National Arab American Heritage Month

Celebrate National Arab American Heritage Month! Over three million people in the United States have ancestral connections to one or more of the 22 Arab countries of the world. Arab Americans have a rich history in the United States, going back all the way to 1527, when Mustafa Azemmouri, an enslaved Moroccan guide, arrived in Florida. Today, the majority of Arab Americans are native-born, continuing the legacy of cultural contributions like their forebears. 

This month serves to highlight “the history of Arab migration to America, geographic understanding of the Arab world, Arab American diversity in faith and language, interesting customs and traditions, issues affecting our community, and our many achievements in business, politics, education, and more,” according to Arab America Foundation 

Check out the fiction list below, which features Arab American writers and their experiences. These works are as vibrant, resonant and unique as the community the authors embody.  

You can sign up for a free library card here 

If you are new to our eResources, check out these tutorial videos on how to get started.     

If you’re looking for more book suggestions, we’re happy to recommend them to you! Use this Book Recommendation form to send us some information about what you like to read and we’ll curate a list just for you.    

If you have any additional questions, you can contact a librarian through Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. You can also call us at 412-622-3114 or email us at 


Alligator & Other Stories

Alzayat captures luminously the many ways of feeling displaced: as a Syrian, as an Arab, as an immigrant, as a woman. Using multiple voices from history in the form of diary entries, social media posts, and newspaper clippings, she tells both individual stories and a larger history of racial violence in the United States. You can also check out this title as an eBook or as eAudio on Hoopla.

Anatomy of a Disappearance

Nuri and his widowed father, Kamal, live in exile from an unnamed Arab country (that bears a striking resemblance to Matar’s native Libya). Years later, Nuri has been shuffled off to an English boarding school where he pines for his step-mother, Mona, and tries desperately to comprehend his father’s personal history which is made all the more impossible and necessary when, one wintry day, Kamal is abducted from the Geneva apartment of a woman neither Mona nor Nuri know. You can also check out this title as an eBook or as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

Bride of the Sea

With a baby on the way, two newlywed university students navigate a rocky marriage and lingering feelings of discontent. You can also check out this title as eAudio on Hoopla.

Home Is Not a Country

Feeling disconnected from her émigré parents and outcast by her suburban town, Nima grapples with the phantom of a life not chosen–the name her parents meant to give her at birth–Yasmeen. But that other name, that other girl, might be more real than Nima knows. You can also check out this title as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

The Other Americans

Late one spring night in California, Driss Guerraoui–father, husband, business owner, Moroccan immigrant–is hit and killed by a speeding car. The aftermath of his death brings together a diverse cast of characters in this family saga, murder mystery, and love story. You can also check out this title as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

A Pure Heart

Rose, an Egyptologist, immigrated to New York City, where she works in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, while her sister, Gameela, a devout Muslim, stayed in Cairo, where she is killed in the aftermath of Egypt’s revolution. When Rose returns to Egypt after the bombing, she sifts through Gameela’s things, and realizes that Gameela had secrets.

A Woman Is No Man

Eighteen-year-old Deya is meeting suitors in Brooklyn due to her grandparents’ insistence, despite her disinterest in marriage. History certainly repeats itself as Deya’s mother Isra had no choice in her marriage to Adam when she left Palestine as a teenager. While Deya was raised to believe her parents, Isra and Adam, died in a car accident, a secret note from a mysterious woman makes Deya question everything about her past, her community, and her identity. You can also check out this title as an eBook or eAudio on OverDrive/Libby, or as an eBook or eAudio on Hoopla.

The Wrong End of the Telescope

Mina Simpson, a Lebanese doctor, arrives at the infamous Moria refugee camp on Lesbos where she meets Sumaiya, a young mother who, unbeknownst to her family, is dying from cancer. Bonded together by Sumaiya’s secret, a deep connection sparks between the two women. You can also check out this title as an eBook on Hoopla.