The Advance Review Copies for Seven are out now! If you are a reviewer or work in media, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to request a copy. For the rest of you, you can now pre-order the book!
I was asked to write a letter to advance readers, but I thought it might be interesting for any reader. Here it is:
Here are some things I’d like you to know:
1. Thanks for reading; I so appreciate you making time for Seven.
2. While this is a work of fiction, its characters are based on a real community. Few people have heard of Dawoodi Bohras; we are a fairly insular sub-sect of Shia Muslims. We are known for being polite, entrepreneurial, and cooking the tastiest daal.
3. Abdoolally is also fictional, but was inspired by my great-great grandfather, Hussonally Dholkawala. You can find out more about the real guy here.
4. A secret tunnel linking Dholka to Ahmedabad doesn’t really exist, or at least that’s what I’ve been told to say.
5. Khatna does really exist, unfortunately. To write the varied experiences of survivors, I read as much as I could, and talked to as many women as possible. I, too, am a survivor.
6. Sexuality is a porthole into understanding khatna, and that’s why I wanted to explore Shari’s and Murti’s sex life.
7. There is a global movement to stop khatna, and Dawoodi Bohra feminists are some of the most amazing people I’ve ever met. Check out this link for more info.