Homosexuality in Islam: Islamic Reflection on Gay, Lesbian, and Transgender Muslims (Review)
reviews / August 6, 2012

Title: Homosexuality in Islam: Islamic Reflection on Gay, Lesbian, and Transgender Muslims Author: Scott Siraj al-Haqq Kugle Publication Year: 2010 Pages: 448 Genre: Non-Fiction Source: E-review copy from the publisher From the cover: The first book length treatment to offer a detailed analysis of how Islamic scripture, jurisprudence, and Hadith can accommodate a sexually sensitive Islam. Numerous scholars and commentators maintain that the Qur’an and Hadith rule unambiguously against same-sex relations. This pioneering study argues that there is far more nuance to the matter than most believe. # Rating: This book is a part of the Ramadan Reading event happening here this month. You can find other posts in the series by clicking on the image to the right, or by taking a look at the schedule of posts and reviews.

Stories I Only Tell My Friends: An Autobiography (Review)
reviews / May 14, 2012

Title: Stories I Only Tell My Friends Author/Narrator: Rob Lowe Publication Year: 2011 Pages: 320 (audio length: 9 hours 11 minutes) Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoirs Source: Audiobook version purchased from Audible.com From the cover: A wryly funny and surprisingly moving account of an extraordinary life lived almost entirely in the public eye. A teen idol at 15, an international icon and founder of the Brat Pack at 20, and one of Hollywood’s top stars to this day, Rob Lowe chronicles his experiences as a painfully misunderstood child actor in Ohio who was uprooted to the wild counterculture of mid-70s Malibu, where he embarked on his unrelenting pursuit of a career in Hollywood. The Outsiders placed Lowe at the birth of the modern youth movement in the entertainment industry. During his time on The West Wing, he witnessed the surreal nexus of show business and politics, both on the set and in the actual White House. And in between are deft and humorous stories of the wild excesses that marked the 80s, leading to his quest for family and sobriety. Never mean-spirited or salacious, Lowe delivers unexpected glimpses into his successes, disappointments, relationships, and one-of-a-kind encounters with people who shaped our world…

Mother of the Believers: A Novel of the Birth of Islam (Review)
reviews / March 12, 2012

Title: Mother of the Believers: A Novel of the Birth of Islam Author: Kamran Pasha Publication Year: 2009 Pages: 560 Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction Source: Review copy from the publisher From the cover: Deep in the heart of seventh-century Arabia, a new prophet named Muhammad has arisen. As his message of enlightenment sweeps through Arabia and unifies the warring tribes, his young wife Aisha recounts Muhammad’s astonishing transformation from prophet to warrior to statesman. But just after the moment of her husband’s greatest triumph — the conquest of the holy city of Mecca — Muhammad falls ill and dies in Aisha’s arms. A young widow, Aisha finds herself at the center of the new Muslim empire and becomes by turns a teacher, political leader, and warrior. Written in beautiful prose and meticulously researched, Mother of the Believer is the story of an extraordinary woman who was destined to help usher Islam into the world. Despite the fact that Muhammad is such an important historical person, there’s an awful lot of reluctance to write about him in less serious ways in order to make his life story more accessible to the masses. One of the most important reasons why I picked…

Columbine (Review)
reviews / February 27, 2012

Title: Columbine Author: Dave Cullen Narrator: Don Leslie Publication Year: 2009 Pages: 464 (audio length: 14 hours 9 minutes) Genre: Non-Fiction Source: Audiobook version purchased from Audible.com From the cover: On April 20, 1999, two boys left an indelible stamp on the American psyche. Their goal was simple: to blow up their school, Oklahoma-City style, and to leave “a lasting impression on the world.” Their bombs failed, but the ensuing shooting defined a new era of school violence-irrevocably branding every subsequent shooting “another Columbine.” When we think of Columbine, we think of the Trench Coat Mafia; we think of Cassie Bernall, the girl we thought professed her faith before she was shot; and we think of the boy pulling himself out of a school window — the whole world was watching him. Now, in a riveting piece of journalism nearly ten years in the making, comes the story none of us knew. In this revelatory book, Dave Cullen has delivered a profile of teenage killers that goes to the heart of psychopathology. He lays bare the callous brutality of mastermind Eric Harris, and the quavering, suicidal Dylan Klebold, who went to prom three days earlier and obsessed about love in his…