Synopses & Reviews
War on Error brings together the stories of twelve young people, all vastly different but all American, and all Muslim. Their approaches to religion couldnt be more diverse: from a rapper of Korean and Egyptian descent to a bisexual Sudanese American to a converted white woman from Colorado living in Cairo and wearing the hijab. These individuals, whether they were born to the religion or came to it on their own, have made their own decisions about how observant theyll be, whether or not to fast, how often to pray, and what to wear. Though each story is unique, each is also seen through the searching eyes of Melody Moezzi, herself an American Muslim of Iranian descent. She finds that the people she interviews are horrified that, in a post-9/11 world, they have seen their religion come to be represented, in the minds of many Americans, by terrorism. These thoughtful and articulate individuals represent the truth about the faith and its adherents who are drawn to the logic, compassion, and tolerance they find in Muslim teachings. Moezzi, ever comfortable with contradiction and nuance, is a likable narrator whose underlying assumption that faith is greater than dogma” is strengthened as she learns more about her religion and faces her own biases and blind spots. This fresh new voice, combined with the perceptions and experiences of her fellow American Muslims, make for a read that is both illuminating and enjoyable.
"Moezzi, an American-raised lawyer of Iranian descent, proposes to tell the stories of young American Muslims, of which she is one. She notes the plight of being a 'Child of Fresh off the Boat' (or COFOB), including being mistaken frequently as Hispanic, and feeling caught between solidarity with America over 9/11 but critical of American foreign policy choices although she criticizes the Muslim community for ignorance and severe gender segregation, among other things. Despite its promising subject matter, however, the book has an unimaginative format of one interview per chapter, with no larger framework or unifying theme. Most interview subjects are Moezzi's own friends, some of whom Moezzi even quotes as praising her. Some readers, particularly Muslims, may be offended by an incident in which the author smokes marijuana with an interview subject, as well as other scenes in which she and her friends present themselves as self-indulgent. Although it is engaging and well written, the book lacks academic rigor and comes across as merely anecdotal. The title is never really explained, and Moezzi's conclusion that American Muslims will lead the next Islamic Renaissance though an appealing thought, is underdeveloped." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Engaging and well-written." Publisher's Weekly "A thoughtful and moving effort to come to terms with being an American Muslim from a positive and proactive perspective.” From the foreword "These voices should be heard and these stories must be told.” Suzanne Blum, coauthor of Translating Culture: A Rhetoric for Ethnographic Writing in the Composition Classroom
About the Author
Melody Moezzi is a recent graduate of the Emory University School of Law and Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, and she is the founder of InshaAllah, an Atlanta-based group devoted to peace, noncompulsion in any faith, and the recognition of equality across race, gender, and sexuality.