Butterfly Wings

About the Book

A poignant tale about life, love and loss:

When Fatima is left alienated and alone after her divorce, she grapples with her new reality and struggles to find her new place in society. Yet she is forced on a journey to rediscover what is important to her; a journey that will teach her, not only about herself; but about others close to her, about the kindness of strangers, and about life itself.

Now Available at the following bookstores:

-  Al-Huda Bookstore-Mayfair, Johannesburg
- M.I. Nana- Oriental Plaza, Johannesburg
- Cii Stores- Lenasia 

Email zhassem1@yahoo.com / zhassem@hotmail.com to buy a copy directly from the author... OR

Contact the Publisher to order a copy: 
Email: asnoordeen@yahoo.com

Book Review | Butterfly Wings

This Book review is re-posted here. It was originally written by fellow blogger Fatima Haffejee, you can read the original here.

I have to say a huge Thank You to Fatima for this great review, I do feel that she was over generous, but hey, I’m not complaining, I’m just happy that people are enjoying reading this.


JazakAllah Khayr to Fatima and anyone else who has read the book!

By Fatima Haffejee

It is not often that writers get it right.

We strike a chord, play on empathy, create visual scenario’s and then some, but we sometimes question whether we’ve struck the perfect balance.

Recently I've taken to reading books by South African authors. Whilst it’s no secret that Jonathan Kellerman is one of my all time favourite writers and given a choice between mystery and romance, the former would be an uncontested preference, I refrain from limiting myself.

It would be so unfair to the literacy world that awaits us if we restricted ourselves to one such author or a specific genre.

Patriotism is all well and good but when it comes to feeding my soul I’m most certainly selective. So it’s refreshing to note that SA writers are comparatively equal in rank to international names and for thing reason amongst many others I’d shout out ‘proudly SA’ if need be.

In colloquial terms Butterfly Wings definitely ‘calls it.’

I am a compulsive person when it comes to certain aspects (read: when it suits me). I feel guilty to leave an open packet of gums half-eaten. It plagues me to such an extent that I don’t stop until I’ve eaten all the mummies and her babies.

Blame our parents for telling us that the mummy lump of food was crying for her baby lumps unless we settle the score by eating the rest of her family.

To ensure that they are reunited within the linings of our stomach.

This book was much like that packet of gums. It took me all of one afternoon to read because (and as a means of confession) I was so gripped by the story as it enfolded.

As a Muslim women living amidst societal norms that govern our being I found I was easily able to relate with Fatima’s loss of hope, her frantic attempts at redemption and her internalization of the happiness that is our own to discover.

Fatima, a 25 year old woman finds herself divorced after 6 years of marriage. She wallows in her misery, pushing herself deeper into a self contained hole when she discovers that people aren’t who they say they are (isn’t that always just the case).

Hassem encapsulates Fatima’s emotion after her divorce with such realistic appeal.

 There is no point in the book where I thought ‘there is no way this happens’. The love-hate relationship with her parents, the stigma that she faces as a result and the love that blossoms despite the cultural barrier in Indian society was so well placed that it doesn’t prove difficult to identify with the main character herself.

Honestly, I've known Zarina for some 6 years now and reading her book made me admire her to unthinkable capacity.

 I have read several other South African authors that have written on the topic of stereotypes in the Indian/Muslim society, the abuse that plagues us behind closed doors and the cultural norms that thwarts its women and labels it men but none of whom struck the perfect balance.

Zarina has condensed all this and more with  integrity and wisdom.

One day I’d like my own daughter to read this book.

So she too can be appreciative of the land that is ours and the amazing writers that have been borne of it.

Butterfly Wings retails for R150 and can be purchased from: Al Huda Bookstore in Fordsburg; The Cii Store in Trade route Mall (lenasia) and Jilbaab – The Ultimate Cover (Mayfair West) Cell: 0824470095 Bbm: 2969FE98.


  1. I had no idea you had a blog as well. Can't wait to read your book!!

  2. JazakAllah Khayr Fatima, I'm looking forward to having you review the book;-)

  3. A beautiful review that definitely makes me want to read your book Zarina. God gave you a gift and you are sharing it with the world. Be blessed always.

  4. Marie

    Thank you so much, as always I appreciate your positive comments. I am really thankful to have the chance to do what I love and have people appreciate it,Allah is indeed generous!

    You stay well and in peace

  5. An absolutely amazing read...it was very much an eye opener to me personally and May Allah make it easy for every women who is under going any sort of difficulty,After reading this book I realized that we all have trials in life and it only makes us stronger and if Fatima can overcome every trial that she faced so can we Insha'Allah...May Allah take you from strength to strength Aunty Zarina...

  6. Anonymous

    Thank you for your comment, Alhamdullillah, I am glad you enjoyed the book. Ameen to your duaas and yes, every single person has some sort of difficulty to face and this is part of our test and Inshaa-Allah it will help us to become closer to Allah Almighty.

    stay well and all the best