Hi Radhika and welcome to HJ! We’re so excited to chat with you about your new release, 30 THINGS I LOVE ABOUT MYSELF!
Please summarize the book for the readers here:
30 Things I Love About Myself is all about Nina Mistry – a journalist who ends up spending her 30th birthday in a prison cell after breaking up with her fiancé. She ends up going on a journey to love herself, all whilst living back at home with her perfectionist mother and depressed brother, and slowly ends up changing not just her life but those of her loved ones!
Please share the opening lines of this book:
Nina did not want to spend her thirtieth birthday in a prison cell. But unfortunately, it looked like that was exactly what was about to happen. “Here we are.” The fiftysomething police officer who’d been in charge of Nina ever since she’d been led into Leicester police station with handcuffs around her wrists and mascara down her eyes stopped abruptly outside a heavy metal door.
Please share a few Fun facts about this book…
- The book is structured in terms of the zodiac seasons, so each star sign gets its own chapters, with some information about them. Because I love astrology, but also because astrology features so much in the book!
- As I was writing it, I listened to a ‘self love’ playlist I made on Spotify – which only features songs that have inspiring lyrics.
I wrote most of this book sitting in cafes, drinking tea and eating cake.
Please tell us a little about the characters in your book. As you wrote your protagonist was there anything about them that surprised you?
Nina Mistry is 30, she is a struggling freelance journalist, her life is falling apart – but she’s an eternal optimist who is determined to fix her life. I thought I might find her annoying at times, but she’s so self-aware that you can’t help but love her even when she’s making terrible choices.
Her mum Rupa is a perfectionist who cares too much about appearances, constantly criticizes Nina and lets fear rule her life. She says some awful things, but she’s actually the funniest character. I was surprised by how much her personality took over the book!
And then there’s Kal – Nina’s brother. He’s struggling with depression, and his story ended up making me cry as I wrote the book. You’ll have to read it to find out more…
If your book was optioned for a movie, what scene would you use for the audition of the main characters and why?
Definitely the opening scene where Nina is in prison and – spoiler – ends up meditating for the first time in her life. I’d also have the next scenes where her mum Rupa collects her from the police station and instead of being worried about her daughter, she’s more concerned about how musty her clothes smell.
What do you want people to take away from reading this book?
I would love for people to take away some of the messages about self-love, and for them to be inspired to go on their own journeys to write lists of things they love about themselves. Or if not, to at least understand how important it is to take care of yourself and be your own best friend.
What are you currently working on? What other releases do you have planned?
I’m working on my next novel – another dark comedy – all about three sisters and a funeral!
Thanks for blogging at HJ!
Giveaway: One Print copy of 30 THINGS I LOVE ABOUT MYSELF by Radhika Sanghani to a winner with a valid US shipping address.
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When Nina Mistry’s life hits rock bottom, she decides to change her stars by falling in love…with herself—a hilarious, heartfelt story from outrageously funny novelist Radhika Sanghani.
Nina didn’t plan to spend her thirtieth birthday in jail, yet here she is in her pajamas, locked in a holding cell. There’s no Wi-Fi, no wine, no carbs—and no one to celebrate with.
Unfortunately, it gives Nina plenty of time to reflect on how screwed up her life is. She’s just broken up with her fiancé, and now has to move back into her childhood home to live with her depressed older brother and their uptight, traditional Indian mother. Her career as a freelance journalist isn’t going in the direction she wants, and all her friends are too busy being successful to hang out with her.
Just as Nina falls into despair, a book lands in her cell: How to Fix Your Shitty Life by Loving Yourself. It must be destiny. With literally nothing left to lose, Nina makes a life-changing decision to embark on a self-love journey. By her next birthday, she’s going to find thirty things she loves about herself.
Meet the Author:
Radhika Sanghani is an award-winning journalist and author based in London. She writes features for publications like the Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and Grazia. Her two previous novels, Virgin and Not That Easy were published in 13 countries worldwide, with Virgin made into an online TV series. Radhika is also a body positive campaigner, and founded the #sideprofileselfie movement to celebrate big noses. 30 Things I Love About Myself is her third novel.