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April's Affections and Intrigues: Love and Mystery Bloom


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Alina Khawaja | A Young Woman Unlucky in Love May Have Finally Met the Love of Her Life

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1--What is the title of your latest release?

MAYA’S LAWS OF LOVE!

2--What’s the “elevator pitch” for your new book?

A young woman who has always been unlucky in love may have finally met the love of her life… while on the way to her own wedding.

3--How did you decide where your book was going to take place?

I visited Pakistan in 2020 for the first time after 15 years, and while being there it fed my diaspora soul in ways I didn’t expect, so I knew I wanted to set a book there. When I sat down to outline MAYA, I decided to set it in Pakistan. But a chunk of the book also takes place in Switzerland, and that actually arose out of the fact that I needed Maya and Sarfaraz—the main character and her love interest—to spend more time together before they reach their final destinations in Pakistan. So while thinking about what to do, I remembered that while flying to Pakistan we passed over Switzerland, so I thought “if we fly OVER Switzerland, we could feasibly make an emergency stop there.” And that’s where the setting came from!

4--Would you hang out with your protagonist in real life?

I think I would! Maya’s a lot of fun and very sincere, but if her bad luck starts to spread to people around her, then I’d make a polite excuse to not hang out with her haha.

5--What are three words that describe your protagonist?

Sincere, optimistic, and kind.

6--What’s something you learned while writing this book?

Surprisingly, how to plan an itinerary for travel haha. I spent a lot of time searching up train routes and tourist trips in Switzerland.

7--Do you edit as you draft or wait until you are totally done?

I definitely wait until I’m totally done. I lose my momentum if I go back and edit.

8--What’s your favorite foodie indulgence?

There are these garlic, cheese bites from a pizza place that I absolutely love.

9--Describe your writing space/office!

I write in my bedroom, and I write at my desk! I have my external monitor and a stand for my laptop, as well as a keyboard and a mouse.

10--Who is an author you admire?

I feel like Emily Henry is the typical answer for a romance author, but I truly do love her work. I feel like she has such a way with plot and characterization it’s so easy to get swept up in her books.

11--Is there a book that changed your life?

It’s technically a series but The Summoning series by Kelley Armstrong. I read it when I was like twelve. It was the first YA book/series I ever read, and it was truly an adrenaline shot into my heart. I had already been a big reader before then, but after reading those books I became addicted to YA in a way that truly fostered my love for reading, and eventually writing.

12--Tell us about when you got “the call.” (when you found out your book was going to be published)/Or, for indie authors, when you decided to self-publish.

Okay, so for me, I got a call from my agent saying that an editor wanted to talk on the phone with me. It wasn’t an official offer at the time; just a quick chat to see if we vibed well, and then a couple of days later I received an email from my agent that my publisher had officially offered. I got the email while on the way up to the beach, and I can’t say how special that was to me, because the beach is one of my favorite places in the world.

13--What’s your favorite genre to read?

Romance! Which may be obvious haha.

14--What’s your favorite movie?

I have soooooo many but I’ll say Jab We Met, which is a Bollywood movie, and I say this because I use it as a comp title for MAYA’S LAWS OF LOVE!

15--What is your favorite season?

Autumn! I loveee the vibes, the world starts to cool down, and it’s such a cozy time of the year.

16--How do you like to celebrate your birthday?

I really just enjoy being with my friends and family.

17--What’s a recent tv show/movie/book/podcast you highly recommend?

I recently binged Flower of Evil, which is a K-drama and it is so GOOD!! I cannot tell you how amazing this drama was. I was so obsessed I watched it all in like three days haha.

18--What’s your favorite type of cuisine?

Italian food. I loveeee me some pizza and pasta.

19--What do you do when you have free time?

Aside from reading, I like playing video games and watching K-dramas.

20--What can readers expect from you next?

My next romance novel has been announced already! It’s called STRANGER THAN FICTION and it follows a young woman who is about to give up on her dreams of publishing when the physical manifestation of her writing muse appears in her apartment. It’s out in 2025!

MAYA'S LAWS OF LOVE by Alina Khawaja

Maya's Laws of Love

A bride-to-be convinced she’s cursed in romance finds her luck changing—at exactly the wrong time.

Maya Mirza is so convinced she’s unlucky in love that she’s come up with a list of laws to explain it. Most importantly…

  • Maya’s Law #1: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.

But that’s about to change. Maya’s headed to Pakistan for an arranged marriage with a handsome, successful doctor who ticks all the right boxes. First comes marriage, then comes love—she’s sure of it. Except…

  • Law #4: When you think you’re lucky, think again.

From the start, Maya's journey is riddled with disaster, and the cynical lawyer seated next to her on the plane isn’t helping. When a storm leaves them stranded in Switzerland, she and Sarfaraz become unlikely travel companions through bus breakdowns and missed connections.

  • Law #6: Trips are never smooth sailing.

And before long, Maya’s wondering whether she’s just experienced the ultimate in misfortune—finally meeting the right man a few days before she marries someone else. And Maya might just be the worst person to keep a secret.

  • Law #18: If you’re overtired, you’ll always spill your guts.

But maybe, if she’s willing to bend some laws, this detour could take her somewhere totally—and wonderfully—unexpected.

 

Romance Comedy | Multicultural [MIRA, On Sale: March 26, 2024, Trade Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780778305248 / eISBN: 9780369747129]

Buy MAYA'S LAWS OF LOVEAmazon.com | Kindle | BN.com | Apple Books | Kobo | Google Play | Powell's Books | Books-A-Million | Indie BookShops | Ripped Bodice | Walmart.com | Target.com | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon DE | Amazon FR

About Alina Khawaja

Alina Khawaja

Alina Khawaja is a Canadian-Pakistani author. A graduate from the University of Toronto with a BA in English, History and Creative Writing and from Toronto Metropolitan University with an MA in the Literatures of Modernity, it’s been clear from day one that the only thing Alina could be is a storyteller. Alina lives in Ontario, Canada, where she spends the summer at theme parks and the winter cozying up inside with a ridiculously expensive coffee. When she’s not writing, she’s either reading or trying to keep up with her endless list of k-dramas.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM

 

 

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