Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Jennifer Zobair

Jennifer Zobair grew up in Iowa and attended Smith College and Georgetown Law School. She has practiced corporate and immigration law and as a convert to Islam, has been a strong advocate for Muslim women's rights. Zobair lives with her husband and three children outside of Boston, Massachusetts.

Her new novel is Painted Hands.

Recently I asked the author about what she was reading. Zobair's reply:
I’m currently reading Corner Shop by Roopa Farooki. Full disclosure: Roopa blurbed my novel. Fuller disclosure: I have been a fan of her fiction for years, long before I needed blurbs or had a book deal or even an agent. I started with Bitter Sweets and rushed to read Half Life. I was hooked.

Roopa is inordinately skilled at drawing rich, vivid characters, some of whom are such beautiful messes. She doesn’t shy away from the ways we are broken, and the ways we sometimes try to patch those places with things that are harmful to us. Her writing is at once lyrical and unflinching. And although she writes about characters from South Asian backgrounds, there is an unmistakable universality in all of it. We can relate. We might even be some of her characters.

I would still love these books if they were written by someone else. Roopa is a skilled storyteller and these are compelling narratives. That she writes as a Muslim woman, though, is not such a small thing. As a Muslim woman with my own debut novel that may generate some controversy both within and without the Muslim community, I find comfort in her commitment to writing big, bold stories, in her daring to tell the truth.
Visit Jennifer Zobair's website, Facebook page, and Twitter perch.

The Page 69 Test: Painted Hands.

My Book, The Movie: Painted Hands.

--Marshal Zeringue