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Fatima Bhutto and Dina Nayeri in conversation at Foyles, Charing Cross

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Time 19:00
Date 11/06/19
Price £8

Join authors Fatima Bhutto and Dina Nayeri as they discuss their new books: The Runaways and The Ungrateful Refugee ahead of Refugee Week 2019.

Dina Nayeri weaves together her own story of fleeing Iran at the age of 8 with those of refugees more recently uprooted. The Ungrateful Refugee explores the realities of journeying across borders in the hope of a fresh start—and the emotions involved at each stage of these deeply personal journeys, from escape to asylum and resettlement.

Reviews for The Ungrateful Refugee

“Written with compassion, tenderness and a burning anger…It speaks powerfully from – and to – the heart. Please read it” - Robert Macfarlane, Underland, Landmarks

"Unflinching, complex, provocative and important.” - Nikesh Shukla, The Good Immigrant

“The Ungrateful Refugee should be compulsory reading if [policymakers] are to regain or retain a sense of humanity.” - Steve Crawshaw, Small Acts of Resistance, and Goodby to the USSR. Policy Director, Freedom from Torture

“Dina Nayeri’s powerful writing confronts issues that are key to the refugee experience.” - Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Sympathizer and The Refugees

The Runaways - a bold new novel from bestselling Pakistani author Fatima Bhutto, The Runaways follows the lives of three very different characters whose fates cross paths in the desert attempting to escape the secrets of their past.

Both authors will discuss their new works with broadcaster and journalist Georgina Godwin. The event will be followed by a Q&A and a book signing.


Dina Nayeri is the author of “The Ungrateful Refugee,” one of the most widely shared 2017 Long Reads in The Guardian. Winner of the 2018 UNESCO City of Literature Paul Engle Prize, a National Endowment for the Arts literature grant (2015), O. Henry Prize(2015), Best American Short Stories (2018), and fellowships from the McDowell Colony, Bogliasco Foundation, and Yaddo, her stories and essays have been published by The New York Times, New York Times Magazine, The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, New Yorker, Granta New Voices, Wall Street Journal, and many others. Her debut novel, A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea (2013) was translated to 14 languages. Her second novel, Refuge (2017) was a New York Times editor’s choice.  She holds a BA from Princeton, an MBA from Harvard, and an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Truman Capote Fellow and Teaching Writing Fellow. Dina’s next book, a work of narrative nonfiction on the refugee life called The Ungrateful Refugee is forthcoming in 2019.  She lives in London.

Fatima Bhutto is the author of two books: Whispers of the Desert, a volume of poetry, which was published in 1997 by Oxford University Press Pakistan when Fatima was 15 years old. 8.50 a.m. 8 October 2005, a collection of first-hand accounts from survivors of the 2005 earthquake in Pakistan, was published by OUP in 2006. Her third book, Songs of Blood and Sword, will be published around the world in 2010.

Fatima wrote a weekly column for Jang - Pakistan's largest Urdu newspaper and its English sister publication The News – for two years. She covered the Israeli Invasion and war with Lebanon from Lebanon in the summer of 2006 and also reported from Iran in January 2007 and Cuba in April 2008. Fatima’s work has appeared in the New Statesman, Daily Beast, Guardian, and The Caravan Magazine. Fatima lives and writes in Karachi, Pakistan.