as a "taxi," running errands for the inmates in the great street market. Then his friend, Mando, persuades him to make money stomping coca leaves in cocaine pits in the jungle, with local gangsters and a smooth boss who supplies "hungry noses" in America. "A bold story of contemporary kids in crisis and brutally exploited" (Booklist).
Mud City, by Deborah Ellis Parvana's best friend, Shauzia, has escaped the misery of her life in Kabul, only to end up in a refugee camp in Pakistan. Shauzia finally decides to leave the camp disguised as a boy and try her luck on the streets. This is a powerfully moving story of survival.
Where I Belong, by Gillian Cross After her parents smuggle Khadija (13) out of Somalia she is adopted by a kind refugee family in London. Once in England, she learns that her younger brother, Mahmoud, is being held by kidnappers back home. To earn the exorbitant ransom money to set Mahmoud free, she agrees to work the runway as a model during Fashion Week.
A Long Walk to Water, by Linda Sue Park 11-year-old Salva’s school in Sudan is attacked by brutal rebel soldiers. He escapes, and makes it to refugee camps in Ethiopia and then Kenya, where he is one of 3,000 young men chosen to go to America. After he is adopted by a family in Rochester, New York, he is reunited with the Sudanese family that he left behind. "Newbery Award–winning Park’s spare, immediate account, based on a true story, adds a stirring contemporary dimension." (Booklist).
And, one bonus...
This is Our Land: A History of American Immigration, by Linda Barrett Osborne Perspectives of individual immigrants in personal narratives and photographs. "A strong introduction to American immigration" (Booklist).