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Photo taken by Marium Mehdi

Maleeha Siddiqui is an American writer of Pakistani descent who loves to tell unapologetically Muslim stories for all ages. By day, Maleeha works as a regulatory affairs professional in the biotech industry. She grew up and continues to reside with her family in Virginia. When she’s not working, reading, or writing, she likes to try new food and snuggle cats. Barakah Beats (Scholastic 2021) is her debut novel.

Follow her on Instagram!

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1) I was born in Karachi, Pakistan, and immigrated to the U.S. when I was two years old.

2) I am the eldest of 5 siblings and believe eldest children should receive lifetime pensions.

3) I have an Associate of Science (2013), a B.S. in Biology with a concentration in Biotechnology (2015), and an M.S. in Biotechnology with a specialization in Biotechnology Regulatory Affairs (2020).

4) Besides pizza and Pakistani food, my favorite cuisines are Mexican and Thai. I also eat way too much Halal Guys.

5) I used to hate reading. That all changed when I started attending the Scholastic Book Fair in 5th grade.

6) Some of my favorite Middle Grade books include Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan, Refugee by Alan Gratz, Front Desk by Kelly Yang, Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga, Maybe He Just Likes You by Barbara Dee, the Once Upon an Eid anthology edited by Aisha Saeed and S. K. Ali, Stand Up, Yumi Chung! by Jessica Kim, The Girl and the Ghost by Hanna Alkaf, Friend Me by Sheila M. Averbuch, and Hide and Seekerby Daka Hermon.

7) No, I did not join a boy band in middle school.

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