Proud in Her Hijab

A Story of Family Strength, Empowerment, and Identity

Young Adult - Social Issues
38 Pages
Reviewed on 01/20/2022
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Zinet Kemal, an immigrant from Ethiopia, currently resides in Minnesota. She has been happily married for over 12 years and is a mother of four children.
Zinet earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and the Bachelor of Law (LLB). She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Cybersecurity from Georgia Tech University. She works for a Fortune 500 company as an Associate Cloud Security Engineer. Prior to that, she was a Senior Information Security Engineer for the State of Minnesota.

Zinet became inspired by her children to start writing children’s books. She saw a need for books to encourage young girls with hijabs to be proud of their hijabs, to embrace their own identity, and to recognize their beauty and uniqueness. She also hopes to create awareness for readers about the importance of appreciating diversity and inclusion. The book became an amazon #1 bestseller and the 2021 Distinguished Award Winner under Children's book category.

During the pandemic, Zinet noticed how her children were spending more time online gaming or for school. With that exposure she also saw two of her children’s gaming accounts hacked on more than two occasions. Their online experiences motivated her to write her 2nd children's book "Oh, No...Hacked Again!" a story to teach children the important message of online safety. Also, spark interest in young readers, to consider that cybersecurity as an exciting and meaningful career option when they grow up.

To find more work from the author please visit

    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

“We are all beautiful in our own unique ways.” Iman’s mother has often told her daughters to respect themselves and their inner beauty. It doesn’t matter what a person looks like or what they wear, everyone is, or at least has the potential to be, beautiful. Iman is hurt when sitting alone for lunch at her new school she overhears fellow students commenting on her hijab. They think she’s hiding something, although one girl does comment on how pretty the hijab is. Iman goes home troubled and deep in thought, but talking things over with her mother and her sister, she feels empowered and knows what to do the next day. She understands now that sometimes when people don’t know all the facts, they jump to the wrong conclusions. And she plans to set things straight.

Zinet Kemal's young people’s story, Proud in Her Hijab: A Story of Family Strength, Empowerment, and Identity, is a compassionate look at one girl’s journey into accepting who she is and that, yes, she is beautiful like everyone else. The story is both educational and inspirational especially for young girls to recognize their inner beauty and be proud of themselves. The plot follows Iman’s journey from hurt to empowerment as she returns to school intent on teaching her fellow students about her hijab and that she does have beautiful (and clean) hair underneath. The story is told in simple language so young readers can read along and it’s accompanied by colorful illustrations. The story will definitely inspire young readers to be confident in what they wear and in who they are – we are who we are for a reason and we shouldn’t have to cower to others’ opinions of us. Be yourself and be proud of who you are. It took courage for Iman to stand up to her classmates, but she did it with both pride and respect for them as well as herself. The book ends with a list of the important themes covered in the story, including respect, kindness, as well as the importance of family and friendships. Beautifully told.