The greedy and power-hungry vice-regent Abrahah
intends to divert the world’s pilgrims
from the Kaaba, the House of Allah, in Mecca,
to the cathedral his slaves have built for him.
But when the cathedral’s spires finally slice the brilliant Yemeni skies
and the magnificent doors are opened,
the throngs Abrahah has been boasting about do not arrive.
In a rage, he vows to destroy the Kaaba,
but Allah, the Causer of all causes, has other plans.
True happenings, stranger by far than fiction, demonstrate that if He says, “Be!” it is,
it surely is.
This telling of the events behind the Chapter of the Elephant of the Glorious Qur’an was chosen for Second Prize in the Islamic Foundation’s 2005 Writing for Children competition. The audio Cd was produced in Amman in 2006 and the illustrated book was published by the Foundation in 2007.
THE CD Audio sample:
A review from one of our readers:
“MashaAllah! My children still listen to your retelling of the Year of the Elephant and love it!” Roxanne Umm Sahla, (KUWAIT)
Reviews from Amazon.com:
“My husband and I purchased the audio recording of this story when our daughter was about 15 months old and I played it almost every day for a few weeks. It was the first recorded story that I ever played just for her and I wasn’t sure how she would react. She LOVED it! Even though she was too young to understand the content of the story, she would obviously be paying close attention to the sound effects and the voice of the storyteller. She would bounce up and and down to the beat of the drums, and repeat “Allah!” whenever she heard it being said in the story. Playing the story would almost immediately quiet her if she was feeling cranky and put a big smile on her face especially as she “danced” to the drumbeats. Now, as a 20-something-year-old adult, I have to say that I was a bit surprised by how much *I* really enjoyed the story! I am not ashamed to admit that I actually cried during my first listening of the story because of Mehded’s vivid descriptions and storytelling style. A few of the more dramatic points in the story got me quite emotional! I read the book after listening to the story many times and was mildly disappointed by the illustrations because I had already developed very detailed images in my mind of the whole story.” Umm Hamza (UAE)
“Even very young children love the language and walk around repeating parts of it as they listen…the best language instruction you could ever give a toddler.” Abu Yusuf, (AMMAN)
THE ILLUSTRATED BOOK:
Reviews from Amazon.com:
“great for allowing young readers to review and retell the story in their own voice… a fine example of a beautiful Islamic story in very descriptive and well-written English–definitely a must-have book for one’s growing children’s library. Additional positive aspects of the book and recording include the fact that they teach the reader/listener about the history tied to a chapter of the Qur’an and about reliance on God when facing any difficulty. PLUS the story is very well researched and has been checked by reliable scholars. Overall, Miraculous Happenings in the Year of the Elephant–both the book and recording–are great tools for developing your and your child(ren)’s love for reading stories and storytelling, while learning about Islam and developing love for God and the Prophet Muhammad at the same time.” Umm Hamza, (UAE)
“a beautiful hard-cover book, one your children will want to read again and again with or without the CD, improving their grasp of well-written English along the way.” Abu Yusuf, (AMMAN)
You can order the book from Amazon.com or .UK
You can order the book and the CD from The Islamic Foundation, www.islamic-foundation.org.uk
MEHDED MARYAM SINCLAIR
Nur al Qasas, The Light of the Spoken Word
When you hear, you’ll see