The slide opened and I heard a gentle, kind voice: "What is your confession, my child?" I was stuffed. The Priest would declare me a heretic; my parents would call me a traitor The Priest asked me again: "What is your confession, my child?" "I'm Muslim." I whispered. Welcome to my world. I'm Amal Abdel-Hakim, a seventeen year-old Australian-Palestinian-Muslim still trying to come to grips with my various identity hyphens. It's hard enough being cool as a teenager when being one issue behind the latest Cosmo is enough to disqualify you from the in-group. Try wearing a veil on your head and practising the "bum's up" position at lunchtime and you know you're in for a tough time at school.
Winner of ABIA Australian Book of the Year for Older Children (8 to 14 Years) 2006.