The Blessed Bananas by Tayyaba Syed
📚 BOOK REVIEW 📚
Title: The Blessed Bananas: A Muslim Fable
Author: Tayyaba Syed
Illustrator: Melani Putri
Rating: 7/10 🌟
Rico, an ungrateful monkey, lives in a tree that fruits an abundant amount of bananas. He does not thank Allah for this great blessing rather, he believes that it was all due to his hard work. When a hungry mouse, Chico, asks Rico for a banana, he is rudely refused. When a toucan, Tucana, asks if she can rest on his tree, he shoos her away angrily. When Simon, the elephant, has been separated from his herd and asks Rico to spot them in which direction they are going, annoyingly, Rico once again refuses. As Simon anxiously paces back and forth, he slips on a banana peel which causes him to shake Rico's tree uncontrollably. All the bananas fall off the tree and on the ground. Despite Rico's selfishness, Chico and Tucana, come to the rescue and the little mouse knows exactly what to say. He reminds Simon to recite the salawat alan Nabi (saws) and once he does, all the chaos comes to an end. Finally, Rico learns his lesson though this great ordeal.
This Muslim fable teaches the reader a few things: being grateful, kindness, generosity, power of prayer, importance of having good friends, the benefits of reciting salawat upon the Prophet (saws) and the importance of responding with goodness even when we are faced with negativity. This is a nice teachable story to the young readers. It is exactly what to look for in a book, an engaging story with a relatable message that has Islamic lessons incorporated in it. However, I feel like the salawat alan Nabi (saws) is incorrectly used here. I can't really make the connection between it bringing calm and tranquility in the story to any of the benefits listed at the end of the book. For this reason, I feel like it is forced into the story. Using the remembrance of Allah to bring the calm and peace would have been more fitting, but that's just me. 🌸
This is a bit of a long story so you might find the younger kids drift off and lose their focus during the read. The illustrations are beautiful and expressive. It also includes 4 banana recipes.