Just One: A Journey of Perseverance and Conviction

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Product Details

Global Bookshelves International, LLC
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.0 X 0.41 inches | 0.59 pounds

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About the Author

Dr. Nour Akhras is a board-certified pediatric infectious diseases physician who has been working at a free-standing Women and Children's Hospital in the suburbs of Chicago for the last decade. Dr. Akhras was trained in pediatrics at the University of Illinois Chicago Medical Center and completed her fellowship at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She holds a BA in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Chicago and received her medical degree from Rush Medical College. Dr. Akhras was trained in traditional Islamic sciences in Damascus, Syria, and has her ijaza in tajwid through the late Shaykh Hasan al-Kurdi. She has contributed a chapter on Islamic bioethics to a book published by Yale University entitled What's the Point? Clinical Reflections on Care that Seems Futile. She has served on the board of IMAN (Inner City Muslim Action Network). This grassroots organization fosters transformational change in urban communities where she co-chaired IMAN's youth group, Pillars, for many years. She has also participated in multiple medical missions to support Syrian refugees in Hatay, Turkey, Thessaloniki, Greece, and displaced war victims in Ma'rib, Yemen. She has served on the boards of MedGlobal and the Syrian American Medical Society Midwest chapter. She has advocated for the rights of refugees by authoring op-eds in newspapers like USA Today and the Chicago Sun-Times. She has led speaking engagements, including presenting at Washington DC's National Press Club, discussing the effects of Syrian war violence on the lives of Syrian women. She loves to travel, read, and swim in her free time. She takes bike rides and walks with her family and supports her children, who play basketball games. One may also find her attending gatherings with her sister, cousins, and high school friends.


"Just One masterfully blends the painful and the humorous with the personal and the political - Dr. Akhras takes us inside what it is like to be Muslim and a doctor in a post-9/11 world. We feel her humiliation as she fends off baseless questions from Customs agents and the FBI, starting when she was just 26 and a 'nerdy, skinny, extremely shy pediatric resident.' The book is a portrait of a woman who has somehow balanced family, medicine, altruism, religion, and discrimination as she goes above and beyond to treat children suffering from the fallout of war around the world. Her extreme empathy comes across as she struggles to decide whether to fly into war zones to treat patients - while leaving behind her own children. I, for one, am blown away by what Dr. Akhras is willing to do to help her fellow humans. What makes this book so compelling is the author's intricate storytelling, which is balanced with an eye for the absurd and, first and foremost, a thread of great compassion that is woven throughout."

Lauren Wolfe, Journalist

"The writing was flawless, and the story was airtight, focused, and very emotional. This is one of the most humane and honest stories I've read so far.

It is also a beautiful inside story of a Muslim American's life, her struggles as a Muslim in an Islamophobic climate, as a mom who is providing humanitarian aid in war-torn countries, and also the human story of what an average Muslim American's life is like making contributions in her medical profession and in modern science."

Warda Nawaz, Freelance Medical Writer and Editor

"The story starts with a monologue of the writer reminiscing about how her 2017 medical mission to Yemen came to fruition with one text message. That opening sentence, 'Perhaps, we could cross the Red Sea by boat to make it to Yemen...' is what pulls you through and compels you to keep reading. The book introduces you to an excitement that remains constant till the end. You want to know more, you want to know what's next, and you keep wondering, why 'Just One'? ...until you reach the last chapter, and it all makes sense.

Dr. Nour possesses a brilliant way of writing and engaging the readers. Another thing that draws you into the book is how you can feel her courage as well as vulnerability, which helps to connect on a personal level.

Her storytelling prowess is evident in her simple conversational tone and the clarity with which she introduces the different chapters of her life, her missions in various countries around the world, and the stories of people she met throughout the journey. You, as a reader, embark on the same journey as if you were also there.

Fantastically engaging and superbly enticing!"

Humayera Kabir Hana, Clinical Pharmacist and Editor