NOVEL REVIEW: Imamku Lelaki Pendosa by Umie Nadzimah





Eiyo dearies,

I am back with a new post and another novel review. For today's post, I would like to share with you guys my review of a novel I just finished reading last weekend. The novel is titled - Imamku Lelaki Pendosa, and it is written by Umie Nadzimah. So let's get started with the review. We shall begin with the author's profile...


ABOUT UMIE NADZIMAH

Me (right) with the author, Umie Nadzimah during her creative writing workshop at Puchong early this year.


Umie Nadzimah is one of Malaysia's A-Lister novelists. Most of her novels are bestsellers and have been adapted into movies and television dramas. As a novelist, Umie Nadzimah has won many creative writing awards. Besides writing novels, Umie Nadzimah also writes television drama scripts and train young writers to become a novelist- one of them is me ^_^. Yep, Umie Nadzimah is one of my creative writing mentors besides Sri Diah. As a student and apprentice of Umie Nadzimah, I describe her as friendly, approachable, cheerful, knowledgeable, creative, and open-minded. I am grateful to have her as one of my mentors. Insya'Allah I will be a successful writer like Umie Nadzimah one day. Aamiin. Some of Umie Nadzimah's novels are Jangan Janggu Jodohku, Aku Pilih Bahagia, Lelaki Kiriman Tuhan, Si Baju Kurung Kasut Canvas, and many more.


ABOUT IMAMKU LELAKI PENDOSA



Imamku Lelaki Pendosa (ILP) is Umie Nadzimah's 15th novel. ILP tells the story of a beautiful and kind-hearted young woman named Cahaya Malaika. Cahaya Malaika had a great life. She had a good career as a pharmacist, loving parents and sisters, and a boyfriend named Nik Safri. 

The story begins with Cahaya getting engaged to Nik Safri. Everyone was happy with Cahaya and Nik Safri's engagement, except her mother, Mrs. Wahidah. Mrs. Wahidah actually had a dark past and secret that only her husband, Mr. Firdaus knew. 

After Cahaya and Nik Safri's engagement ceremony, Mr. Firdaus told Cahaya the truth about her. To Cahaya's surprise, she was not Mr. Firdaus's biological daughter like she thought she was all this while. Before Cahaya was born, Mrs. Wahidah cheated on Mr. Firdaus. Mrs. Wahidah had an affair with her own boss, Datuk Sri Afnan. She later got pregnant with Cahaya. Yep, Cahaya was a love-child.

Cahaya told her fiance about her background. Nik Safri and his family freaked out. Nik Safri's mother, Mrs. Suriati broke their engagement. Nik Safri and his family felt disgusted. Nik Safri and his family discriminated poor Cahaya. Woah.....how cruel. It's not Cahaya's fault.

A few months later, Cahaya met an aristocrat woman named Datin Junaidah. Datin Junaidah was Mr. Firdaus's ex-schoolmate. Datin Junaidah liked Cahaya. To Datin Junaidah, Cahaya was very beautiful. Datin Junaidah wanted Cahaya to be her daughter in law. 

Datin Junaidah later introduced Cahaya to her son, Dean Ilyas (the male protagonist). Dean was an almost perfect guy. He was handsome, had a good career, intelligent, smart, polite, a gentlemen, and also a good cook. Cahaya and Dean got married.

During their honeymoon in Bali, Cahaya noticed something strange about Dean. Dean did not touch Cahaya at all. It's like he doesn't have any sexual interest in his beautiful-gorgeous wife. At first, Cahaya thought Dean had a secret lover behind her back. Yes, Dean indeed had a secret lover. But his lover was not a woman. Dean's secret lover was a man just like him. Yes, Dean Ilyas was gay...

So what will Cahaya Malaika do? Will she accept Dean Ilyas for who he is?


MY OVERALL REVIEW

First of all, I like Cahaya Malaika's character. Cahaya is the kind of woman I always want to be. She is not just beautiful. But she is also kind-hearted, sincere, patient, see good things in every situation, and always grateful. Plus, she is always there for the man (Dean Ilyas) that she loves. Cahaya accepts Dean for who he is (although Dean is gay). She never gives up on him. Cahaya's sincerity and kindness make Dean become a straight guy again. Yep, Cahaya heals Dean.

Reading ILP makes me learned 3 life and moral lessons that are important to us as human beings. And the lessons are...


#1 LGBT PEOPLE AND HOW TO HEAL THEM

In Islam, LGBT is wrong and forbidden. However, we, Muslim people must not discriminate those who are LGBT. LGBT people are still human beings. They deserve love and kindness from us. Like Ustaz Ebit Lew (a Malaysian Islamic preacher) once said that all LGBT people have their background story. There are reasons why these people choose to be gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender. Most of them have sad stories. That's why we, Muslims must treat these people with kindness. Only our kindness can change them. After all, Islam is a religion of kindness. Not violence and terrorism. 

In the story, Dean becomes gay because he was so depressed with his life. His late father, mother, and elder sister weren't kind to him. Poor Dean was treated badly by his family. And that's how he became gay. Dean believed that being gay will make him happy. When Dean married Cahaya, his life started to change. Cahaya healed Dean. But she did it in a very gentle way. Cahaya only used her sincerity and kindness to open up Dean's heart. And at the end of the story, Dean becomes a straight guy again.


#2 THE POWER OF KINDNESS 

Kindness is the most important message in ILP. The author highlighted the power of kindness in her book. Kindness has the ability to open up a person's heart, make a person believe in beautiful things, and make a sinner a good person once again. 

As human beings, it is not our duty to discriminate those who have a dark past either he or she is gay or a love-child. Nobody is perfect. That's why we must not be so judgemental of people. After all, everyone is loved by Allah S.W.T. Allah S.W.T is very forgiving. Every saint has a dark past, and every sinner has a bright future, and paradise is open to those who work hard to achieve it.


#3 THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF-LOVE

Besides LGBT and kindness, the author also highlighted the importance of self-love practice in her writing. In ILP, Dean doesn't self-love in him, and he was suffering from an inferiority complex. Dean always thinks that he is a terrible person and not as good as anyone else. In one of his healing process, Dean was told to have good affirmations every time he wakes up in the morning. So he did what he was told to do. And that also helps him to become a better person.


Ok, so these are the 3 life and moral lessons I learned from reading ILP.  Overall, ILP is a very beautiful and brilliant novel. Umie Nadzimah's style of writing once again touched my heart. I cried in the middle and at the end of the story. The storyline is so heartwarming. Umie Nadzimah's style of writing also makes me able to feel each character in the story. Yep, I can feel Cahaya, Dean, Mr. Firdaus, Mrs. Wahidah, Datuk Sri Afnan (Cahaya's biological father), Anggun (Cahaya's elder sister), Dahlia (Cahaya's youngest sister), Datin Junaidah, Izfairin (Dean's gay lover), and many more.

As a reader, I rate this novel 10/10. I would repeat reading this novel. I believe Imamku Lelaki Pendosa is the best novel I've read in 2020. I also highly recommend all bookworms to read this novel. Yep, Imamku Lelaki Pendosa is a novel you guys must not miss.


Ok, that's all for now. Before I end this post I would like to ask my readers two questions. Has anyone read Imamku Lelaki Pendosa by Umie Nadzimah? If yes, what are your opinion about this novel?

Thank you for reading this novel review. Hope to see you guys again soon.


XoXo,

Fadima Mooneira ^_^


#ImamkuLelakiPendosa #UmieNadzimah #BahasaMalaysiaNovel #RomanceNovel #MalaysianAuthor #FadimaMooneiraLibrary #NovelReview #Edutainment #FadimaMooneiraBlogspot


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Comments

  1. Wow I just loved reading your review. The story is so intriguing. Would love to read this one to know what happened next. Thanks for sharing it.

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  2. Great review! Glad you enjoyed this book - it sounds like a wonderful read!

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  3. I love the lessons you share from this book - It makes me want to read it to experience those lessons from the book myself at a deeper level

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    1. I’m happy to hear that you are interested ILP. I would suggest the author to have it translate in English.

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  4. Thanks for sharing your great review however I don't think that I would read it myself as I believe that the idea that LGBT people are only that way because of their mental health and that their sexuality can be "healed" is incredibly toxic.

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    1. Ok, your opinion. I’m not gonna argue with it because freedom of speech is allowed. But I do like to share with you my experience. During my younger days I used to have some LGBT friends. I do ask them why they choose to be LGBT. Most of them give answers that relate to mental health. Just like the male MC in ILP- Dean Ilyas. Plus, I healed one of my transgender friends. Now she's a pure woman. I’m grateful.

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  5. Sounds like this book has a lot of important themes! Great review :)

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    1. This novel is about love, kindness, and sincerity.

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  6. I loved all your takeaways from this book! Great post and it was cool that you met the author!

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    1. Hehehe........the author is one of my creative writing mentors now. She is an awesome person.

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  7. Lovely review! I haven't heard of this book but it sounds like a great read

    Tash

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    1. Yes, it is. Plus, the author’s writing touched my heart 💖

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  8. Great post! I always think it's important when you like the main character of a book, and characters are so important for me. Thanks for sharing all your thoughts on this one x

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    1. So true. Characterization is very important in books, movies, and dramas. Characters are the one that attaches readers or viewers to the story.

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  9. Hey! Interesting book here, I am not familiar at all with Malaysian authors so thank you for sharing it with us!

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  10. Great review! I haven't heard of this author or the book but this sounds super interesting. Thanks for sharing x

    xoxo Olivia | http://www.oliviaandbeauty.com

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  11. That's so awesome the author is one of your mentors! What a great experience you have with her. Thanks for sharing this review -- there are so many twists and turns!

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    1. Welcome. Yep, Pn. Umie is one of my mentors. I just got to know her this year. She's an awesome person.

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  12. menarik cerita die. macam2 konflik ada..dah la dengan sejarang keluarga die,..kemudian putus tunang. dah kahwin dengan orang lain LGBT plak..wah..mencabar hidup CAhaya ni kan

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    1. Yep, byk dugaan hidup yg Cahaya hadapi. Tapi sumer dia hadapi dengan tenang.

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  13. Wow! It's pretty unusual to see LGBT theme in romantic novels by a Malaysian author. What more Umie Nadzimah is such a prolific writer! Kudos to her for brave enough to bring such theme and by your 10/10 rate, I suddenly feel like I need to read this novel too!

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    1. It's about how to heal LGBT people. The main theme is kindness.

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  14. Menarik juga jalan ceritanya. Boleh baca tentang LGBT ni. Marsha pun nak tahu lebh lanjut tentang golongan ini kenapa jadi macam tu.

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    1. Then ILP is the right novel for you. You can learn a lot about LBGT and how to help them through Pn. Umie’s work.

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  15. Nampak menarik kisah ni tambahan pula sebab berkait dengan isu semasa kan.. hurm pokok pangkal balik pada agama dan tanamkan dalam diri betul2 rasa takut dan kecintaan pada Allah..Insyallah semua yg buruk ni tak berlaku

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    1. Yep, jaga hubungan dgn Allah S.W.T. Insya’Allah Allah S.W.T akan bawa kita keluar dari kegelapan.

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  16. Such a good review and moral of story you include. the story happen a lot in reality life. so its good to read the book. so many input we can get

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  17. This is really interesting take on a different perspective about the marginalized community. I have had experience with this group of community too and I think sometimes I pity them.

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    1. Same here. I pun masa zaman muda mudi byk kawan gay, lesbian, transgender, and bisexual. All of them ada sejarah silam.

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  18. This sounds like such a great book to read. Its great that the author is including topics that aren't always talked about. Great review.

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  19. Wahh.. bestnya cerita dia. Mesti one day jadi drama juga macam karya Umie Nadzimah yang lain. Then i terbayang hero tu Shukri Yahaya sebab dia pernah bawak watak lembut. ^_^

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    1. Slalu nyer kalo jadik drama i x minat nak tengok. Sebab quality kureng berbanding dgn novel dia. Shukri Yahya? Don’t know who he is. I terbayang Henry Golding as Dean Ilyas sms baca novel nie. Hehehe.

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  20. It's an interesting take on changing the mindset of a LGBT person. Not sure if it's strictly accurate but the romance sounds lovely :P

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    1. Idk about you. But I do believe that LGBT is related to mental health. Usually these people do suffer from anxiety and most of them has dark past.

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  21. First time dengar nama novelis ni. Dah lama jugak tak baca novel tebal2 ni. Nampak jalan cerita dalam novel ini menggunakan topik yang agak kontroversi tapi masih menarik. Bolehlah nnti diadaptasi menjadi drama atau filem.

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    1. Hmm......kalo diadaptasi jadi drama or film i x sure i will be interested to watch it or not. Sbab selalu nyer the drama or film won’t be a a good as the book. Especially kalo Malaysian Yg but dgn lakonan actors and actresses yg x berkualiti. Tapi kalo international Yg buat says nak tengok lah. Hehehe.

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  22. It sounds like an interesting read, and how great that you get to work with the author! Not sure I fully agree with the LGBT thoughts, but do agree that everyone should be treated with kindess and equally.
    Aimsy xoxo

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  23. Great review, sounds like a really touching reach and I love the lessons it teaches!

    Anika | chaptersofmay.com

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  24. Kesiannya Cahaya.. ni kalau ada drama pun sedih juga ni kann.. dan salah satu isu hangat sekarang ni 'gay'.. rasa macam nak cari le pulak nak tau apa kesudahannya.. nanti you update yaa..

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    1. I update? Ahax! I suggest you go to the nearest bookstore to purchase and read this novel yourself.

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  25. Woww full mark untuk novel ni. Tak kenal penulis tapi bila salah satu list novelnya lelaki kiriman tuhan which is ada buat drama, novel dia mesti best-best.suka cerita macam ni, membimbing seseorang ke jalan yang benar

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    1. Yeah......me too. Cerita macam NIe touch my heart ❤️

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  26. this seems like a very interesting book. love that it comes with so many amazing lessons. thank you so much for sharing! :)

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  27. OMG, I wasn't expecting that in the beginning. So dramatic and love this novel tho.. I will check this out! If there is drama about this, it will be super cool but well, not everyone in Malaysia can except that kind of story line... Anyway, this is a brave move by the author..

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    1. Ehemmm........citer dia pasal nak mengubati golongan sonsang. Bukan utk anggap budaya songsang as hiburan. Yes, you should read ILP. Trust me, you’ll love it

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  28. Baca half story pon dah best. Ena dah tengok lelaki kiriman tuhan. Cite tu best jugak. Tak boleh bayangkan watak cahaya ni berat. Nama dia sama dengan nama anak Mawi

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    1. Oh ye ke? Saya x ambil tahu kisah Mawi. Kalo ILP diadaptasi jadi drama/movie......i hope it won’t Emma Maembong or Mira Filzah yg lakonkan watak Cahaya. Those shits will ruin Cahaya Malaika for me.

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  29. Cahaya Malaika, sedap nama tu..character dia pun baik kan..dia betul2 tabah dengan dugaan yg dia hadapi..kalau iena tak tau lah mcm mana nak berhadapan situasi ni..
    kesian jugak Dean tu depressed sampai jadi gay

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    1. Tu la........saya simpati both Cahaya and Dean. But I’m happy that Cahaya is very strong.

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  30. Kesiannya Cahaya Malaika. Dah dapat husband tapi gay pula. Tapi memang ada kisah benar macam novel ni . Cx pernah baca orang kongsi cerita dia. Tapi akhirnya dia dapat ubah laki dia. Apa agaknya keputusan dan tindakan Cahaya Malaika ya. Dah lama tak baca novel.

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    1. Cahaya saying kat Dean macam nak mati. So dia rawat Dean. Tapi dia gunakan kasih sayang dan cara yg lembut. Akhirnya Dean sembuh jua.

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  31. Thanks for sharing this review and i also learnt some tips with LGBT, they are human too, they need love and care too.

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  32. I think my sister have this book. Baca review you ni teringin nak pinjam baca. Hihi

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  33. Wahh, ika teringin nak baca buku ni tapi takpe ika baca dlu buku penulis yang lain hee. thanks for sharinG!

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    1. Welcome. Yes, you need to read this novel. It's a beautiful one.

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