MVP’s Most Anticipated Books (part two)

Here is a list of some of our most anticipated books by Muslim creatives coming out later this year. Get your bank cards/Apple Pay/PayPal/piggy banks ready, people.

These are books publishing in the second half of the year – for books that published in the first half of the year, check out our part one post!


Nura and the Immortal Palace by M.T. Khan

A magical adventure rooted in Muslim culture and tradition, Nura and the Immortal Palace follows a young girl’s journey from modern-day Pakistan into the world of the jinn.

Nura has worked all her life in the mica mines, earning just enough to keep her family afloat – and enjoy the odd delicious gulab jamun from the market. Some day she’s going to find the Demon’s Tongue, a legendary treasure buried deep in the mines, and her family will never have to worry about money again.

But when a terrible accident buries her best friend below ground, Nura goes in search of him and passes over into the magical and terrible world of the jinn. Across a pink sea and under a purple sky, she finds her way to a palace, where great riches and a whole new life are on offer.

But it’s not long before Nura discovers this world to be as unfair as the real one, and that trickster jinns will always live up to their reputation…

Walker Books, 7th July. Grab a copy here.


Why is Nobody Laughing? by Yasmin Rahman

‘A warm, sensitive and hopeful portrayal of a young person struggling with their mental health and family dynamics … it has depth and great heart as well as charming characters that you will grow to love.’ Ciara Smyth, author of NOT MY PROBLEM

Will the real Ibrahim Malik please stand up?

Ibrahim and Dexter have been best friends forever. While Dexter is always cool and confident, Ibrahim…well, Ibrahim’s dealing with a lot. Hiding his passion for comedy from his family, dealing with the pressure of being the oldest child in an immigrant family, and now he’s started having episodes he soon realises are panic attacks.

When Ibrahim has a panic attack on stage at a local stand-up competition, he runs off to a deserted room. There he finds Sura.

Sura is kind and helps him come to terms with his anxiety. He can open up to her in a way he’s never been able to with Dexter. But there’s also something strange about her – how much she knows about Ibrahim, and how she seems to disappear in an instant.

Will Ibrahim crumble under the pressure, or will Sura’s words be enough to help him? And what will happen when he no longer has her help?

A powerful contemporary novel tackling teenage mental health in boys.
Perfect for fans of John Green, Alice Oseman and Holly Bourne.

Hot Key Books, 7th July. Grab a copy here.


Finding Mr Perfectly Fine by Tasneem Abdur-Rashid

‘If there’s one book you need to read this summer it’s Finding Mr Perfectly Fine Yousra Imran

Last week I turned 29. Along with the usual homemade Victoria sponge, helium balloon and Selfridges gift vouchers, my Mum’s birthday present to me was the threat that if I’m not engaged by my 30th birthday, she’s sending me off to the Motherland to find a fresh-from-the-Desh husband

When Zara’s Mum puts together the most archaic of arranged marriage resources (not exactly the romcom-worthy love story she had envisioned for herself), she is soon exhausted by her family’s failed attempts to set her up with every vaguely suitable Abdul, Ahmed and Farook that they can find. Zara decides to take matters into her own hands. How hard can it be to find a husband at twenty-nine?

With just a year to go, time is of the essence, so Zara joins a dating app and signs up for speed dating.
She meets Hamza, a kind British Egyptian who shares her values and would make a good husband. Zara knows that not all marriages are based on love (or lust) at first sight but struggles with the lack of spark. Particularly when she can’t stop thinking of someone else . . .

As her next birthday looms, and family pressure intensifies, Zara knows she must make a decision, but will she make the right one?

Zaffre, 7th July. Grab a copy here.

The Movement by Ayisha Malik

‘Original, clever, insightful and packs a hell of a feminist punch. I loved it’ Joanne Harris

‘A revelation and a revolution’ Kasim Ali

With words come power. But do you speak out or shut up? 

Everywhere Sara Javed goes – online or outside – everyone is shouting about something. Couldn’t they all just shut up? One day she takes her own advice.

At first people don’t understand her silence and are politely confused at best. But the last thing Sara could anticipate is becoming the figurehead of a global movement that splits society in two.

The Silent Movement sparks outrage in its opposers. Global structures start to shift. And the lives of those closest to Sara – as well as strangers inspired by her act – begin to unravel.

It’s time for the world to reconsider what it means to have a voice. 

A sharply observed novel, charged with compassion and dark wit, that will spark important conversations about how we live, relate and communicate now.

Headline (Hachette), 21st July. Grab a copy here.


Planet Omar: Ultimate Rocket Blast by Zanib Mian

Welcome back to Planet Omar! The fifth book in Zanib Mian’s laugh-out-loud series, with amazing cartoon-style illustrations. Perfect for fans of Tom Gates and Wimpy Kid.

Omar and his friends are taking part in a national rocket building competition. With a little help from Omar’s scientist mum and dad and some fart power too, they come up with a rocket that’s ready to blast off.

But when someone starts sabotaging the rockets, the boys find themselves on a new mission to reveal the culprit…

*Zanib Mian is a World Book Day author for 2021 with her Planet Omar title, Operation Kind.*

Hachette Children’s Group, 21st July. Grab a copy here.


That’s Not My Name by Anoosha Syed

An uplifting picture book about loving your name, finding your voice and standing up for yourself.

Mirha is so excited for her first day of school! She can’t wait to learn, play and make new friends. But when her classmates keep mispronouncing her name, she goes home wondering if she should find a new one.

When Mama helps Mirha see just how special her name is, she returns to school the next day determined to help her classmates say it correctly. 

Featuring beautiful, vibrant illustrations and with an empowering message at its core, this heartwarming picture book from author-illustrator Anoosha Syed reminds us all just how important our names are!

Ladybird, 28th July. Grab a copy here.


This Woven Kingdom by Tahereh Mafi (paperback edition)

Clashing empires, forbidden romance, and a long-forgotten queen destined to save her people―New York Timesbestselling author Tahereh Mafi’s first novel in this epic, romantic fantasy series inspired by Persian mythology.

To all the world, Alizeh is a disposable servant, not the long-lost heir to an ancient Jinn kingdom forced to hide in plain sight.

The crown prince, Kamran, has heard the prophecies foretelling the death of his king. But he could never have imagined that the servant girl with the strange eyes, the girl he can’t put out of his mind, would one day soon uproot his kingdom – and the world.

Perfect for fans of Leigh Bardugo, Tomi Adeyemi, and Sabaa Tahir, this is the explosive first book in a new fantasy trilogy from the New York Times bestselling and National Book Award-nominated author, Tahereh Mafi.

‘An original fantasy saga threaded through with Persian myths written by a queen of the genre. A* grade world-building’ The Times Best YA Books for Summer 2022

‘Forbidden love and Persian mythology are at the center of this new trilogy series, and it might be Mafi’s best work yet.’ Cosmopolitan, Best YA Books of 2022

‘In a tale as exquisitely crafted as one of Alizeh’s own garments, Mafi weaves a spell of destiny and danger, forbidden love and courtly intrigue, magic and revolution.’ Cassandra Clare, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Last Hours

‘This story is so magical and transportive that I fully expected the book would know the moment I’d finished – within hours, no less – and promptly unravel into a pile of jewels and silks in my hands. Mafi’s diamond-bright lyrical voice weaves a tale that is gilded in magic, laced with subterfuge, adorned with the brocade of a tortuous romance, and richly embroidered with Persian mythology. I cannot wait for more.’ Roshani Chokshi, New York Times bestselling author of The Gilded Wolves

Farshore, 4th August. Grab a copy here.


The Last White Man by Mohsin Hamid

From the internationally bestselling author of Exit West, a story of love, loss, and rediscovery in a time of unsettling change

One morning, Anders wakes to find that his skin has turned dark, his reflection a stranger to him. At first he tells only Oona, an old friend, newly a lover. Soon, reports of similar occurrences surface across the land. 

Some see in the transformations the long-dreaded overturning of an established order, to be resisted to a bitter end. In many, like Anders’s father and Oona’s mother, a sense of profound loss wars with profound love. 

As the bond between Anders and Oona deepens, change takes on a different shading: a chance to see one another, face to face, anew.

‘Gorgeously crafted . . . The Last White Man concludes on a note of hope, a door jarred open just enough to let transcendence pour through’ O, the Oprah Magazine 

‘The electric premise, borrowed from Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, looks set to update a classic to make it urgently relevant’ Evening Standard

‘A hypnotic race fable . . . In the hands of such a deft and humane writer as Hamid, a bizarre construct is moved far beyond any mere ‘what if” Guardian

Penguin, 11th August. Grab a copy here.


Meet Me in Mumbai by Sabina Khan

A novel in two acts – told eighteen years apart – gives voice to both mother (Ayesha) and daughter (Mira) after an unplanned teen pregnancy led Ayesha to place Mira up for adoption.

Coming to the US to study, Ayesha is swept up in a whirlwind romance with Suresh – an Indian boy who reminds her of home. Mere months away from starting university, she falls pregnant and finds herself alone. She makes the difficult decision to hide her pregnancy and put her daughter up for adoption, before returning to India.

Years later, seventeen-year-old Mira Fuller-Jensen has had a comfortable childhood but has never felt quite like she fit in their majority white community. All she knows is that her mums adopted her when she was born and that her biological mother was a student who went back to India. When she comes across letters addressed to her from her birth mother, she sees a way to finally capture that feeling of belonging.

Her mother writes that if Mira can forgive her for having to give her up, she should find a way to travel to India for her eighteenth birthday and meet her. Mira knows she’ll always regret it if she doesn’t go. But is she actually ready for what she will learn?

Scholastic, 1st September. Grab a copy here.


As Long As The Lemon Trees Grow by Zoulfa Katouh

Burning with the fires of hope and possibility, AS LONG AS THE LEMON TREES GROW will sweep you up and never let you go.

Salama Kassab was a pharmacy student when the cries for freedom broke out in Syria. She still had her parents and her big brother; she still had her home. She was even supposed to be meeting a boy to talk about marriage. 

Now Salama volunteers at a hospital in Homs, helping the wounded who flood through the doors. She knows that she should be thinking about leaving, but who will help the people of her beloved country if she doesn’t? With her heart so conflicted, her mind has conjured a vision to spur her to action. His name is Khawf, and he haunts her nights with hallucinations of everything she has lost.

But even with Khawf pressing her to leave, when she crosses paths with Kenan, the boy she was supposed to meet on that fateful day, she starts to doubt her resolve in leaving home at all. Soon, Salama must learn to see the events around her for what they truly are-not a war, but a revolution-and decide how she, too, will cry for Syria’s freedom.

Bloomsbury, 15th September. Grab a copy here.


The River of Silver by S.A. Chakraborty

Bestselling author Shannon Chakraborty expands the acclaimed, Hugo-nominated Daevabad Trilogy with this magical compilation of stories from before, during, and after the events of the series.

Told from the perspective of characters beloved and hated, and even those never heard from until now, these tales of Daevabad enrich a world already teeming with magic and wonder.

Explore a kingdom hidden from human eyes. A place where djinn live and thrive, fight and love. A realm where princes question their rule, and powerful demons can help you…or destroy you.

From Manizheh’s first steps towards rebellion to adventures that take place after The Empire of Gold, this is a must-have collection for those who can’t get enough of Nahri, Ali, and Dara and all that unfolded around them.

HarperCollins, 13th October. Grab a copy here.


Blackwater Falls by Ausma Zehanat Khan

From critically acclaimed author Ausma Zehanat Khan, Blackwater Falls is the first in a timely and powerful crime series, introducing Detective Inaya Rahman.

‘A gripping and compulsive mystery, but much more than that: an exploration of faith, prejudice and fear of the unknown.’ Ann Cleeves, New York Times bestselling author of the Vera, Shetland and Two Rivers series

Girls from immigrant communities have been disappearing for months in the Colorado town of Blackwater Falls, but the local sheriff is slow to act and the fates of the missing girls largely ignored. At last, the calls for justice become too loud to ignore when the body of a star student and refugee–the Syrian teenager Razan Elkader–is positioned deliberately in a mosque.

Detective Inaya Rahman and Lieutenant Waqas Seif of the Denver Police are recruited to solve Razan’s murder, and quickly uncover a link to other missing and murdered girls. But as Inaya gets closer to the truth, Seif finds ways to obstruct the investigation. Inaya may be drawn to him, but she is wary of his motives: he may be covering up the crimes of their boss, whose connections in Blackwater run deep.

Inaya turns to her female colleagues, attorney Areesha Adams and Detective Catalina Hernandez, for help in finding the truth. The three have bonded through their experiences as members of vulnerable groups and now they must work together to expose the conspiracy behind the murders before another girl disappears.

Delving deep into racial tensions, and police corruption and violence, Blackwater Falls examines a series of crimes within the context of contemporary American politics with compassion and searing insight.

Macmillan, 1st November. Grab a copy here.


Dear Black Child by Rahma Rodaah

In the spirit of I Am Enough, this is a moving and lyrical tribute to and affirmation of Black children around the world—by an exciting new author and illustrator team.

Dear Black Child, 

We are here to remind you of your glory…

An inspiring love letter to Black children from all cultures, this book is a celebration of their beauty, joy, and resilience.

Dear Black Child is a story of self-acceptance, love, and empowerment for Black immigrant children and families of the diaspora around the world and features joyful and vibrant illustrations.

HarperCollins, 10th November. Grab a copy here.


The Sevenfold Hunters by Rose Egal

Sci-fi fans will love this genre-bending debut full of cutthroat school politics and the speculative intrigue of alien contact.

There’s nothing hijabi alien hunter Abyan wants more than to graduate from Carlisle Academy and finally rid the Earth of aliens, the Nosaru. 

Everything is going to plan until the Nosaru kill one of Abyan’s squad mates. To make matters worse, the school admins replace her elite squad member with a sub-par new recruit, Artemis. Despite Artemis failing every test—and bringing the team down with her—their cutthroat instructors refuse to kick her out.

Together Abyan, Artemis and the rest of the team unravel the mystery of why Artemis is actually there, what the Nosaru really want, and what Carlisle Academy has been hiding from them all.

Page Street Publishing, 6th December. Grab a copy here.


Love from Mecca to Medina by S.K. Ali

‘On the trip of a lifetime, Adam and Zayneb must find their way back to each other in this surprising and romantic sequel to the “bighearted, wildly charming”’ (Becky Albertalli, New York Times bestselling author) Love from A to Z.

Adam and Zayneb. Perfectly matched. Painfully apart. 

Adam is in Doha, Qatar, making a map of the Hijra, a historic migration from Mecca to Medina, and worried about where his next paycheck will come from. Zayneb is in Chicago, where school and extracurricular stresses are piling on top of a terrible frenemy situation, making her miserable. 

Then a marvel occurs: Adam and Zayneb get the chance to spend Thanksgiving week on the Umrah, a pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, in Saudi Arabia. Adam is thrilled; it’s the reboot he needs and an opportunity to pray for a hijra in real life: to migrate to Zayneb in Chicago. Zayneb balks at the trip at first, having envisioned another kind of vacation, but then decides a spiritual reset is calling her name too. And they can’t wait to see each other—surely, this is just what they both need.

But the trip is nothing like what they expect, from the appearance of Adam’s former love interest in their traveling group to the anxiety gripping Zayneb when she’s supposed to be “spiritual.” As one wedge after another drives them apart while they make their way through rites in the holy city, Adam and Zayneb start to wonder: was their meeting just an oddity after all? Or can their love transcend everything else like the greatest marvels of the world?

Simon & Schuster, 8th December. Grab a copy here.


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