Qureshi’s searingly honest and uplifting memoir to Elliott & Thompson

May 19, 2020

You can’t choose who you fall in love with, they say. If only it were that simple.

Elliott & Thompson is delighted to announce its forthcoming publication of How We Met: A Memoir of Family and Falling in Love by Huma Qureshi. As much as it is about love, How We Met is also about falling out with and misunderstanding each other, and how sometimes even our closest relationships can feel so far away. Warm, wise and ultimately uplifting, this is a coming-of-age story about what it really means to find ‘happy ever after’.

Growing up in Walsall in the 1990s, Huma straddled two worlds – school and teenage crushes in one, and the expectations and unwritten rules of her family’s south Asian social circle in the other. Reconciling the two was sometimes a tightrope act, but she managed it. Until it came to marriage. 

How We Met takes us through years of painfully awkward “halal dating” encounters, funny and soul-destroying, in search of ‘the one’. Eventually Huma realises that marriage – arranged or otherwise – can’t be the all-consuming purpose of her life. As she learns to focus on herself she begins to realise that searching for a suitor has been masking everything that was wrong in her life: grief for her father, the weight of expectation, and her uncertainty about who she really is. And then she meets someone. Neither Pakistani nor Muslim nor brown, and therefore technically not suitable at all. When your worlds collide, how do you measure one love against another?

Director Olivia Bays acquired world rights from Lauren Gardner at Bell Lomax Moreton. She said: ‘I am a huge fan of Huma’s beautiful writing and we are delighted to be publishing How We Met, which feels like a breath of much-needed fresh air right now. By turns heart-wrenching and hopeful, this is the book Huma looked for but never found when she was searching for her own happy ending. We hope it brings many, many readers the same joy it brought us.’

Huma Qureshi said: ‘Elliott & Thompson make such beautiful books and I’m so thrilled to be joining their book family. How We Met is, at its heart, very much a love story, but it’s also about grief and loss and growing up. It’s a little bit sad, a little bit funny, but most of all it is full of hope.’

About the Author

Huma Qureshi is an award-winning writer and journalist, author of In Spite of Oceans (2014) and contributor to The Best Most Awful Job: Twenty Writers Talk Honestly About Motherhood (2019). A former Guardian reporter, she has also written for The Times, The Independent and The Observer, as well as magazines including Grazia, New Statesman, Psychologies, gal-dem and The Huffington Post. She is a regular contributor to BBC2’s Pause for Thought and has appeared as a contributor on BBC Woman’s Hour, BBC London, BBC Breakfast and the BBC Asian Network.