Skip to Main Content

The Colour of God

Published by Oneworld Publications
Distributed by Simon & Schuster
See More Retailers

A memoir of a fundamentalist Muslim childhood and of redefining faith, belonging and family in adulthood

‘Engrossing.’ Monica Ali

‘Heartbreaking and really funny.’ Ross Gay

‘This book fell into my heart.’ Sabrina Mahfouz

‘The kind of authentic voice that is rarely heard.’ Saima Mir

This is the story of a child raised in Canada by parents who embraced a puritanical version of Islam to shield them from racism. The author explores the joys and sorrows of growing up in a fundamentalist Muslim household, wedding grand historical narratives of colonialism and migration to the small intimate heartbreaks of modern life. In revisiting the beliefs and ideals she was raised with, Chaudhry invites us to reimagine our ideas of self and family, state and citizenship, love and loss.

The Colour of God is an engrossing read, not because it tells the story of one woman’s journey from “subjugation” within a puritanical sect of Islam to finding ‘liberation’ by taking off her veil, but because it refuses and interrogates these facile labels. Chaudhry is brilliant at dissecting how fundamentalism took root in her family, and she’s equally good at holding up a mirror to the culture that tends to dehumanise those who don’t conform to its norms.’

– Monica Ali, author of Brick Lane

‘This book fell into my heart, bringing real life, real love, pain and grief… Chaudhry writes beautifully.’

– Sabrina Mahfouz

The Colour of God offers us a sustained exploration of home and belief and the tendrils between the two…a beautiful and necessary book that remarkably, wonderfully, makes our world larger and smaller at once.’

– Ross Gay, bestselling author of The Book of Delights

‘The kind of authentic voice that is rarely heard nowadays. Her experiences of family and the patriarchal interpretations of Islam, pushed upon women of South Asian heritage, resonated with me on so many levels.’

– Saima Mir, author of The Khan

The Colour of God is not a Huntington-esque, us vs them book, but a mirror showing us who we are. I found myself in every page…The author’s strength is to bring the profound into the mundane. A very alluring read.’

– Muslim News

‘An extraordinary memoir, which uses the author’s wounds to help us to better understand the poetry of her ordinary life. It provides a beautiful glimpse of some of the realities of Muslim life at the beginning of the 21st century.’

– Amir Hussain, Chair and Professor of Theological Studies, Loyola Marymount University

‘These lovingly curated memories take us through journeys of migration, displacement, loss, and resilience. Seeded with perceptive insights into colonial legacies, racism, resistance, gender, fundamentalism and faith, patriarchy and power, Chaudhry presents us with a memoir that is at once compelling and illuminating.’

– Zayn Kassam, Professor of Religious Studies, Pomona College

‘Ayesha Chaudhry lifts the veil off an age-old trope about Muslim womanhood by diving deep and surfacing through its pain, love, joy and complexity. This memoir offers such profound candor that it challenges this trope by invoking depth of truth in its unfolding.’

– Amina Wadud

'An exquisite, engrossing, and very moving book.'

– New York Journal of Books