Canadian

Trust No Aunty

Maria Qamar's debut is an illustrated “survival guide” to deal with overbearing “Aunties," based on Qamar's popular Instagram account @Hatecopy.

Maria Qamar

(Simon and Schuster)

Based on her popular Instagram @Hatecopy and her experience in a South Asian immigrant family, artist Maria Qamar has created a humorous, illustrated "survival guide" to deal with overbearing "Aunties," whether they're family members, annoying neighbours or just some random ladies throwing black magic your way.

We've all experienced interference from our Aunties — they are at family parties and friendly get-togethers, finding ways to make your life difficult, trying to get you to marry their sons and telling you to lose weight while simultaneously feeding you a second dinner — and it has stunted our social growth and embarrassed us in front of our friends and cool cousins for years.

This tongue-in-cheek guide is full of advice designed to help you manage Aunty meddling and encourages you to pursue your passions — from someone who has been through it all. Qamar confesses to throwing sweatshirts over crop-tops to get out of the house without being questioned, hiding her boyfriend in a closet and enduring overbearing parents endless pressuring her to become a doctor, lawyer or engineer.

Holding onto your cultural identity is tough. Always interfering Aunties make it even harder. But ultimately, Aunties keep our lives interesting. As an Aunty-survivor and a woman who has lived the cross-cultural experience, Qamar defied the advice of her aunties almost every step of the way and she is here to remind you: Trust No Aunty. (From Touchstone)

Interviews

Pakistani-Canadian artist Maria Qamar is an Instagram smash hit for her pop-style paintings that pull in Pakistani aunties, Bollywood, and a razor-sharp sense of humour. 3:49
Maria Qamar has battled racism in school ever since moving to Canada from Pakistan as a young girl. Entering college, she assumed that everyone would have outgrown racism, until she met her roommate on campus. 32:56