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Muhammad Khan - Author

About the Author

Muhammad Khan is an engineer, a secondary-school maths teacher and YA author. His critically acclaimed debut novel I Am Thunder was shortlisted for numerous awards including the Great Read Award and TSBA Book Awards, among others making him a promising voice in the YA fiction world. He lives in South London and is studying for an MA in Creative Writing at St Mary’s.

On winning the prestigious Branford Boase Award 2019 for his outstanding debut he said;

‘I am stunned, humbled and thrilled to learn that I am Thunder has won the Branford Boase Award. To do so in its glorious 20th year is completely mindboggling! Just to be shortlisted among such a talented bunch of authors with incredible debut novels was exciting enough.’

He thanked his editor Lucy Pearse: ‘Every writer owes a huge debt of gratitude to their editor – more so debuts. Our editors work tirelessly to correct our rookie mistakes, incoherent plots, cardboard characters, and continuity errors. No mean feat! Sharing the experience of bringing I am Thunder to publication with Lucy Pearse has been an unforgettable privilege. I’m not going to lie: it was also extremely exhausting; involved copious re-writes, tight deadlines and the unsung pressures of being a full time maths teacher. She not only understood Muzna - this character I was just as fiercely protective of as any of my real-life students - but she knew exactly how to present her to the world. Lucy is one of the bravest, kindest and most talented people I have ever met and sharing this award with her is so special.’
He added: ‘Over the last several years, Muslims have had more than our fair share of struggles. We’ve had to deal with the spectre of 9/11, ISIS spreading a false version of Islam, the notorious ‘Kill a Muslim Day’, Islamophobic attacks both on individuals and mosques, discussions centred on what we can and can’t wear, misrepresentation in the media and exclusion from conversations about us. I am a Muslim author writing about Muslims and depicting the plurality that is our reality. That I am the first writer of colour to win the prestigious Branford Boase Award gives me tremendous hope for the future.’

Photo © Sarah Blackie

Featured books by Muhammad Khan

Other books by Muhammad Khan

Kick the Moon

Kick the Moon

Author: Muhammad Khan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 24/01/2019

A powerful, compelling novel from the critically-acclaimed author of the Branford Boase-winning I Am Thunder, about making friends, and breaking them too. Fifteen-year-old Ilyas is under pressure from everyone: GCSE's are looming and his teachers just won't let up, his dad wants him to join the family business and his mates don't care about any of it. There's no space in Ilyas' life to just be a teenager. Serving detention one day, Ilyas finds a kindred spirit in Kelly Matthews, who is fed up with being pigeonholed as the good girl, and their friendship blows the social strata of high school wide open. But when Kelly catches the eye of one of the local bad boys, Imran, he decides to seduce her for a bet - and Ilyas is faced with losing the only person who understands him. Standing up to Imran puts Ilyas' family at risk, but it's time for him to be the superhero he draws in his comic-books, and go kick the moon. Kick the Moon, is Muhammad Khan's explosive second novel, with original comic-book art from Amrit Birdi, bestselling illustrator of Username:Evie. 'Funny, angry, powerful' Patrice Lawrence, award-winning author of OrangeBoy 'A powerful novel that encapsulates the experiences of teenage boys with wit and heroism' Nikesh Shukla, author of Run Riot '[Written] with humour and empathy' Independent '[An] ambitious, wryly funny, optimistic-against-the-odds novel' Times Literary Supplement 'Khan's gift for authentic characters and believable dialogue makes his writing sing' Bookseller

I Am Thunder

I Am Thunder

Author: Muhammad Khan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/01/2018

I Am Thunder is the Branford Boase Award-winning debut novel which questions how far you'll go to stand up for what you believe. Fifteen-year-old Muzna Saleem is used to being invisible. So no one is more surprised than her when Arif Malik, the hottest boy in school, takes a sudden interest. But Arif is hiding a terrible secret and, as they begin to follow a dark path, Muzna faces an impossible choice: keep quiet and betray her beliefs, or speak out and betray her heart. Muhammad Khan's stunning, multi-award winning YA writing gets right to the centre of what it means to be an urban teenager today. 'An uplifting, empowering novel with hope at its heart' Observer Children's Book of the Week 'Funny and clever - a perspective long overdue in British fiction' Alex Wheatle, Guardian prize-winning author of Crongton Knights 'This one is special . . . punches well above the weight of most debuts' The Times 'This assured, hopeful debut feels unprecedented and essential' Guardian 'One of the most distinctive narrators I've read in ages.' Fiona Noble, Bookseller

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