Since the discovery of oil in the Middle East, life has changed dramatically for 60-year-old Farah Abdullah al Matari of the United Arab Emirates. Raised in poverty in the desert, she now lives with her daughter in a spacious Abu Dhabi villa with a domestic staff. But the independent woman wants more out of life than sitting around and being waited on.
Spurred on by her granddaughters, Farah begins to move away from her at home existence and into a more active lifestyle. Along the way, she gains a number of friends, including Americans.
The Abaya Chronicles centers on Farah, her family and her friends. The fictional account showcases a generation of women using their education and their resources to help those less fortunate, to start businesses, and to support sports and other endeavors for women. In many respects, the novel also provides an education about life in an oil-rich country.