Nafisa Haji was born and mostly raised in Los Angeles—mostly, because there were years also spent in Chicago, Karachi, Manila, and London. Her family migrated from Bombay to Karachi in 1947 during Partition, when the Indian Subcontinent was divided into two states. In the late 1960s, Nafisa’s parents came to the United States, shortly before she was born, in order for her father to study engineering at Stanford. When she was six years old, they stuck with their original plan of “going back home” and moved to Karachi. In less than a year, they knew that they had become more American than they realized and came back to Los Angeles.
Nafisa studied American history at the University of California at Berkeley, taught elementary school in downtown Los Angeles for seven years in a bilingual Spanish program (she speaks Spanish fluently), and earned a doctorate in education from the University of California at Los Angeles. With an unfinished novel left long behind, she seized upon the birth of her son—when she decided to stay home fulltime—as an excuse to go back to writing, learning to use nap times and weekends very efficiently. She started writing short stories at first, which then developed into an idea for a novel. She now lives in Northern California with her husband and son and is currently working on her second novel. Nafisa maintains close ties in Pakistan, traveling there regularly to visit family.
Visit Nafisa Haji’s website.
About The Writing on My Forehead
From childhood, willful, intelligent Saira Qader broke the boundaries between her family’s traditions and her desire for independence. A free-spirited and rebellious Muslim-American of Indo-Pakistani descent, she rejected the constricting notions of family, duty, obligation, and fate, choosing instead to become a journalist, the world her home.
Five years later, tragedy strikes, throwing Saira’s life into turmoil. Now the woman who chased the world to uncover the details of other lives must confront the truths of her own. In need of understanding, she looks to the stories of those who came before—her grandparents, a beloved aunt, her mother and father. As Saira discovers the hope, pain, joy, and passion that defined their lives, she begins to face what she never wanted to admit—that choice is not always our own, and that faith is not just an intellectual preference.
“THE WRITING ON MY FOREHEAD is not only a family history but also a social history with an ambitious arc. Haji deftly illustrates how the Qaders’ lives intersect with defining world events. (Haji is a) talented new writer of sense and a distinct sensibility.”
— San Francisco Chronicle
Nafisa’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS
Monday, March 1st: Literary Feline
Wednesday, March 10th: Bibliophile by the Sea
Thursday, March 11th: My Books. My Life.
Monday, March 15th: Lit and Life
Wednesday, March 17th: BookNAround
Tuesday, March 23rd: Book Dilettante
Wednesday, March 24th: A Sea of Books
Thursday, March 25th: Luxury Reading
Monday, March 29th: Lost in Books
Wednesday, March 31st: Book Club Classics!