Book of the week: Leap of Faith
While Queen Noor’s autobiography, Leap of Faith: Memoirs of an Unexpected Life, is not the most recent book on the Middle East, involving the politics and events of that area, the perspective she writes from remains incredibly unique. Queen Noor insightfully combines her native American background with her new found love and respect for Jordan and the Middle East as a whole. With a Syrian father, Queen Noor was familiar with the culture growing up and on her first visits to the region she fell in love with the culture and people. After graduating from Princeton, Queen Noor took a job in Tehran before moving to Jordan where she would meet her future husband, King Hussein of Jordan.
Her memoirs display a great amount of respect for her new home and she mixes her life events with short history passages that attempt to explain the current situation. Her understanding that such history has an incredibly large impact on the present and future is what makes the book even more engaging as it seems to be constantly relevant. Her experiences as Queen of Jordan for two decades allowed her to do a great amount of good in the country, and her want to help the people of the country is incredibly evident. Moreover, in a world and time which predominantly demonizes Muslim countries, it is incredibly important that such a narrative displaying the positive aspects of the region and religion is available. Especially remarkable is that Queen Noor shows that one can be raised in America yet have an appreciation and love for Islam, the Middle East and still America. All of these aspects combined make this a very interesting as well as important read.