“A curious, often amusing travelogue of [Sardar’s] quest for understanding and the Muslims he has encountered along his journeys.”—Publishers Weekly
Ziauddin Sardar, one of the foremost Muslim intellectuals in Britain, learned the Koran at his mother’s knee in Pakistan. As a young student in London he set out to grasp the meaning of his religion, and, hopefully, to find “paradise,” his quest leading him throughout the Muslim world, from Iran to China to Turkey. Along the way he accepts that he may never reach paradise—but it’s the journey that’s important. At a time when the view of Islam in the West is so often distorted and simplistic, Desperately Seeking Paradise—self-mocking, frank and passionate—is essential reading.
“Intoxicating . . . upon finishing the book, I turned back and started reading it all over again.”—Kamila Shamise, New Statesman
“At once and earnest and humorous, light-hearted and profound, this is a book that displays a sustained capacity for self-questioning of a kind that has few parallels in the liberal West.”—The Independent
“This challenging book not only acts as a guide for Muslims but provides insight and clarification for those outside the Islamic faith.”—Financial Times
“The only funny book I’ve read about Islam.”—Mail on Sunday