In the Name of God, the Kind, the Beautiful
A few months ago, my friend Hesham Hassaballa sent me a review copy of his new book, Noble Brother, which tells the story of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad entirely in verse, and I’d meant to post my thoughts much sooner, but given the chatter this week about the OC hate rally video, wherein protesters shouted hateful invective at Muslims about their most revered figure, the timing seems oddly apropos. Hesham (whose writing I previously linked to in last summer’s legendary “Park51″ post) takes a subject that’s intimately familiar to most Muslims and virtually unknown to most non-Muslims, and with his unique, creative approach makes it palatable to both, revealing fresh insights that will enlighten both constituencies.
In both the depth of its message and the breadth of its content (including an appendix that provides some very welcome background and historical context on the events discussed), Noble Brother confidently wrests the conversation about Prophet Muhammad and his integral role in everyday Muslims’ lives back from the minority of folks who violently freak out over political cartoons or South Park episodes. Instead, it highlights the traits of humanity, humility, and compassion that serve as exemplars for a billion-plus people all over the world. Whether Muslim or non-Muslim, this is a book that’s very worthy of a read. If interested, you can purchase a copy here (and be sure to check out Hesham’s always-insightful blog here).