Title: In the name of God
Author: Paula Jolin
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press (April 3, 2007)
Setting: Damascus (Syria)
Rating: 4.75 out of 5
In the name of God was a very unusual book. It’s how a 17 year old girl, Nadia, turns from being a devout Muslim to a fanatic. It makes us realize that there is a very thin line between the very religious and the fanatic if there are people who know how to exploit it.
Nadia lives in Damascus, Syria with her mother and brother. Nadia just wants to walk the path of God, do whatever he asks and be a good Muslim. But when the conditions in Syria worsen, the conflicts between the Muslims and the Syrian Government are on the rise and American Bombs are attacking the neighboring countries, Nadia is forced to direct her devotion on a path that she thinks will take her directly to heaven.
In the name of God gives us a good insight into how a transformation like this can occur and how people are ready to do anything for religion.
There were some of the arguments that I had to agree made sense. I had to agree with Nadia’s point of view at times. But sometimes, even if I did understand I did not agree with her.
This book could work both ways actually. It could be a great read for American teens to see the world from others eyes. I would like to think most of them already know the consequences of the war but this book would give them an experience of being on the other side of the fence.
On the other hand, I hate to say this, but this book could feed into the psyche of someone who is already on the path of being a fanatic because the arguments in this book are good on both sides. But as we all know, people see what they want to. I just hope what I’m saying is wrong because this book is good and deserves a wider readership.
One more thing, it’s a YA book but I don’t know what else can be called a cross over, if not this.
Note: You need to know the basics of Syrian history. Just Google a bit and you’re set to go.
12 thoughts on “In the name of God by Paula Jolin”
Wow, this is a YA book? The content discusses some very deep issues. Thanks for the review, Violet.
Looks really intense even for YA . . You have given well thought out and an unbiased review for this one ..If I find this book , I am surely gonna read it .
Wow, this sounds very intense and very important. Thanks for your review.
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I agree that it sounds pretty ntense for a YA book. Sounds like it does a great job of showing both sides.
I think teenagers are particularly susceptible to fanaticism, or at least some of them are. This sounds like a very important book, but also a bit threatening–like something some American Christian group would immediately want to ban.
Nah…I don’t think there is anything an American Christian group would want to ban because the book does not bash any side, neither the American, nor the Muslim.
It does seem like something teens should read, but like you said, it can work both ways. Sometimes, even if it is really angering, I think teens (and adults) need to see what it’s like on the other side even if they disagree whole heartedly and the material makes them even more uproarious. Hopefully through seeing what the other side believes whether it be about social topics or war, they will be able to make coherent, logical, and informed arguments rather than hate filled, fanatical ones.
Wow, this sounds like a very thought-provoking book.
I think this is something I’d really like to read. I’m an Atheist and, while I do believe everyone’s entitled to believe in what they wish, I think it’s so importan to keep religion away from state. I look at our ex-prime minister, Tony Blair, who only came out about his Catholicism once he’d left office. In America the majority of the country’s population can’t even tolerate the idea that they’d have an atheist president.
This sounds really interesting!