‘Mullah’ author returns for second signing

MUSLIM AUTHOR: Afzal believes there is a market for Asian and Jewish writers

A FORMER University of Salford student will be returning to The Trafford Centre, Manchester, for the second signing session of his debut novel.

Sagheer Afzal, 37, who studied physics at the uni, returned to the North West for a book signing of his novel ‘The Reluctant Mullah’ on Friday 19 February 2010.

The event was so successful that Waterstone’s has invited him back for a second signing session on Saturday 3 April at 11am.

The book tells a story of a young Muslim man called Musa who is facing the prospect of an arranged marriage.

He strikes a deal with the leader of his family who tells him that he has got a month to find a wife or he must marry the woman that the family chooses.

When his friends and siblings step into help him on his quest for love hilarious situations ensue.

Speaking to Manchester Mouth about why he decided to write The Reluctant Mullah, Afzal, who now lives in Peterborough, said: “I decided to write a book because of how repetitive Asian fiction was. It was always the same story.

“My lead character is a fun-loving young man who tries to enrich his life through religion rather than suppress it. An idealist who uses the Qur’an to guide him in his own life.

CONFLICT: Musa struggles between religion and reality

“The plot explores his adventures in the world outside the madrasah; where with the help and hindrance of his family, he tries to reconcile his reality with his religion.”

The novel took Afzal almost two and a half years to write and edit but he said that a couple of quotes kept him going during the writing process.

“One fellow writer told me ‘If you’re Jewish or Asian it’s easier to get published. There’s a market out there for circumcised people who can write’.

“Sometimes on a good day writing can flow like music. Other days it is like constipation.”

Fine sentiments indeed Afzal.

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