The Sharjah International Book Fair, SIBF, has announced that 13 Arab novelists, including winners and nominees of the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, Arabic Booker, over the past seven years, will participate in cultural and intellectual seminars and evenings organised by SIBF for its 33rd edition, which will take place from 5th-15th November at Expo Centre Sharjah.
The list of Arabic Booker winners includes renowned Egyptian novelist and historian, Yousuf Zidan, who won the Arabic Booker for his well-known novel ‘Azazeel’ in 2009. Zidan’s novel ‘The Nabatean’ was also on the long list for the fifth edition of the Arabic Booker Prize in 2012.
Among the SIBF guests there will also be a number of the most prominent Arab novelists, whose novels were on the shortlist for the 2014 Arabic Booker Prize. They include Moroccan writer Youssef Fadel, author of ‘A Rare Blue Bird that Flies with Me’, Ahmed Mourad from Egypt, author of ‘The Blue Elephant’, and Iraq's Inaam Kachachi, author of ‘Tashari’. It is the second time for Kachachi to have one of her novels shortlisted after her novel ‘The American Grandmother’ in 2009.
Jordanian critic Fakhri Saleh, who was a member of the jury of the 2nd edition in 2009, will participate in one of the cultural seminars hosted by the Sharjah International Book Fair.
Launched in Abu Dhabi in 2007, the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, also known Arabic Booker Prize, is one of the most prestigious awards in the Arab world. It is run in partnership with the British Booker Prize Foundation in London with the support of the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and aims to solidify the presence of unique Arabic novels globally.
The prize’s judging panel consists of five experts, including critics, novelists, and academics from the Arab world and beyond. The judges are tasked with selecting the nominated titles and announcing the final winner in May of each year.