“Not an ordinary book on religion! Sandcastles & Snowmen is a compelling book for anyone curious about Islam in a modern context. The story is told through the eyes of an unusual woman, eager to diminish the gap between people of different faiths and cultures, even after 9/11 and the Prophet Muhammad cartoons turned her world upside down. This is her story, leaving behind a jet-setting life to search for spirituality and reconnect with her faith in a new, global context. From Cairo, to Jeddah, to Scandinavia, to the US and back, Sahar El-Nadi shares her views as a Muslim global citizen on world issues touching all of us: politics, gender, faith, diversity, ethical business and much more, in a personal and easy to follow style that will leave you well informed and deeply inspired.”
Agneta Nordin, Swedish Journalist & Radio Producer
“Sahar El-Nadi tells the story of her journey of rediscovering her Islamic spiritually in a post 9/11 world. Though it is a very personal journey, it echoes much of what many of us were facing. The steps she took and the soul searching she began into the depths of what Islam truly means resonate deeply with the psyche of the modern Muslim.”
Muna AbuSulayman, UNDP Saudi Goodwill Ambassador & TV Host
“In her book, Sandcastles & Snowmen, Sahar El-Nadi inspires us to learn more about modern Islam in her very own and personal way. When listening to Sahar giving her much appreciated lectures to us living in a “land of snowmen”, the audience experience the same kind of very engaging performance.”
Lars Harrysson, CEO Talarforum, Sweden
"In her book, Sandcastles & Snowmen, Sahar El-Nadi shows how a search for spirituality could be the catalyst that transforms a social butterfly into a revolutionary."
Sadaf Syed, Photographer, Activist, Author of iCOVER
"Sandcastles & Snowmen is an example of what those of us in the West who have an intimate knowledge of the Muslim world have been looking for: a global, nuanced and rich testimony to the living experience of being an intelligent, free, and believing Muslim. Sahar El-Nadi's voice and choice of topics, challenges the typical dichotomies by which we judge Arabs and Muslims and the relationship between faith and emotional and intellectual make up. Her purpose is more human and universal than to just pontificate or analyze the Middle East to change your mind; by writing this book in a somewhat 'self-help' style, she humanizes Islam without explicitly trying to do so, and she focuses on its spiritual import, rather than its political "otherness." This is not just an intellectual attempt to stifle the proliferation of shallow stereotypes, this book actually serves to liberate minds from irrational fears, inculcated by those who prefer to lobby for war rather than health care and education."
Laith Saud, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies,
DePaul University, Chicago
“Sandcastles & Snowmen is a fascinating tale of self discovery blended with real world facts about Islam and Muslims.”
Souheila Al-Jadda, Peabody award-winning journalist
“One of the most courageous interpretations of modern Islam from a leading voice of peace and coexistence. A brave woman and a thinker seeing Islam from a female leader's worldwide perspective and leaving you with a lot to think about after you put this book down. Sandcastles & Snowmen is one step for womankind and ten steps for integration!”
Monia Benbouzid, Vice Chairman, Stockholm Business Region
Ambassador for female entrepreneurs in Sweden
"While taking the reader on a beautiful journey to discover the self and the world, Sahar El-Nadi tells her personal story of life, faith, and triumph. Fasten your seatbelt and get ready to explore the streets of Cairo, the traditions of Japan, the media of America, and the dining table of the King of Sweden, as seen by a modern Muslim woman. In plain simple English, Sahar demystifies Islam and Muslims, and eloquently expresses their struggles and contributions, both historically and in today's world. You won't be able to put this book down until the last page. I've been waiting for a book like this for a long time."
Hesham El-Meligy, Interfaith leader, co-founder, Muslims For Liberty, New York
"There is simply nothing more beautiful than replacing one negative thought with a positive idea; a stereotypical view with facts; or a condescending attitude with friendly curiosity. In this book, the inspiring role model Sahar El-Nadi manages to do all that, simply by sharing her spiritual intelligence with the readers! Thank you for this very important contribution to the world."
Trine Grönlund, CEO, GoSlowWorld.com
"There is a cartoon I remember showing two men, the first one claiming: "It’s difficult to be human" and the second man replying: "But try anyway!" Sahar El-Nadi tries. Challenge yourself! Get this book about her personal journey from a glamorous life in satin to being a global cross-cultural personality. Read it! Chances are you’ll read right through to the end, then look up and shout: Eureka!"
Vagn Olsen, Danish Television Journalist
"Sahar El-Nadi is a thought leader in a new generation of global citizens who embrace modernity and timeless values, tolerance and truth, cooperation and conviction. Her voice, authentic and insightful, opens a window into a world too often caricatured and stereotyped, and sheds new light on what it means to be a Muslim woman in the 21st Century."
Dalia Mogahed, Author and Leadership Advisor
“If you want to know how strong Muslim women are using their faith to challenge misperceptions and engage the world in a global dialogue, then read this book!”
Lobna "Luby" Ismail, President, ConnectingCultures,
“A fascinating and engaging read. Sahar El-Nadi creatively combines her spiritual journey with an accessible and insightful introduction to Islam.”
Professor John L Esposito
President, American Academy of Religion
Founding Director, Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding,
Georgetown University, Washington D.C.