For as long as I can remember, this enchanting tale has been a part of my life. My late mother used to weave this story for me as I lay in her room, her fingers gently playing with my hair. These moments have crystallized in my memory, becoming as vivid as scenes from a movie that I have replayed for over 45 years.
While I’ve shared this story with my older children, it was my daughter Aaliyah’s profound emotional connection to the tale that inspired me to finally put pen to paper. I teamed up with Rufayda, a gifted artist and illustrator, to bring the vivid images that have long resided in my imagination to life.
As a tribute to my love for my youngest children, Aaliyah and Faisal, I have named the story’s protagonists after them. My hope is that this tale will not only captivate readers and listeners but will also, God willing, be adapted into various forms of entertainment, including film and video games.
I extend my deepest gratitude to my wife and my children, Dalia, Khalid, Abdulaziz, and Abdulmalik, for their unceasing encouragement. They have been my rock in bringing this cherished dream to fruition.