Arab-American Heritage Month - Audiobook Recommendations for National Walking Day (April 3rd)

To recognize National Walking Day and Arab-American Heritage Month, here are some amazing recs from Libro.fm's MENA Authors playlist.



As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow by Zoulfa Katouh and Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga are two of my favorites.

As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow is a stunning debut set in Syria. It follows a young woman named Salama who is a pharmacy student turned emergency room doctor due to civil war. The novel explores family, grief, PTSD, love, migration, and war in a beautifully heartbreaking way. I highly recommend. You can read my review of As Long As the Lemon Trees Grow on my blog.

 

As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow Audiobook on Libro.fm

As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow Audiobook on Libro.fm

A love letter to Syria and its people, As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow is a speculative novel set amid the Syrian Revolution, burning with the fires of hope, love, and possibility. Perfect for fans of The Book Thief and Salt to the Sea.Salama Kassab was a pharmacy student when the cries for freedom broke out in Syria. She still had her parents...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

Similarly, Other Words for Home is also about civil war in Syria. But this is a middle grade novel-in-verse told from the voice of Jude who comes to America with only her expecting mother when the war breaks out. Separated from her father and brother, Jude is also struggling with adjusting to American life and feeling out of place. Told in beautiful poetry, you can't help but fall in love. See my thoughts on this book right after I read it in my Q1 Reading Wrap Up post from 2023.

 

Other Words for Home Audiobook on Libro.fm

Other Words for Home Audiobook on Libro.fm

New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book!A gorgeously written, hopeful middle grade novel in verse about a young girl who must leave Syria to move to the United States, perfect for fans of Jason Reynolds and Aisha Saeed.Jude never thought she’d be leaving her beloved older brother and father behind, all the way across the ocean in Syria....

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I'm currently reading Hijab Butch Blues by Lamya H. and it's AS good as all the folks have been saying. It's a poignant memoir about a Muslim woman's struggle with being queer. The writing is simple but powerful. I'm loving how it starts off as little vignettes of significant moments in her youth that are meaningful to her self-discovery. 

 

Hijab Butch Blues Audiobook on Libro.fm

Hijab Butch Blues Audiobook on Libro.fm

A queer hijabi Muslim immigrant survives her coming-of-age by drawing strength and hope from stories in the Quran in this “raw and relatable memoir that challenges societal norms and expectations” (Linah Mohammad, NPR).“A masterful, must-read contribution to conversations on power, justice, healing, and devotion from a singular voice I now trust...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

The other recs are on my TBR:

In Martyr! by Kaveh Akbar, we have a newly sober, orphaned son of Iranian immigrants, guided by the voices of artists, poets, and kings, who embarks on a remarkable search for a family secret that leads him to a terminally ill painter living out her final days in the Brooklyn Museum. Electrifying, funny, and wholly original, Martyr! heralds the arrival of an essential new voice in contemporary fiction. This book sounds like a wild ride!

 

Martyr! Audiobook on Libro.fm

Martyr! Audiobook on Libro.fm

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK • A newly sober, orphaned son of Iranian immigrants, guided by the voices of artists, poets, and kings, embarks on a remarkable search for a family secret that leads him to a terminally ill painter living out her final days in the Brooklyn Museum. Electrifying, funny, and wholly original,...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

Dearborn by Ghassan Zeineddine is a collection of short stories that examines the diversity and uniqueness of the Arab-American community in Dearborn, Michigan. In ten tragicomic stories, Zeineddine explores themes of identity, generational conflicts, war trauma, migration, sexuality, queerness, home and belonging, and more. I'm a big fan of short story collections, especially when they're interconnected, so I'm definitely looking forward to this one.

 

Dearborn Audiobook on Libro.fm

Dearborn Audiobook on Libro.fm

Spanning several decades, Ghassan Zeineddine’s debut collection examines the diverse range and complexities of the Arab-American community in Dearborn, Michigan. In ten tragicomic stories, Zeineddine explores themes of identity, generational conflicts, war trauma, migration, sexuality, queerness, home and belonging, and more. In Dearborn, a...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

The Tale of Princess Fatima, Warrior Woman: The Arabic Epic of Dhat al-Himma
by Melanie Magidow is the only Arabic epic named for a woman, The Tale of Princess Fatima and it's being published for the first time in English! I am a big fan of myths and legends, so I'm definitely excited for this one. It recounts the thrilling adventures of a legendary medieval warrior universally known throughout the Middle East and long overdue to join world literature's pantheon of female heroes.

 

The Tale of Princess Fatima, Warrior Woman Audiobook on Libro.fm

The Tale of Princess Fatima, Warrior Woman Audiobook on Libro.fm

Published in English for the first time, and the only Arabic epic named for a woman, The Tale of Princess Fatima recounts the thrilling adventures of a legendary medieval warrior universally known throughout the Middle East and long overdue to join world literature's pantheon of female heroes.A Penguin ClassicA fearsome, sword-slinging heroine...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

Behind You is the Sea by Susan Muaddi Darraj is an exciting debut novel that gives voice to the diverse residents of a Palestinian American community in Baltimore—from young activists in conflict with their traditional parents to the poor who clean for the rich—lives which intersect across divides of class, generation, and religion. As Gaza continues to be bombarded by Israeli forces, we need more stories about themselves in their own words. 

 

Behind You Is the Sea Audiobook on Libro.fm

Behind You Is the Sea Audiobook on Libro.fm

“Behind You Is the Sea fearlessly confronts stereotypes about Palestinian culture, weaving a remarkable portrait of life's intricate moments, from joyous weddings to heart-wrenching funerals, from shattered hearts to hidden truths—I wept and grew alongside this family. This is a story that challenges perceptions, offering a heartfelt glimpse...

Buy on Libro.fm

 

 

Which have these titles are you going to add to your TBR for Arab-American Heritage Month?

 

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