Cityread London 2019

One City. One Month. One Book.

Cityread returns for its eighth annual festival, turning the capital – and some spots further afield! – into one massive, interactive book group with Ayisha Malik’s Sofia Khan is Not Obliged as the city’s collective page-turner from 1st – 31st May

Billed as the Muslim Bridget Jones, Sofia Khan is Not Obliged is the hilarious romantic comedy from the writer behind Nadiya Hussain’s bestselling The Secret Lives of the Amir Sisters. Sofia Khan is single once more, after her sort-of-boyfriend proves just a little too close to his parents. And she’d be happy that way too, if her boss hadn’t asked her to write a book about the weird and wonderful world of Muslim dating. Of course, even though she definitely isn’t looking for love, to write the book she does need to do a little research . . .

The month-long celebration of reading will help Londoners discover and celebrate their city through its stories.

Launching with an event at the House of Lords on 1st May, and running throughout the month, expect live readings from the novel by Anjli Mohindra and Nina Wadia, author discussions chaired by Helen Lederer with Ayisha and Candice Carty-Williams at the London Library, and events in public libraries across 24 London boroughs plus Luton and Slough, with lots more very special announcements to come.

Cityread London 2019 is supported by a generous grant from Amal, a programme of the Saïd Foundation.

Key partnerships include the Museum of London, Aga Khan Centre, Waterstones Tottenham Court Road, and Picturehouse Greenwich.

Ayisha Malik says: “I couldn’t be more excited for Sofia Khan is Not Obliged to be selected for Cityread this year. It’s already a special year for me with the publication of my third novel This Green and Pleasant Land in June, and to have my debut book out there again with the whole of London reading it is just wonderful!” Click here for Ayisha’s Cityread Intro Video

“We couldn’t be more thrilled that Ayisha and her enduring novel Sofia Khan is not Obliged has been chosen as this year’s Cityread London. Ayisha’s distinctive voice is smart, funny and engaging and now even more readers will have the opportunity to discover her brilliant writing. I’m so proud that Bonnier Books UK is taking part in this annual celebration of literature and meaningful cultural moment for London.” Perminder Mann, CEO, Bonnier Books UK

Supporters & Funders

Ayisha Malik is a British Muslim born and raised in South London. She holds a First Class MA in Creative Writing. Her novels Sofia Khan is Not Obliged and The Other Half of Happiness starring ‘the Muslim Bridget Jones’ were met with critical acclaim. She was a WHSmith Fresh Talent Pick, contributed to the anthology A Change is Gonna Come (Stripes Publishing): short stories and poems by BAME authors. Ayisha’s third novel This Green and Pleasant Land publishes in hardback in June 2019. She is also the ghostwriter for The Great British Bake Off winner, Nadiya Hussain


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