Book Reviews

Review: Once Upon an Eid: Stories of Hope and Joy by 15 Muslim Voices edited by S.K. Ali & Aisha Saeed

Once Upon an Eid is one of those anthologies that still brings me joy even days after finishing. I’m used to not loving every story when I read an anthology. But that’s not the case with Once Upon an Eid! It’s an anthology full of joy, identity, and family. Keep reading this book review of Once Upon an Eid to get excited for this anthology.


Once Upon an Eid is a collection of short stories that showcases the most brilliant Muslim voices writing today, all about the most joyful holiday of the year: Eid!

Eid: The short, single-syllable word conjures up a variety of feelings and memories for Muslims. Maybe it’s waking up to the sound of frying samosas or the comfort of bean pie, maybe it’s the pleasure of putting on a new outfit for Eid prayers, or maybe it’s the gift-giving and holiday parties to come that day. Whatever it may be, for those who cherish this day of celebration, the emotional responses may be summed up in another short and sweet word: joy. The anthology will also include a poem, graphic-novel chapter, and spot illustrations.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

Once Upon an Eid is a celebration of joy. I am truly lacking the words for this perfect anthology. I’m not an ownvoices reader, but I loved how the stories are hopeful and endearing. Featuring a range of stories, it is an anthology full of fierce families and identity. It’s exactly the book I needed right now to instill me with joy and smiles. I didn’t expect to love all the stories, because experience has taught me that doesn’t normally happen, but I did! It’s a book I cannot recommend more highly to people, especially now.

There’s such a variety of totally precious characters. Full of different families who celebrate Eid as we look at what it means to them, their family, and community. There’s also a graphic novel in here which I loved! Once Upon an Eid is full of stories that unite, thrill, and comfort. They celebrate our places in the community and family. I just can’t get over how much I love this anthology. Words don’t do this collection justice.

Not to mention it just felt like such perfect timing. In times when we are searching for moments of happiness, celebration, and joy, Once Upon an Eid delivers on all that and more. Find Once Upon an Eid on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, & The Book Depository.


What is your favorite anthology?

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