The Azurean Trilogy (Books 1 & 2) is a spiritual science fiction novel written by Fatimah A.M. Ibrahim. Sister Fatimah is a convert to Islam who has had a passion for writing since childhood and is also the author of the children’s book, I Love My Hijab. The Azurean Trilogy, Sister Fatimah’s first novel, effectively weaves social commentary, heart-pounding action and a refreshing communal spirituality into a tapestry of captivating reading that leaves you yearning for the next installment of the series. Ms. Ibrahim brings her characters to life with clever, insightful dialogue that at times makes you laugh and at other times makes you think and reflect upon the deeper meanings behind what it means to have faith and to exist. The story unfolds with a walk back in time to an earth that is dying from over-population, the depletion of natural resources and the pollution of its soil and seas. Sister Fatimah A.M. Ibrahim uses inspirational scriptures and fragments of history combined with a warm, optimistic narrative to take the reader on a journey to a world where the faithful are empowered with gifts that allow them to overcome the evils that they face.
The book begins with the transportation of the human race to a planet capable of supporting human life that was discovered in another galaxy. The planet is named Mercia and the main character, Yaya, has come of age and is about to take the necessary steps into adulthood when conflict reaches her village in Deloria. Mercia has fallen victim to the vices of greed and cruelty at the hands of Mercia’s ruling class, the Houdakin, and Yaya’s Essentia is beset by violent fear tactics meant to intimidate the masses for maintaining the status quo.
Youths from Deloria of various faiths and ethnicities embark upon a quest in the pursuit of justice. One excerpt where the main character begins to describe some of what she and the others are feeling appears on page 87 and reads:
We had access to new skills, and that was the lovely part. It gave me comfort that our mission was ordained. Never before had I been filled with such a sense of purpose. A fullness in the breast at being inspired with a mission. I knew what the leaders of the past must have felt. An anger at seeing people suffer. A need to be part of some kind of change. A fear that your faith might falter in the face of fear. Those were the complications.
In addition, Sister Fatimah includes actual personalities and occurrences from world history to bring social issues to light when juxtaposing the principals of the ruling class, the Houdakin, and the principals of the Delorians and the other peoples of Mercia that are being oppressed. Interesting historical facts are woven into the story line and invite the reader to re-think his or her reactions to challenges faced in life. On page 100, the story of Henrietta Lacks, an African-American woman who was the unwitting source of medical research which led to the creation of the first known human immortal cell line known as the HeLa cell line is mentioned:
Henrietta ended up dying from cervical cancer, but her cells lived on and were used to develop at least 11,000 tests, drugs, treatments or vaccines that benefited humans all across Planet Earth. Her cells were considered to be immortal. The tragedy of it all had been that neither she nor her family received any type of compensation for something that had made such a profound effect on medical history. Her cells had helped millions, and others were able to profit from it, yet her surviving family was unable to afford health insurance.
Another unique aspect of the Azurean Trilogy is how Sister Fatimah uses scriptures from the Holy Quran and the Holy Bible to introduce each chapter of the book. She includes ayat from the Holy Qur'an, Surah 2, Ayah 42-46:
"And cover not Truth with falsehood, nor conceal the Truth when ye know (what it is). And be steadfast in prayer; practice regular charity; and bow down your heads with those who bow down (in worship). Do ye enjoin right conduct on the people, and forget (to practice it) yourselves, and yet ye study the Scripture: Will ye not understand? Nay, seek (Allah's) help with patient perseverance and prayer; It is indeed hard, except to those who bring a lowly spirit,- Who bear in mind the certainty that they are to meet their Lord, and that they are to return to Him.”