The two children’s book authors who got the most attention on the “star line-up” unveiled yesterday by Emirates Lit Fest organizers were English-language authors Anthony Browne and Emily Gravett.
However, the festival also promises to bring in Arabic children’s authors and publishers, including Latifa Al Najar (Managing Director of the UAE-based Dar Al Alam Al Arabi, who also spoke at the Sharjah festival), Lebanese writers Tariq Al Bakry and Abir Ballan (author of أنا و بابا and more), and Sheikh Zayed award-winner Hooda Shawa Qaddumi.
Festival organizers promise to add more authors in the coming months. Other Arabic-language stars I’d like to see include Walid, Rania, Taghreed, Qais, Fatima, and Samar. I think Qais, in particular, is quite a good presenter. (Of course, since I’m due on March 1, it doesn’t seem likely I’ll make a March 8-12 festival. But I do hope to follow online!)