Sharjah is guest of honour at 2022 Bologna Children’s Book Fair: Emirati authors and illustrators to represent the UAE

The annual event is one of the largest of its kind dedicated to international children’s literature

SHARJAH , UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – Nov 4 , 2015 : People browsing the books at the book stalls on the first day of Sharjah International Book Fair at Expo Centre in Sharjah. ( Pawan Singh / The National ) For News *** Local Caption ***  PS0411- BOOK FAIR02.jpg

Sharjah will be the guest of honour at the 2022 Bologna Children’s Book Fair.

Running from March 21 to March 24 in the northern Italian city, the event is one of the largest such events dedicated to international children's literature.

In addition to a large pavilion run by the Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), a delegation of 10 Emirati children’s and young adult fiction authors and illustrators will appear at the festival for book signings and panel discussions.

Some of those making the trip include authors Noura Al Noman and Dubai Abulhoul, illustrator Marwa Obeid and academic Reem Al Gurg.

Italian-translated books by Emirati authors will be launched at the fair, in addition to a range of workshops and networking sessions featuring UAE and international publishers.

According to SBA chairman Ahmed Al Ameri, Sharjah’s standing as guest of honour is a testament to the emirate’s investment in children's literature.

He cites the success of publishing house Kalimat Group, launched in 2007 and run by International Publishers Association president Bodour Al Qasimi, for raising standards and stimulating demand for the genre across the region.

“There has been an impressive growth in this sector as several new publishing houses for children’s books have opened across the region,” he said.

Book fairs back on track

The news comes as more international and regional book fairs return with in-person activities.

The world's biggest book fair, Germany's Frankfurter Buchmesse, announced its return from Wednesday, October 20 to Sunday, October 24. While it ran a digital-only programme in 2020, this year's fair will feature a hybrid blend of online and physical events at the Frankfurt Trade Fair Grounds.

This month, the Cairo International Book Fair will take place from Wednesday, June 30 to Thursday, July 15 at the Egypt International Exhibition Centre.

epa07871847 Visitors look at children's books presented at the 19th Amman  International Book Fair, in Amman, Jordan, 26 September 2019. The event opened its doors on 26 September and is due to last until 05 October, featuring publishers from the Arab world with their own books in Arabic and English as well as non-Arabic publications they import. The 19th edition's guest of honor is Tunisia.  EPA-EFE/AMEL PAIN *** Local Caption *** 55498029

Jordan's Amman International Book Fair is also back on this year's calendar.

The annual event, which cancelled its 2020 programme because of the pandemic, will run from Wednesday, September 22 to Saturday, October 2 within the halls of Amman International Motor Show.

Meanwhile, in March, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan announced on Twitter that the Riyadh International Book Fair will take place from Friday, October 1 to Sunday, October 10.

Both the Abu Dhabi and the Sharjah book fairs ran safe and successful events in May this year and last November, respectively.

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Read more:

Where books matter: The Abu Dhabi International Book Fair is a haven for UAE culture lovers

'From Women to the World': powerful letters by female Arab activists among new anthology

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