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Sun Behind the Clouds

Princess Siyana's Pen

Princess Siyana's Pen

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Suitable for children aged 5-12 years old.

When evil Shargor captures the baby Princess Siyana and leaves her in a barren land, he thinks his dreams have come true, and that the kingdom of Lusitania is his to rule forever. But as the beautiful and talented princess grows up at El Sol Orphanage in Baetica, her deep connection to God is strengthened with every letter she writes, using her special pen. It seems Siyana never knows her true purpose, until the day of the tornado...
Share in Siyana's epic journey home, as she learns to put her trust and faith in God alone!
Includes a recipe for Pepe's favourite macaroons and a game to play!


Endorsements and Reviews

“Let me start by saying that this is probably one of the best Islamic story books out there for girls in the age bracket of 5-12 quite simply because of the quality of the publication, its glossy illustrations, the wide range of vocabulary used and a good, captivating story-line with a strong female character who has the potential to become a cool role-model if this was to be made into a series.
I read the books to my two girls aged 6 and 10, and they were both gripped from the start. They liked the fact that the names in the book were varied, some Islamic and some not. They loved Princess Siyana's character very much, and the fact that her numerous qualities came across so well through her interaction with other characters in the story, and that she was illustrated both with and without her Hijab on. Even the other characters, although not main, had endearing personalities that the girls found cute. I found that the story evoked a range of emotions in my girls from anticipation to sadness to excitement to laughter and even suspense, and kept them interested until the end. The full-page Disney-style illustrations are very captivating too.
The fact that the book encompasses more than just the one 'moral of the story' and has several positive messages to take-away makes it all the more likeable, and admittedly, I as an adult, found an especially beautiful thing to take away from it myself. It is definitely worth buying and keeping, since both my younger one as well as my older one found age-appropriate lessons therein, and have picked up the book again to read by themselves. Other bonus points are the inclusion of a recipe (easy enough for the kids to make) and related activities at the back of the book, without giving too much away!”
Nazmina Dhanji: Head of Arabic at Al-Mahdi Institute; Mother of Three; Translator and Teacher


“I have had the pleasure of meeting the vibrant, dynamic author of Princess Siyana's Pen, Zainab Merchant, who has taken her extraordinary qualities and put them into this fine work of a classic fairy tale infused with Islamic wisdom and morals. The heroine Siyana embodies Islamic ethics with strength, dignity, and feminine grace; something our community needs to cherish and benefit from in this day and age. Our young girls will certainly treasure and get excited about a heroine to whom they can relate and with whom they can fill their imaginations and dreams. So often in our push for academic achievement and rankings, we underestimate the critical role of imagination, dreams, and creativity. Our children, both girls and boys, can enjoy this well-crafted and beautifully illustrated Islamic fairy tale, that speaks to their identity and innate desire for goodness and justice. Inshallah, we see more from this talented author to give our Muslim children a place to dream, envision, and grow.”
Sister Nicole Correri: Educational Consultant


“This is one of the best books I've read in a long time, and it has quickly made it to my 'Top 10 of all time'.
From the first moment, I fell in love with this book, and the beautiful princess "Siyana" who possessed both beauty and brains! 
The story touches the heart of each and every one of us. Through the trials and tribulations, we find the young girl's unmatched resilience, humility, steadfastness in her faith in Allah (swt)'s greater plan and wisdom. At every hurdle on her path, she finds courage through her connection with God! 
What a pragmatic, charismatic and fantastic role model and icon for children and adults alike! I would recommend this book highly.”
Sister Nasim Walji Pirmohamed: Lecturer, Life Coach and avid reader


“I have just finished reading "Princess Siyana's Pen" and by far it is one of the best books I have read! From the extremely well written story to the phenominal graphics. It is a book that gives the full experience. Thank you for writing it - You are an inspiration… Alhamdullilah!”
Shazia Yusufali


“Princess siyana is such an amazing book for little muslimahs. I've bought it for my daughter, my nieces and my friends little girl. Not only does it give the girls a strong female superhero but the book also opens up various discussion points such as communicating with Allah, hijab and salat (to name a few). My daughter was too young to sit through the whole story at first but the story can easily be shortened by parents and still get the messages across. The pictures to the book are also fantastic and very inviting.”
Irem Ravjani: mother of two


About the Author

Zainab Merchant holds a double degree in Political Science and Homeland Security from Virginia Commonwealth University and has worked in the Non-Profit Sector over the years tackling humanitarian issues globally and domestically. Now she spends her days as a homeschooling-horseriding-political activist-stay-at-home mom and nights as a graduate student in Writing and Literature. She lives in sunny Orlando, Florida with her husband and two spirited little boys.



My deepest gratitude to…
God Almighty for giving me the strength and courage to do this work
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) and his family for their light and guidance
My parents for their love, prayers and sacrifices 
Rizwan, my soul mate and the greatest blessing in my life 
Kamaal, Hadi, Hamza and Mokhtar, my princes in shining armor 
Masuma, my sister, my joy and the best part of me
My publisher, Tehseen, for her friendship, patience, vision and sincerity
Shahraiz, for his creativity, insight and hard work 
Fatema Kermalli for her eagle eye and all those who proofread and contributed
My family, relatives and friends for their unwavering support and encouragement 
Nargis aunty and her green parrot Pepe who gave me so much happiness in my childhood
Orphans around the world who face the world with bravery and faith; you were my inspiration
In memory of my late father Abbas Parpia




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