November 4, 2009

Saffron Dreams by Shaila Abdullah

BOOK #: 76
REASONS READ: Review Book, Clear Your Shelves Challenge, Countdown Challenge, 21 Cultures Challenge, New Authors Challenge
PUBLISHER: Modern History Press
GENRE: Fiction, Terrorism/War, Historical Fiction, Family Saga, Women's Fiction
FORMAT/PAGES: Paperback/232
RATING: 4.5 Stars

BOOK SUMMARY:You don't know you're a misfit until you are marked as an outcast.
From the darkest hour of American history emerges a mesmerizing tale of tender love, a life interrupted, and faith recovered. Arissa Illahi, a Muslim artist and writer, discovers in a single moment that no matter how carefully you map your life, it is life itself that chooses your destiny. After her husband's death in the collapse of the World Trade Center, the discovery of his manuscript marks Arissa's reconnection to life. Her unborn son and the unfinished novel fuse in her mind into one life-defining project that becomes, at once, the struggle for her emotional survival and the redemption of her race. Saffron Dreams is a novel about our ever evolving identities and the events and places that shape them. It reminds us that in the midst of tragedy, our dreams can become a lasting legacy.

FEELINGS ON THE BOOK: I fell in love with this book on page 3. These are the words that gripped me so: "Who was I bidding farewell to? I wondered: the age-old tradition or the husband I had kept alive in my heart?"

This book was full of contradictory responses for me. The topic was a step outside of my comfort zone and yet the characters were completely comforting to me. The story was tender and it was powerful. It tugged at my heart and it packed a punch. It was just an extraordinary story, in my humble opinion.

  • Abdullah's writing kept me engaged throughout the book and never let my A.D.D. brain wander around.
  • It was culturally diverse (which I love) yet it took place in America (where I live). It dealt with an event I had experienced (9/11) yet I had not come out of it as a pregnant widow (as Arissa did.)
  • I learned while reading this book! You know how I adore that in a book.
  • I thought Arissa, while broken down and against the odds, was a strong lead female character.

  • While I think the title is fresh and attention getting, I didn't really like it for the story. The world is wrapped in saffron dreams- but what does that really even mean?
  • Yeah, that's pretty much it. It was a great book. The only reason I did not give it 5 stars is I don't think I want to read it again. But it is definitely worth reading and I am glad I got the opportunity!

Other Reviews and Opinions on Saffron Dreams:

Today's Adventure
The Printed Page
Violet Crush
At Home with Books
S. Krishna's Books

Have you read and reviewed this book and I missed you? Leave me a comment and I will add your review!

P.S. You can enter to win this book here.


  1. This book in on my TBR list but not yet in my TBR stack! I'm hoping Santa checks out my wish list. Glad to know you liked it so much. I'm sure I'll get to it soon.

  2. I'm glad to see that you liked it so much! Thanks for linking to my review.

  3. After that review, I think I need to move this up in my TBR pile!

  4. I didn't have much interest in this book until I read your review. Thank you!


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