Authors Corner

Todd Lawson is Emeritus Professor of Islamic Thought at the University of Toronto, Canada. He has published widely on Quran commentary, the Quran as literature, Sufism, and the Bábí and Bahá’í movements. His book, Being Human was published in 2019, the Crucifixion and the Quran in 2009 , followed by Gnostic Apocalypse and Islam in 2011; he is also the editor of Reason and Inspiration in Islam, a collection of essays bringing together the disciplines of theology, philosophy and mysticism.

He has also published a book on the Quran as sacred epic. Todd embraced the Bahá’í Faith when he emigrated from the USA to Canada in his late teens, and remains an active participant of that community. He lives in Montreal and has been a member of the Community since 1968.

Author of the Spirit Within Club series, three short story collections, and the upcoming series of illustrated children’s books on Bahá'í life, Sahar was born the first of many siblings and cousins whom she entertained by creating stories and plotlines they could play to.  But soon, her interest in the paranormal took its toll on them.  Worried about the long-term effects (and therapy costs) of these increasingly scary stories her oldest was weaving for their terrified ears, her mother gave her a typewriter – and a writer was born.  Follow her reflections on her blog, the latest developments in her writing life on her Facebook page, and an overview of her writing on her author website.

From childhood, Ilona Sala Weinstein had a broad grounding in religion, with a Baha'i father, Jewish mother, and Catholic primary schooling.  Her years at McGill University introduced the concepts of agnosticism and atheism.  Travel adventures culminated in independently investigating and joining the Baha'i Faith far from home in Miami, Florida.

A career in teaching expanded into other education-related fields including creating museum activities for children and helping develop an online reference library of educational websites.  Love of reading began with fairy tales and nursery rhymes,  and never stopped. Writing seemed to follow. When some boxes of letters and papers of her aunt and uncle came her way she saw that these contained treasures to be shared, and Tending the Garden was the result.

Rachel Tremblay is a Canadian artist, musician and writer. Working on poetry, songs and hip-hop lyrics in her young adult life, she also spent a lot of time drawing. This led her to study fine arts in Matane, Quebec and then Kelowna, British Columbia. Without abandoning her other artistic endeavours, she wrote her first music album, under the band name August Elliot, upon returning to Quebec. During this time she married and had her first child. She spent a good part of the next decade honing her craft as a classical / surrealist painter under the wing of the Argentinian painter Alejandro Boim, all while writing music for her second album, gigging, working as a graphic designer, and giving life to a second child. Painting, music and poetry led her to finally write novels doused in magic and fantasy. A homeschooling mother, vegan and straight-edge, she lives against the grain as a spiritual warrior who believes in the innate goodness of the human heart. You can find her in her native Montreal or in the Laurentian woods walking her dogs or making art in some form or other.

Lida Berghuis was born in Iran and immigrated with her family to Canada when she was fourteen. Since then she has lived in three provinces of Canada, the US and the Netherlands.  She is very interested in the intersection of cultures and what we can learn from each other. She is a Teacher of English as a Second Language and has met new immigrants from many countries in her classes over the years. She lives in Montreal with her husband and family and is the mother of three children.


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