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These Impossible Things

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781398705791

Price: £10.99

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‘Captures the fierceness of female friendship’ BETH O’LEARY | ‘The essential book on sisterhood’ NIKITA GILL
Shortlisted for the Diverse Book Awards 2023

Three women. One life-changing friendship. One chance to stop it all falling apart . . .

Jenna, Kees and Malak have been friends for years: the three of them together against the world. But when one night changes everything, they’re left adrift from one another as their lives take different paths.

Encountering new milestones and heartbreaks without each other’s support feels increasingly difficult–in the wake of heartbreaks, marriages, new careers and new beginnings, they need each other more than ever. Will they be able to forgive each other in time?

These Impossible Things tells the story of three British Muslim women reconciling love, loss, womanhood, faith and how we navigate the bumps in life that can feel impossible to overcome.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘Absolutely loved it and couldn’t bear to put it down!’

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘This book has left me speechless

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘A cross-cultural celebration of friendship, without being saccharine and clichéd’

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ ‘I genuinely do not know what I will read next because I wonder what else might make me feel as seen and understood as these pages


A beautifully written, thought-provoking book from a talented & feminist author.
Deborah Frances-White
A beautiful tale of friendship between three women whose lives force them apart & fate and love drive back together. Funny, relatable, gorgeous.
Sareeta Domingo, author of Who's Loving You
I devoured this book in three days, and was bereft when it ended because I didn't want the three women that Salma has written into life so beautifully, to leave. I have known Muslim women like this my entire life, but I have never seen them written and depicted in the way they truly are - beautiful, multi-faceted, flawed, figuring life out. These Impossible Things is such an important part of the storytelling around love, dating, career, identity - and I know it will resonate and make so many women feel seen. Lyrical in places, precise and realistic in others - how wonderful it was to see the type of women I know, preserved in words forever.
Poorna Bell, author of Stronger
Salacious, incisive, and unapologetically Muslim, Salma El-Wardany's bold and brilliant story doesn't shy away from the taboo subjects of religion and sex. These Impossible Things shows that Muslim women are multifaceted and complex despite the dearth of representation we are allowed.
Blair Imani
It is hard to put into words what this book did for me. How many times I had to walk away from it because of how close to the bone it was and how viscerally I wanted to reach back in time and give it to my younger self. This book would have saved me when I needed it most. It took me years to figure out some of the truths that Salma has contained in this story: this beautiful epic thing that is literally a gift to all Muslim women and all Arab girls. Salma is the voice we didn't know we needed but should never have had to live without.
Amy Mowafi
I can't remember the last time a book consumed me like this. I truly, truly loved it. It's so beautifully written, full of warmth and love and insight; Malak, Kees and Jenna stole into my heart and stayed there. This novel captures the fierceness of female friendship better than anything I've ever read. It is a book I know I will still be thinking about for many years to come.
Beth O'Leary, author of The Flatshare
THESE IMPOSSIBLE THINGS is an addictive portrait of three Muslim friends moving through a pivotal time in womanhood, caught between expectation and possibility, hungry to earn wisdom of their own. Salma El-Wardany deftly reveals searing and poignant truths about the female experience, ones so rarely confronted in fiction. What a gift to be inside this author's mind through the pages of her beautiful and memorable writing.
Ashley Audrain, author of The Push
This is the essential book on sisterhood that I needed to read. Beautifully written and gorgeous, Salma El-Wardany is a brilliant writer and this is a story I will never forget.
Nikita Gill, author of Fierce Fairytales
Moving, telling, glorious; girlhood giving way to something urgent and beginning. This is a bracing, tender exploration of friendship, family and faith and their gaping complications. Irresistible.
Yrsa Daley-Ward
Lovers of Salma's poetry will recognise her evocative voice in this heartwrenching prose, a compelling story of three women losing themselves in life's transitions, then finding themselves, with each other. El-Wardany has written a love letter to friendship of women, and its power to conquer all. A powerful, poignant tale of womanhood and friendship.
Yassmin Abdel-Magied, author of Talking About a Revolution
A wonderful novel about family bonds, sisterhood, and home truths, that is moving and fragile and so readable. Well drawn characters, sparkling prose and excellent drama make for an exciting debut.
Nikesh Shukla
A beautiful, funny and heartbreaking ode to friendship and love, I devoured it!
Morgan Lloyd Malcolm