(At least) two Arabic YA novels were released in 2010: Fatima Sharafeddine’s فاتن, which came out at the Sharjah International Book Fair in October, and Samah Idris’s فلافل النازحين, released at Beirut’s December fair.
I was also able to pick up, this year, Idris’s 2005 novel الملجأ, and his 2006 النصأب. I have not seen any of the YA novels recently published by Palestine’s Tamer Institute.
Several translations also appeared this year, including an Arabic translation of Randa Abdel-Fattah’s Where the Streets Had a Name (from Bloomsbury-Qatar) and J.C. Michaels’ Firebelly (from Al-Balsam Books).
I have not yet been able to get my sticky paws on فلافل النازحين, so perhaps it’s a little silly to declare a “favorite” in the YA category when the contest pool was one. However, it was legitimately a favorite:
I think this is a particular breaththrough stylistically, as the book maintains its clarity and simplicity while still dealing with subject matter (love, career, hopes, war) in a way that’s engaging for older readers, 12 or 13+.
I look forward to reading more from both Idris and Sharafeddine, and seeing a coming surge of high-quality, high-interest Arabic YA.