Zarqa Nawaz has always straddled two cultures. She’s just as likely to be agonizing over which sparkly earrings will “pimp out” her hijab as to be flirting with the Walmart meat manager in a futile attempt to secure halal chicken the day before Eid. “Little Mosque on the Prairie” brought Zarqa’s own laugh-out-loud take on her everyday culture clash to viewers around the world. And now, in Laughing All the Way to the Mosque, she tells the sometimes absurd, sometimes challenging, always funny stories of being Zarqa in a western society. From explaining to the plumber why the toilet must be within sitting arm’s reach of the water tap (hint: it involves a watering can and a Muslim obsession with cleanliness “down there”) to urging the electrician to place an eye-height electrical socket for her father-in-law’s epilepsy-inducing light-up picture of the Kaaba, Zarqa paints a hilarious portrait of growing up in a household where, according to her father, the Quran says it’s okay to eat at McDonald’s—but only if you order the McFish.
ZARQA NAWAZ created Little Mosque on the Prairie. Premiering on the CBC in 2007, it ran for six seasons, was watched in over sixty countries and landed Nawaz in the public eye. When not writing, producing or directing for the show, she has spent much of the past six years writing comedy pilots for ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX, and touring the world as a sought-after public speaker. She has been interviewed or profiled by CNN, the BBC, The New York Times and Aljazeera. A contributor to CBC's DNTO, Zarqa Nawaz lives in Regina with her loving but long-suffering family.