by Maisha Samiha for muslimgirl.com
Excerpt from Review
"Oftentimes, a lot of the narratives that exist about queerness are those of White and Western perspectives. However, “Hijab Butch Blues” provides us with a narrative where religion, race, ethnicity, and culture play a deeper role in one’s identity and experience with queerness. The heart of this memoir is that it is about being queer, being Muslim, and how those two aspects of one’s identity both fit and collide."
Review by Bobuq Sayed from apogeejournal.org
Excerpt from Review:
"They name the different chapters of the book after surahs of the Quran [...] These are the moments of intertextuality that make Hijab Butch Blues a truly remarkable rupture in the literary fold. The teachings of the Quran here function to unravel their identity. Lamya shirks the expectation that they might embrace their queerness by way of abandoning their religion. Instead, it is through deep study of the Quran and engagement with the queer Muslim community in New York City that they finally discover a sense of spiritual belonging."
Review by Ashlee Green for NPR
Excerpts from the Review:
"They show readers how harrowing it is to navigate life in the U.S. in their "brown hijabi Muslim body," which is 'seen as scary, disempowered, both hypervisible and invisible at the same time.'"
"It's also a study guide on Islam, a handbook for abolitionists, and a queer manifesto. It inspires critical thinking, upholds activist self-care, and permits the defining of one's own queerness. Good vs. bad Muslim, straight vs. gay: That's all a trap. There are third options, too. By the end of it, readers will see queerness — theirs, others', and the concept --'for what it is: a miracle.'"
with Sabir Sultan for Pen America
Excerpt from the Interview:
"In the memoir you posit writing as a place of resistance where you can fight for your beliefs. What do you hope your book will do in the world? How can writers affect resistance movements?
I see writing as a form of resistance. My favorite encapsulation of this is Teju Cole’s tweet: “Writing as writing. Writing as rioting. Writing as righting. On the best days, all three.”
One of the undercurrents in my book is anger, which has been such a generative emotion for me in terms of fighting for justice. I draw on anger to write, to organize, and to protest. I hope this book will give people permission to use anger in similar ways: to voice rage, to build community and to fight for a better world for all of us."
with Megan Labrise for Kirkus Reviews
Excerpts from the Interview:
[About choosing a Memoir title] "But for me, it was absolutely 100% inspired by Stone Butch Blues, and I think the book is in conversation with that book and with Leslie Feinberg. I thought a lot about queer ancestors, people who paved the way for us not just to write books, but to exist. Stone Butch Blues is one of my favorite books, so beautiful and so timely still. It’s been decades since it was written, and it still feels so intersectional—even before that word was a thing. There are multiple identities at play, multiple solidarities in play, and so much hope and beauty and freedom in that book. I wanted to write a book that felt like it explored identities in similar ways."
Essays by Lamya H
"Not Your Tragic Queer Muslim Story" published 2014 in Black Girl Dangerous
"A Personal History of Islamophobia in America" published 2016 in Vox
"A Fragile Dance: Queer Brown Futures (Or Lack Thereof)" published 2015 in Autostraddle