For the last two decades the representation of Arab-Australian Muslims has been coloured by media reports of sexual assault, drug-dealing, drive-by shootings and terrorist conspiracy. This has made it difficult to understand a community which plays an important role in contemporary Australian society. Here, in his first work of fiction, Michael Mohammed Ahmad offers a privileged introduction to the life and customs of ‘The Tribe’, members of a small Muslim sect who fled to Australia just before the civil war in Lebanon. His stories focus on the relationships between three generations of an extended family, the House of Adam, as seen by one of its youngest offspring, a child called Bani, at key moments in its development. Ahmad’s writing is aware of tradition, but its real power is in its simplicity and honesty, and the directness with which he conveys the emotional responses of his young narrator.