Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah

Genre:  Realistic Fiction

Age Level:  12 and up

# of Pages:  360

RAC Book:  Yes

Amal, an Australian-Palestinian girl living in Melbourne, decides to “go full time” and wear her hijab, the Muslim head scarf, at all times.  This is a very big decision for Amal because post 9/11 there are a lot of mixed feelings about Muslims all around the world.  Amal decides that she wants to show her devotion to her religion by wearing her head scarf at all times knowing how difficult it will be.  For example, her parents are concerned about how Amal will feel if she gets any negative attention cast toward her.  Her prep school principal has trouble with it and doesn’t want to alter the strict dress code.  The students at her school are also confused the first time they see Amal wearing her head scarf, but once they feel comfortable enough to ask questions they come to understand why she wants to wear it.

All of Amal’s friends are dealing with different cultural and societal pressures at the same time she is coping with this big change.  Soon Amal comes to see that her life is not nearly as difficult as some since her parents are always so supportive and never force her to do anything she doesn’t want to.  The supporting characters are all interesting and reflect different viewpoints at this time of growing diversity.  Although this might be a tough sell to teens I think those who do read it will gain a lot of knowledge about tolerance and understanding in this complex time we live in. 

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9 Responses to “Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah”


  1. 1 Josette June 25, 2008 at 5:20 am

    True, this can be an educational read not only for young adults but for everyone. I’m glad I read this book, it’s so enjoyable. Randa’s writing was definitely easy to read and I some of her jokes.

    Well, the conversations with Mrs. Vaselli were quite difficult to read though and I had to translate them into proper English in my head. :D

    Anyway, here is my review of this book!

  2. 2 Pavlina August 10, 2008 at 10:56 am

    I am not teen, but I read this book and I liked it very much. It helped me learn more about teens and Arabian girls in Western world. I am really pleased that there is a woman who is able to decribe how the Arabian gils cope with their culture and backrounds in Western world. Well done! This book is nice!

  3. 3 Rema February 3, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    i love this book sooo much it made me make the wonderful desion of becoming a full- timer!! :-)) i was on the border line of choosing yes or no and i choose yes b/c of this book!! it changed my life!!

  4. 4 Yasmeen April 27, 2009 at 12:52 am

    I really liked this book i faced many difficulties with the hijab but continued wearing it because i had faith and thats something Amal Had in this Book it was a great book and made me feel as if i was the character i believe this book is great to read not only if you are a teen but if u are an adult i have bought the book and i advertise it to many of my friends Well Job Randa and is hoping to read more books like Ten Things I hate About Me! The Title In Both Books Captivate me and especially in `Does My Head Look Big In this`

  5. 5 Sophie May 28, 2009 at 1:41 am

    I am a Teenager, and for a school task i had to read this book and i thoughly enjoyed it!!! it made me realise what Arabian girls have to go through and it sent me out of class with a broarder mind! Just want to say what a great book and congratulations to the author!
    xxxx

  6. 6 Rosy October 17, 2009 at 12:05 am

    Omg…this book is amazing and a very appealing book..It made me understand what muslim woman go through because of wearing a veil. Many people view them in different ways and perspectives. Amal went through many struggles but at the end she succeeded and became a true muslim. This book is for everyone it is not only for teenagers. I gained a lot of knowledge about tolerance and understanding in this complex time we live in.

  7. 7 Hannah Shaban December 31, 2010 at 3:05 am

    Wow this book is a great book that i think of truly. even my mom liked it omg…………

  8. 8 Naazneen Suliman March 16, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    Does my head look big in this? is a fantastic book, it inspires you to stay true to your own morals and values, it also teaches you to stand up for yourself and what you believe in. The author executed this book perfectly as she combined modern- day-teen with traditional Islamic Values,she also shows the struggles a Muslim girl goes through in the world we live in. I recommend this book to every teenage girl. :)

  9. 9 Fizza July 15, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Can i read this book online for free ??


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