Uzma Jalaluddin to read from her debut novel for Canadian Writers in Person lecture, Jan. 28

Ayesha at Last coverAs part of York University’s Canadian Writers in Person Lecture Series, author Uzma Jalaluddin will read from her debut novel, Ayesha at Last, on Jan. 28.

The series features 11 authors who will present their work, answer questions and sign books. Canadian Writers in Person is a for-credit course for students. It is also a free-admission event for members of the public. All readings take place at 7 p.m. on select Tuesday evenings in 206 Accolade West Building, Keele Campus.

Jalaluddin is a teacher who also writes a funny parenting column called “Samosas and Maple Syrup” for the Toronto Star.

In Jalaluddin’s debut novel, Ayesha at Last, Ayesha Shamsi has a lot going on. Her dreams of being a poet have been set aside for a teaching job so she can pay off her debts to her wealthy uncle. She lives with her boisterous Muslim family and is always being reminded that her flighty younger cousin Hafsa is close to rejecting her one hundredth marriage proposal. Though Ayesha is lonely, she doesn’t want an arranged marriage. Then she meets Khalid, who is just as smart and handsome as he is conservative and judgmental. She is irritatingly attracted to someone who looks down on her choices and who dresses like he belongs in the seventh century.

When a surprise engagement is announced between Khalid and Hafsa, Ayesha is torn between how she feels about the straightforward Khalid and the unsettling new gossip she hears about his family. Looking into the rumors, she finds she has to deal with not only what she discovers about Khalid, but also the truth she realizes about herself.

Other presentations scheduled in this series are:

Feb. 11: Carrianne Leung, That Time I Loved You, HarperCollins

March 3: E. Martin Nolan, Still Point, Invisible Publishing

March 17: David Bezmozgis, Immigrant City, HarperCollins

Canadian Writers in Person is a course offered out of the Culture & Expression program in the Department of Humanities in York University’s Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies. For more information on the series, visit yorku.ca/laps/canwrite, call 416-736-5158, or email Professor Gail Vanstone at gailv@yorku.ca or Professor Leslie Sanders at leslie@yorku.ca.

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