Book bans becoming ‘a terrifying trend’ Guest Comments

Hena Khan was raised in the Washington suburbs, the daughter of immigrants from Pakistan, and she describes the experience this way: “When I was growing up, it was really more about feeling invisible and not thinking my culture mattered. Nobody at school knew anything about being a Muslim, being a Pakistani American. My teachers often couldn’t identify Pakistan on a map.”

An avid reader, she’d trek weekly to the local library, but could never find books with characters who looked — or believed — like her. So, after becoming the mother of two sons, she started writing them herself: a variety of picture books and young adult novels spotlighting Muslims and mosques, hijabs and holidays. “I want to write stories where my kids and others like them could finally see themselves,” she tells me.

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