Khyrunnisa A. is an Indian author and columnist known popularly for her children’s fiction, especially the book series – Butterfingers. The 13-year-old Amar Kishen aka “Butterfingers” was first penned by her as just a comic-strip character in the children’s magazine Tinkle in 2006. But its immense popularity encouraged her to expand the idea into a book series, starting with Howzzat Butterfingers!

Khyrunnisa grew up in Trivandrum, where she resides currently with her husband, and calls herself a “naturalised Trivandrumite”.

“I was the youngest in a family of eight children. We were all readers and thus I was in a house surrounded by books. In the evenings we used to share with each other what our day was like. My eldest sister particularly, was a great storyteller,” she reminisces.

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She fondly recollects that, like most kids, she loved school stories and grew up on the books of authors like Enid Blyton and Angela Brazil.

She loved reading and writing since her childhood and says that teaching had always been one of her ambitions. She taught as an Associate Professor at All Saints’ College, Trivandrum, but had never planned on becoming a writer back then. She calls herself an “accidental writer” as she takes a walk down the memory lane and reflects on her writing career.

Khyrunnisa has a huge fan following, amongst children and adults alike, including renowned figures such as Ruskin Bond, Shashi Tharoor, V.V.S. Laxman and Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi!      

The latest of her books, Smash it, Butterfingers! was published in July 2021. Apart from the Butterfinger series, Khyrunnisa has penned four other children’s books, a book for the adults and contributed to several anthologies as well.

By Bharath