When the Doorbell Rang

Written by: Taghreed Najjar, Illustrated by: Reem Askari,


On the first day of Ramadan after Iftar the electricity is suddenly cut off and in the darkness Nagham’s family hear the sound of a drum from afar followed by knocking on the door. Who can it be?

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Parent/Teacher Guide

Social and family customs and rituals are an important part in a child’s life. The month of Ramadan is especially important because during the holy month of Ramadan the life of a child is totally turned upside down. Sometimes parents assume that the child knows what Ramadan is all about and do not bother to explain the idea and values behind the month. A book about Ramadan is a great way to introduce and prepare children for the coming occasion. It gives parents and teachers the chance to talk about the rituals and values of the month such as; fasting, giving to the poor, family getting together, breaking the fast and waking up early morning to prepare for the fast. All these important aspects are woven in the story narrative in a mixture of reality, fantasy, suspense and humor. The story starts when Nagham invites her friend Reham to help her make the Ramadan lanterns with the family. Reham reminds her friend that she had helped her decorate the Christmas tree. The child is indirectly encouraged to celebrate his/her own rituals and feasts while respecting the rituals of others.

Additional information
ISBN 9789957040451
Binding Soft Cover
Pages 32
Age Range
Year of Publication 2006
Weight 0.172 kg
Dimensions 21 × 5 × 24 cm

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About the Author: Taghreed Najjar

Taghreed Najjar is a pioneer of modern children's literature in Jordan. A graduate of the American University of Beirut,Taghreed started her career as a teacher before becoming a full time writer of picture books and young adult novels. Her YA novels have been celebrated widely by her readers and various schools in the region have adopted them as part of their curriculum. A number of her books have won awards while others have been translated into foreign languages like English, Swedish, Turkish, French and Chinese.  
One of her most critically acclaimed works is a series of ten picture books revolving around six-year old Jude and her family and friends.'The Halazone Series', deals with everyday childhood issues which are treated with humor and deftness by the author. One of Taghreed’s pet projects was collecting old Arabic children rhymes and publishing them in book and digital form to make them accessible to the modern child and family of today. She published two collections of rhymes, the latest entitled 'Musical Tickles' was selected by the National Centre for Children's Literature (a service of the French National Library) as one of the best publications in the Arab World in 2012/2013.

Taghreed is a member of the Jordanian Writer’s Association and takes part in international and regional conferences and workshops that deal with children literature.

About the Illustrator: Reem Askari

When I was a kid I used to love drawing. My hair was curly so I used to think I wasn’t pretty. It took me a long time to finish the chores my mom asked me to do, so I thought I wasn’t good at anything, but everyone believed in my drawing abilities. I loved creating beautiful shapes from my surroundings. I even made hand-made gifts to my friends, and enjoyed watching their astonishment at my abilities. In addition to my drawing hobby, I enjoyed acting and taking on different characters. We used to act out many stories that we wrote ourselves in the school playground. My mom says I used to recite many of the events as if they were true, don’t tell my mom that I still think they are real. When I grew up I studied Fine Arts and worked in animation. Later I freed myself to illustrate stories for children. Drawing is really fun, don’t believe anyone that says you can't draw.