Writers & Illustrators

M.O. Yuksel’s passion for writing stems from the fact that she’s constantly learning new things and loves to share them with the world. As a lifelong learner and writer, she highly recommends the following wonderful resources to help further craft.



Listen to these great podcasts on your long commutes, while cooking, and maybe mountain climbing (?)… Enjoy!


  • The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
  • Writing Picture Books by Ann Whitford Paul
  • Craft in the Real World by Matthew Salesses
  • Story Genius by Lisa Cron
  • On Writing by Stephen King
  • Save the Cat by Blake Snyder
  • Magic Words by Cheryl Klein
  • Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
  • Real Revision by Kate Messner
  • Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Dear Genius: The Letters of Ursula Nordstorm by Leonard S. Marcus
  • This is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett
  • Ordinary Genius by Kim Addonizio
  • Poems are Teachers by Amy Ludwig Vanderwater



Picture Books

The best way to learn how to write picture books, or how to write in any genre, is to read voraciously in that genre. For a list of highly anticipated picture books coming out in 2021 and beyond, visit Picture Book Playground and Soaring 20’s promo group books.

Books by Muslim Authors

If you would like to read recently published books (2015 – 2024) created by Muslim authors, here’s a great list to start you off:

Picture Books

  • Halal Hot Dogs by Susannah Aziz, illustrated by Parwinder Singh
  • Amira’s Picture Day by Reem Faruqi, illustrated by Fahmida Azim
  • The Proudest Blue by Ibtihaj Muhammad with S.K. Ali, illustrated by Hatem Aly
  • The Gift of Ramadan by Rabiah York Lumbard, Illustrated by Laura K. Horton
  • The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story by Aya Khalil and Anait Semirdzhyan
  • Your Name is a Song by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow, illustrated by Luisa Uribe
  • Not Quite Snow White by Ashley Franklin, illustrated by Ebony Glenn
  • Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow, illustrated by Ebony Glenn
  • Muslim Girls Rise by Saira Mir, illustrated by Aaliya Jaleel
  • Lailah’s Lunchbox by Reem Faruqi, illustrated by Lea Lyon
  • Under My Hijab by Hena Khan, illustrated by Aaliya Jaleel
  • Like the Moon Loves the Sky by Hena Khan, illustrated by Saffa Khan
  • Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets: A Muslim Book of Shapes by Hena Khan, illustrated by Mehrdokht Amini
  • Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai, illustrated by Kerascoet
  • Bilal Cooks Daal by Aisha Saeed, illustrated by Anoosha Syed
  • One Wish: Fatima al-Fihri & the World’s Oldest University by M.O. Yuksel, illustrated by Mariam Quraishi 
  • Moon’s Ramadan by Natasha Kazi
  • The Kindest Red by Ibtihaj Muhammad and Hatem Aly
  • Ramadan Kareem by M.O. Yuksel and Hatem Aly
  • Sami’s Special Gift: An Eid al-Adha Story by M.O. Yuksel and Huseyin Sonmezay
  • Mama Shamsi at the Bazaar By Samira Irvani
  • The Night Before Eid by Aya Khalil
  • Egyptian Lullaby by Zeena Pliska
  • Eleven Words for Love: A Journey Through Arabic Expressions of Love by Randa Abdel-Fattah
  • Sitti’s Olive Trees by Ndaa Hassan
  • We are Palestinian: A Celebration of Culture and Tradition by Reem Kassis
  • Olive Harvest in Palestine by Wafa Shami
  • Baba, What Does My Name Mean by Rifk Ebeid
  • Salat in Secret by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow
  • The Banned Book Sale by Aya Khalil
  • Egypt by Aya Khalil
  • These Olive Trees by Aya Ghanemeh
  • Always Sisters by Saira Mir
  • Milloo’s Mind by Reem Faruqi
  • The Moon from Dehradun: A Story of Partition by Shirin Shamsi
  • Dear Muslim Child by Rahma Rodaah
  • The Book that Almost Rhymed by Omar Abed
  • Do You Even Know Me? by Reem Faruqi
  • Noura’s Crescent Moon by Zainab Khan and Nabila Adani
  • Insha’Allah, No, Maybe So by Rhonda Roumani and Olivia Aserr

Chapter Books

  • Nadia and Nadir by Marzieh Ali
  • Meet Yasmin by Saadia Faruqi and Hatem Aly

Middle Grade & Young Adult Books

  • Much Ado About Nada by Uzma Jalaluddin
  • Tagging Freedom by Rhonda Roumani
  • Grounded by Aisha Saeed
  • Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan
  • More to the Story by Hena Khan
  • Call Me Adnan by Reem Faruqi
  • Huda F Cares by Huda Fahmy
  • Amal Unbound by Aisha Saeed
  • Ahmed Aziz’s Epic Year by Nina Hamza
  • Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga
  • It Ain’t So Awful, Falafel by Firoozeh Dumas
  • Barakah Beats by Maleeha Siddiqui
  • Shooting Kabul by N.H. Senzai
  • Piece by Piece by Priya Huq
  • Rumaysa by Radiya Hafiza
  • Unsettled by Reem Faruqi
  • Saving Sunshine by Saadia Faruqi
  • Once Upon an Eid by S.K. Ali
  • Yusuf Azeem is not a Hero by Saadia Faruqi
  • The Unlovable Alina Butt by Ambreen Butt-Hussain
  • Fatima Tate Takes the Cake by Khadijah VanBrakle
  • Hope Ablaze by Sarah Mughal Rana