Zain's Super Friday

By Kirkus Reviews

A young Muslim boy goes to the mosque with his father.

Zain wakes up ready to play at battling space aliens with his father. Disappointed that Dad must work, Zain busies himself with other adventures. When they head out for Friday prayers, Zain rushes to the playground, but his father gently guides him to the mosque. They perform wudu—the ritual washing up before prayers—and Zain’s attention wavers again as they remove their shoes, enter the prayer hall, and settle in to listen to the imam’s sermon. Zain is fidgety, and just as the congregation lines up for prayers, he makes a beeline for the front. The imam spots him and asks him to lead prayers with him. Zain prays with the imam, reining in his distractions, and his proud father treats him to a special reward after. Featuring a playful father-son dynamic, this tale explores Islamic rituals and traditions on the holiest day of the Muslim week, when Muslims gather for jumu’ah prayers. Though Zain may be antsy, his patient father and the imam foster a warm community spirit—it’s clear everyone is welcome here. Cartoon illustrations propel a fun and lively story that captures the spirited young boy’s energy. Zain and his dad are brown-skinned; their mosque is diverse.

A lovely tale of father-son bonding set against the backdrop of jumu’ah prayers at the mosque.