The ten books you should read

ten books you should read

ten books you should read

When you start your journey to seek knowledge what books should your read when taking your first steps to get the necessary knowledge? I often get asked this question and these are the top 10 books I would suggest that everyone serious about knowledge should read:

  1. Aqeedah – Al-Fiqh Al-Akbar by Abu Hanifa.
  2. Tahawiyyah by Al-Imam Al-Tahawi.
  3. Fiqh – You need a book in fiqh which is simple and easy to read, so you can know everything you need about the five pillars, salah, fasting, zakat and Hajj. These are easily available.
  4. Tafseer – Mufti Taqi Usmani’s Meaning of the Quran, is his excellent commentary on his translation of the Quran, is very good. It is 2 volumes.
  5. Seerah – everybody needs to know the life of the Prophet (peace be on him). There are plenty of books on it. One of the best is Our Master Muhammad by Imam Abdullah Sirajuddin, translated by Khalid Williams with a forward by Shaykh al Ninowi.
  6. Sciences of Quran – you can read by the Science of the Quran, and the Sciences of Hadith by Shaykh Shuyab Hasan, which is short and easy to read.
  7. The History of the Quranic Text by the late Shaykh Mustafa al Azami.
  8. Introduction to Usul al Fiqh (The Principles of Fiqh)
  9. Introduction to the Maqasid al Shariah and Qawaid al Fiqhiyya
  10. Any biographies of the scholars and companions. And Islamic history for instance Imam al Dhahbi has written 3 volumes on the companions scholars of the first two centuries. It is more than 50 volumes but you don’t need to read all of it.
  11. Ibn Khaldun’s Muqqadimah.

I don’t advise reading Ibn Kathir as a tafseer, as it is 10 volumes and will leave you more confused. It is not meant for lay people.

Delivered by Shaykh Haytham Tamim on 2nd July 2020, The Boy who sold his Father’s Mule for a Book.


Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001. His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College). He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.