Muslim Writers Awards

The annual Muslim Writers Awards recognises the breadth and quality of literary talent within the UK’s Muslim community.

There are categories for Fiction, nonfiction, Journalism, Unpublished Poetry, Unpublished Novels, Unpublished Short Stories, Unpublished – Children’s stories and Under-16s Categories. The latter includes a poetry and short story category and is broken down by age categories; 8-10, 11-13 and 14-16. Further details are at the awards website.

2009 Winners and Shortlists

ISBN: 9781408804278 - Burnt Shadows | ISBN: 9780141035642 - The Road from Damascus | ISBN: 9780747597131 - In Other Rooms, Other Wonders | ISBN: 9780553818765 - In Arabian Nights | ISBN: 9780349121376 - The Marriage Bureau for Rich People


Winner: Kamila Shamsie, Burnt Shadows, Bloomsbury

In a prison cell in the US, a man stands trembling, naked, fearfully waiting to be shipped to Guantanamo Bay. How did it come to this? he wonders August 9th, 1945, Nagasaki. Hiroko Tanaka steps out onto her veranda, taking in the view of the terraced slopes leading up to the sky. Wrapped in a kimono with three black cranes swooping across the back, she is twenty-one, in love with the man she is to marry, Konrad Weiss. In a split second, the world turns white. In the next, it explodes with the sound of fire and the horror of realisation. In the numbing aftermath of a bomb that obliterates everything she has known, all that remains are the bird-shaped burns on her back, an indelible reminder of the world she has lost. In search of new beginnings, she travels to Delhi two years later. There she walks into the lives of Konrad's half-sister, Elizabeth, her husband James Burton, and their employee Sajjad Ashraf, from whom she starts to learn Urdu..

Robin Yassin-kassab, The Road from Damascus , Hamish Hamilton - It is summer 2001 and Sami Traifi is struggling. His wife Muntaha has just announced that she is taking up the hijab. Furious with Muntaha, he finds himself embarking on a spontaneous quest for meaning and fulfillment, but all too soon his search...

Daniyal Mueenuddin, In Other Rooms, Other Wonders , Bloomsbury -A powerful collection of linked stories about the entwined lives of masters and servants set in Pakistan The linked stories in In Other Rooms, Other Wonders illuminate a place and a people as they describe the overlapping worlds of an extended...

Tahir Shah, In Arabian Nights , Bantam - Collects traditional stories of Morocco that are recounted by an eccentric cast of characters: from master masons who work only at night to Sufi wise men who write for soap operas and Tuareg guides addicted to reality TV. Shortly after the 2005...

Farahad Zama, The Marriage Bureau for Rich People , Abacus - Charming and funny yet acutely observed, this is what Jane Austen might write if she set a story in a contemporary Indian marriage bureau. What does somebody with a wealth of common sense do if retirement palls? Why, open a marriage bureau...

Judges: Miranda Mckearney, Qaisra Shahraz and Zarah Hussain


ISBN: 9781845134280 - Love in a Headscarf |ISBN: 9780955235924 - In the Land of the Ayatollahs Tupac Shakur is King | ISBN: 9781844671694 - My Grandmother |ISBN: 9781844082704 - The Making of Mr Hai's Daughter | ISBN: 9780745632896 - Multiculturalism

Winner: Shelina Zahra Janmohamed, Love in a Headscarf: Muslim woman seeks the One , Aurum Press -

Shelina is keeping a very surprising secret under her headscarf - she wants to fall in love.

Torn between the Buxom Aunties, romantic comedies and mosque Imams, she decides to follow the arranged-marriage route to finding Mr Right, Muslim-style. Shelina's journey begins as a search for the One, but along the way she also discovers her faith and herself.

A memoir with a hilarious twist from one of Britain's leading female Muslim writers, Love in a Headscarf is an entertaining, fresh and unmissable insight into what it means to be a young British Muslim woman

Shahzad Aziz, In the Land of the Ayatollahs Tupac Shakur Is King: Reflections from Iran and the Arab World Amal Press- Using the cities and culture of the Middle East as a backdrop, this study explores issues within the Arab world and in its relations with the West. Serious debate is interspersed with witty travel dialogue to discuss many issues facing the Eastern...

Fethiye Cetin, My Grandmother: A Memoir , Verso- When Fethiye Cetin was growing up in the small Turkish town of Maden, she knew her grandmother as a happy and universally respected Muslim housewife. It would be decades before her grandmother told her the truth: that she was by birth a Christian...

Yasmin Hai, The Making of Mr Hai's Daughter: Becoming British The Making of Mr Hai’s Daughter: Becoming British, Virago - With the humour and passion of Hanif Kureishi and Meera Syal - an amazing story about identity and roots and a daughter's understanding of her father Mr Hai arrived in London in 1964. But, while becoming British via a passport had been...

Tariq Modood, Multiculturalism (Themes for the 21st Century Series) , Polity Press- KEN LANGDON has worked for many major computer companies world-wide, including Hewlett Packard and DEC, and is presently the non-executive chairman for SofTools, a supplier of electronic Integrated Support Systems, and Glenhurst Ltd...

Judges: Dr Claire Chambers, Dr Tahir Abbas, Hannah Westland and Dele Fatunla

2008 Award Winners


Shelina JanMohamed - for Series of short articles

Under 16's

Hamaira Rashid


Shameam Akhtar -Collection

Short Story

Kashif Choudry for Bedtime


Fatima Martin for When the Mountains are Scattered as Dust

Best Children's

Aliya Vaughan for Sulaiman at the Quad Bike Race

Writer of the Year

Aliya Vaughan

Published Writer

Moazzam Begg


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