Like the Moon Loves the Sky by Hena Khan, illustrated by Safa Khan
Like the Moon Loves the Sky
by Hena Khan
illustrated by Saffa Khan
Review Copy from Chronicle Books
Like the Moon Loves the Sky is a lyrical love song to all children, with each of the lines based on a verse of the Quran. A note from Hena Khan at the start of the book introduces and defines the phrase, "inshallah," which starts off every page, noting that it "expresses a common theme found in other languages and cultures," such as "ojalá" in Spanish and "God willing" in English. She goes on to write, "As a parent, my most frequent prayers and wishes are for my children. . . These are universal values that transcend any particular belief system, and I hope they will resonate with all readers." The simplicity, beauty and love expressed on each page, through words and illustrations, definitely resonate while the warmth of the illustrations wraps readers in a comforting hug. Saffa Khan's rich oranges, yellows and blues illuminate the emotions of the book and show this Muslim family's love and connection as the baby of the first page that reads, "Inshallah you are all that is gentle and good," grows into a toddler then school-age child. Khan also brings diversity to the page, with characters having brown skin that varies with each individual, characters wearing hijab and an alternately abled character. She also includes the word "inshallah" in Arabic in the illustrations.
Like the Moon Loves the Sky is a marvelous celebration of love and a parent's hope for a child, made special by the Quran inspired words that serve, as Khan writes in her author's note, as "guidelines on how to live a thoughtful and grounded life filled with fairness, charity, justice, and most of all, love."
Also by Hena Khan - reviews to come!