Censored! The Banning of My Books

It’s Banned Books Week! Did you know my first novel, THE JEWEL OF MEDINA, has been banned in several countries including Malaysia and, when I went there in 2011, Egypt? Why? Because I wrote about the Prophet Muhammad and his youngest wife, A’isha. Before it was even released, the book spurred an angry demonstration in […]

“The Jewel of Medina”: Censorship, Islam, and the Historical Fiction Way

WHEN DO WE START BURNING BOOKS? Posted on March 2, 2013by colinfalconer Here’s a question for you: what kind of books should we burn? Mein Kampf? The Satanic Verses? Harry Potter? (Yes, it’s happened.) I have just finished reading The Jewel of Medina,  Sherry Jones’ best-selling novel about the Prophet Muhammad’s child bride Aisha. I thought Sherry courageous to take on […]

What ‘The Innocence of Muslims’ and THE JEWEL OF MEDINA Have in Common

That attack last month on the Libyan consulate and the terrible murder of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens? The riots and demonstrations against the anti-Islam video “The Innocence of Muslims?” It’s exactly what the higher-ups at Random House feared would happen over THE JEWEL OF MEDINA. It’s why they backed out of publishing it. “Riots in […]

Courage, Islam, the West, and THE JEWEL OF MEDINA

I remember the moment I discovered A’isha bint Abi Bakr, the youngest wife of the Prophet Muhammad. I found her in a book on women in Islam that I read after 9/11, when many of us were learning for the first time of the terrible oppression of women in Afghanistan. Nine-year-old A’isha was playing on […]

A’isha Still Inspires Me

Here is the speech I gave on Sept. 11, 2012, at the Spokane Coeur d’Alene Woman Magazine Luncheon: “Moments,” I once wrote, “are the hinges on which the doors of the human universe swing.” I’m here to tell you about some of mine. I remember the moment I discovered A’isha bint Abi Bakr, the youngest […]

How I Got My Agent

The first literary agent who read the manuscript of my first novel snapped it up. Don’t hate me, though: She turned it down the first time she read it, plunging me into despair. Why did Natasha Kern reject my first submission? As so many first-time authors have done, I sent her my first draft. She […]

Passion: More Than Just Play

In 52 years of marriage,Vladimir Nabokov wrote hundreds of love letters to his wife, Vera. This I find touching, even moving. But surprising? Hardly. Nabokov was a writer, after all, and no doubt he expressed himself most perfectly via the written word. He was also, as anyone knows who has read “Lolita,” a man of […]

Let’s take our country back!

Here’s the text of my speech against Islamophobia given at Portland State University Friday, Oct. 29: As the author of two novels about the Prophet Muhammad and his controversial bride A’isha bint Abi Bakr, I know something about hate. I know something about fear. Some people hate me because they think I’m an Islamophobe. Islamophobes […]

My Story: Finding Power Within

Dear Reader, Every writer, it’s said, has a single story to tell — and tells it over and over again. A’isha bint Abi Bakr, the most famous and influential woman in Islam, inspired me to write about her life in my novels “The Jewel of Medina” and “The Sword of Medina.” Now that I’m at […]

No laughing matter: “Index on Censorship” censors itself

Where are the heroes? Now that Index on Censorship has failed us, where in the UK and America can we turn for defense of this most precious of freedoms