Just Loved Reading:

Amina’s Voice

Middle Grade/Fiction

Khan, Hena. Amina’s Voice. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2017.

            Amina Khokar is a Pakistani-American immigrant who, with her brother and parents lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her best friend, Soojin, is an immigrant from South Korea and is about to become an American citizen. When Soojin becomes friendly with their once-sworn enemy, Emily, and announces that she is changing her Korean name to something American, Amina feels her life is about to be upended. To make things even more stressful, her parents have signed Amina and her brother to the state-wide Quran competition. Amina freezes in front of audiences, refusing to use her beautiful singing much less her imperfect Arabic.

On top of everything that is happening, her strict great-uncle is coming for a long visit and is all too willing to help her perfect her Arabic for the competition. Only when the Islamic Center is vandalized, does Amina realize she is not alone, but has the support of loving friends and family.


The author weaves the cultural and religious traditions of Amina and her family within the larger American society that the live in. Amina is no different than any other middle school student in her town but all of a sudden, she has to face hatred and destruction of the Islamic center. Her quiet world is no longer. It’s only when her friends support her does she realize where she really belongs.

Amina and her family and friends lived in Minneapolis,Minnesota. To learn more about Minneapolis, click on the following links:



Amina and her family are part of Minneapolis’ large diverse Muslim community:


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About marion

I first wrote and sketched as a child growing up in Pittsburgh, PA and Brooklyn, New York. I received her first recognition for my creativity when I won the New York City Schools Art Award and participated in my first art exhibit in downtown Manhattan. I was fourteen and a half when I moved to Cyprus with my family. I experienced culture shock but I continued to write about and sketch the sights and sounds of another country and many other things. I am a creative person. I write children's and Young Adult fiction and nonfiction. I write historical and Coming of Age Young Adult novels. I also write picture books and art books for elementary school children. I am in the process of writing a fictionalized biography of a member of the Belgian Resistance who also fought for the US Army during World War II. I worked as a freelance editor for two local companies: College Prowler and SterlingHouse Publisher. I also worked as an assistant literary agent for Lee Shore Agency. I was attending Seton Hill University’s Writing Popular Fiction Program at the time and the experience was invaluable. My course work toward my Master of Arts degree in turn helped me at work. As an assistant literary agent, I reviewed all incoming manuscripts, cultivated a relationship with the writers we contracted and marketed our books to book publishers for sale. I “freelanced” my editing skills which included working with the manuscript acquisitions editor, selecting book covers with the art department, writing the book jacket blurb, reading film scripts and executing general office duties as assigned. Oh, by the way, I edited books, too. I even utilized Adobe InDesign for the editing that I did for College Prowler. I’ve also reviewed published books and conducted research. I have published nonfiction articles and books online and in print. As an artist, I have exhibited my mixed media drawings and collages nationally and regionally and have worked as a freelance designer and calligrapher. I have a BA in Studio Arts from the University of Pittsburgh and a MA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University.

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