Laila Lalami was the first female Muslim author we read for our Ill Fated Muslim Book Club."Secret Son" chronicles a young Moroccan man's rise and fall within the patriarcal class society of modern Morocco.We chose this book for out book club because we had not read any works by women authors. Also, my husband reasoned that if we read a work of fiction, we would have to think about the book for ourselves. When Muslims are asked to read non-fiction about Islam, they tend not to read the book and simply repeat things they have heard from their imam, shaykh, parents, etc. We thought a fiction book would force people to think for themselves.The biggest surprise from this book was that men and women read it differently. The men dismissed it, saying they had already read this kind of story before. The women noticed that in "Secret Son", despite the fact that this is a patriarcal society, it is always the FEMALE characters that get what they want. The women are pulling the strings and giving men the illusion that the menfolk are in charge. In reality, the women call the shots.We were beginning to understand that for Muslims, single gender book clubs work very well: it gives mom her Ladies' Night Out, or dad his Guys' Night Out. Combining genders leads to not as much social fun (we witnessed a few marital disputes e.g. "Don't you tell me what I think!"), but men and women do read texts differently. These differences are lost when you have single gender book clubs.Despite the insight, no one was reading the books. My husband wanted to disband the club. I told him to wait until Ramadan, everything slows down and drops off the face of the earth then, but he wouldn't listen. He sent out this big email saying how if people couldn't commit to reading the book and attending the discussion, then the club would stop. Then a whole bunch of people started writing him saying, "No, don't stop the club!". Excuses were tendered, a number of women claimed to be reading the books but were unable to attend the meetings, and a "this is good for the community" guilt trip. A few claimed they enjoyed reading the books and would get the details of the discussion/debates in later one-on-one 'wrap-up' coffee talks. Based on this "no, no, keep it going" response, my husband decided to choose another fiction book written by a woman.