The Butterfly Mosque

The Butterfly Mosque

Book - 2010
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Baker & Taylor
Documents the author's conversion from all-American atheist to Islam, a journey marked by her decision to relocate to Cairo, romance with a passionate young Egyptian, and her efforts to balance the virtues of both cultures.

Perseus Publishing
The extraordinary story of an all-American girl’s conversion to Islam and her ensuing romance with a young Egyptian man, The Butterfly Mosque is a stunning articulation of a Westerner embracing the Muslim world.

When G. Willow Wilson?already an accomplished writer on modern religion and the Middle East at just twenty-seven?leaves her atheist parents in Denver to study at Boston University, she enrolls in an Islamic Studies course that leads to her shocking conversion to Islam and sends her on a fated journey across continents and into an uncertain future.

She settles in Cairo where she teaches English and submerges herself in a culture based on her adopted religion. And then she meets Omar, a passionate young man with a mild resentment of the Western influences in his homeland. They fall in love, entering into a daring relationship that calls into question the very nature of family, belief, and tradition. Torn between the secular West and Muslim East, Willow records her intensely personal struggle to forge a ?third culture” that might accommodate her own values without compromising the friends and family on both sides of the divide.

The extraordinary story of an all-American girl’s conversion to Islam and her ensuing romance with a young Egyptian man,The Butterfly Mosque is a stunning articulation of a Westerner embracing the Muslim world.

When G. Willow Wilsonalready an accomplished writer on modern religion and the Middle East at just twenty-sevenleaves her atheist parents in Denver to study at Boston University, she enrolls in an Islamic Studies course that leads to her shocking conversion to Islam and sends her on a fated journey across continents and into an uncertain future.

She settles in Cairo where she teaches English and submerges herself in a culture based on her adopted religion. And then she meets Omar, a passionate young man with a mild resentment of the Western influences in his homeland. They fall in love, entering into a daring relationship that calls into question the very nature of family, belief, and tradition. Torn between the secular West and Muslim East, Willow records her intensely personal struggle to forge a third culture” that might accommodate her own values without compromising the friends and family on both sides of the divide.


Baker
& Taylor

Documents the author's conversion from an all-American atheist to a member of the Islamic faith, a journey marked by her decision to relocate to Cairo, romance with a passionate young Egyptian and effort to balance the values of both cultures.

Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Atlantic Monthly Press, 2010
ISBN: 9780802118875
0802118879
Characteristics: 304 p. ; 22 cm

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m
mminhas_0
May 01, 2017

The author has done a very good job in explaining the challenges one can face in the course of adopting a new religion and getting settled in a new country/culture. The book also highlights some of the important aspects of Islam which are not commonly shown over the mainstream media.All in all its a good read.

s
Shellie1_us
Feb 21, 2017

I read the book and it was okay. I agree with another poster, the author from interview I read, and her statements does seem to be very self important. The story seemed to be she had no religious background, so as an adult she became intrigued with Islam. She went to Cairo to work, and meets a guy who she basically proposed to a bit later. She converts to Islam and becomes a Muslim, and marries the guy. The Butterfly mosque had a beautiful name but she never really talks about going to worship at the mosque.

i
IV27HUjg
Jan 02, 2016

I'm more likely to believe Geraldine Brooks take on the subject - Nine Parts of Desire.

i
IV27HUjg
Jan 02, 2016

No rating. I didn't have any similar feelings or agreement with the other reviews. She makes a promise on 'if I do this or that I'll convert or believe...' Right away I was put off by her telling how during a university lecture she talks so much that another in the hall has to shush her twice. Self-important attitude with no respect for others. Falls in love with some man almost upon meeting, converts, etc. It might be interesting the check her out in another 15 years time to see what her beliefs & actions become.

r
romatomatoes
Sep 14, 2015

If I had a top 10 list for books I've read over the past year, I'd definitely add the Butterfly Mosque. Why? Because it stretched my thinking. I have pretty much zero interest in Islam, yet the author was somehow able to bridge that chasm for me ( I would characterize the author as seeming to be more of a Sufi than anything). She also writes for the new Ms. Marvel, creating a refreshingly desexualized character.

i
ilovewhippets
May 20, 2014

Wonderful, auto-biographical, true tale of an American woman, teaching in Cairo, converting to Islam, and marrying into a caring, warm Muslim family! It really helps to understand our misconceptions of the Muslim worldview, and how we are guided and misguided by our Govts and media about what is really going on.. Highly recommend it!

guynesegal Jul 07, 2013

An excellent read I stumbled on, when buying time in the library while waiting to use one of the computers. Very inspiring to me. She is my new favorite author.

nuztorad Mar 09, 2013

An engaging, insightful and moving book about a very human experience. Many people can relate to the sentiments and events in Wilson's life, I think, or if not can benefit from the open and straight-forward way she explains how and why things happen. It will certainly challenge any stereotype people have of converts to Islam, of the Middle East, of Islam and its followers and of what it means to "belong" to a country or culture. Truly, it is a story of many migrations: of the body, of the mind and of the heart.

s
S2Hofforth
Dec 14, 2010

Enjoyable, with interesting stories and insights into a Muslim woman's life in Cairo. There were some moving moments, but nothing that would shock. The story was well written and I liked the romance and the flow of it.

Scout_WPL Oct 01, 2010

Has helped change some of my misconceptions/ prejudice. The telling of her story is not judgemental but rather bridges new understanding between the different cultures of the West (Boulder) and East (Cairo) as Wilson tells of her personal experience of transition.

Those seeking another view of the life a woman of Muslim faith should add this title to their reading list.

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