Author Sorayya Khan to read at York

Author Sorayya Khan, who moved with her parents to Islamabad at the age of 10, will read from her two novels this week.

The reading will take place Thursday from 3:30 to 5:30pm in the Verney Room, 674 South Ross Building, Keele campus.

Sorayya’s first novel Noor (The Publishing Laboratory, 2003) is described as a powerful and poignant story of memory, family, tragedy and forgiveness set in modern-day Islamabad. It depicts an extraordinary child, Noor, who enables her mother and grandfather to confront their past. It is through Noor’s artwork that her family faces their haunted memories of the 1970 cyclone that claimed the lives of a million people and the violent atrocities of the 1971 conflict between East and West Pakistan that eventually created the independent nation of Bangladesh.

Her second novel, Five Queen’s Road (Penguin Books India, 2008), weaves together family saga, memoir and national history. The house, Five Queen’s Road, initially built by an Englishman in Lahore, Pakistan, is shared between a Hindu landlord, a Muslim tenant and his family, and eventually, a foreign daughter-in-law who joins them. The novel is about memory and family, and surviving tragedies like the 1947 Partition of the Indian Subcontinent and Second World War in Europe.

Sorayya is the recipient of a Fulbright award and a winner of the Malahat Review Novella Prize. Her work has been published in several literary journals and anthologies.

This event is supported by Centre for Feminist Research, Trans-Border Feminist Collective, the School of Women’s Studies, the Associate Dean of Research, the York Centre for Asian Research, the York Centre for International and Security Studies and the Graduate Program in Political Science.