Hello, friends! Our book today is Under My Hijab, written by Hena Khan and illustrated by Aaliya Jaleel, an awesome look at hijab and the women who wear it.
A young girl considers the women in her life who wear hijab – her grandmother, for instance, carefully folds her hijab to keep it out of the way while she works at a baker; at home, she wears her graying hair in a neat bun while they bake together. The girl loves the way her mother’s cheerful pink hijab contrasts her white doctor coat; at home, her long hair is braided while tending her garden. For each hijabi, the girl notes the various ways they style it to reflect their personalities – towering high with a homemade pin for her artist aunt, practical under a sun hat for her camp counselor, trendy and fashionable for her teen sister. She thinks on how she loves and admires each woman, and when she is old enough, she’ll choose to wear hijab as well – inspired by them, and as a reflection of the unique person she is under her hijab.
Awesome! A wonderful tale of hijabi pride for both Muslim and non-Muslim readers. The rhyming texts explores how the women underneath hijab are complex individual with different personalities, passions, and styles. For young Muslim readers, it’s a beautiful bit of representation and girl power; for non-Muslims, it can help to dispel many of the misconceptions about hijab (an afterward by the author further explores the details of hijab, along with when and why women choose to wear it). Jaleel’s illustrations are perfect, depicting women of all skintones and body types as warm, comforting presences, while capturing each woman’s personality and flair. The length is great, JJ loved it, and we absolutely recommend it. Baby Bookworm approved!