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United Arab Emirates: Children’s books among best sellers at Al Ain Book Festival – News

The seven-day Al Ain Book Festival was organized by the Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre. — Photos supplied

Published: Saturday, November 25, 2023, 7:59 p.m.

Publishers and authors who participated in the seven-day Al Ain Book Festival noted that there has been increased awareness among parents to foster a reading culture among children.

This year’s edition, held under the theme ‘All eyes on Al Ain’, offered more than 60,000 book titles presented by 150 exhibitors, all in a cultural atmosphere organized in nine key locations from Al Ain city to Saturday.

According to participating publishers, children’s books topped the best-seller list at the festival organized by the Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Center (ALC), followed by novels, educational, history and heritage books.

Leading publishers and young authors shared their experiences with Khaleej Times on a renewed focus on reading, children’s books and supporting emerging local talents.

“We have recently witnessed a significant decline in the level of Arabic language proficiency among children. “Parents are now aware of the danger this poses to their children’s future and their disconnection from the Arabic language and culture,” said Dr. Ahmed Farajallah, director of Bibliosmia House Publishing and Distribution, founded by his father in Dubai ago. 35 years.

According to the editors, parents want to promote the culture of reading among children.

According to the editors, parents want to promote the culture of reading among children.

“Consequently, they have encouraged their children to improve their Arabic reading and writing skills, which, in turn, created greater demand for children’s books and edutainment content designed to improve Arabic language skills, as well as a resurgence in demand for paper books. Dr. Farajallah said, adding that his publishing house presented a collection of books written by young Emirati authors. Amira Hassan, an author, said she had written stories since her childhood. Four years ago, she began working toward her dream of becoming a published author. Now, with the support of Bibliosmia, she has four books on self-development to her name.

This year's festival had the theme 'All Eyes on Al Ain'.

This year’s festival had the theme ‘All Eyes on Al Ain’.

Mehyar Ali Kurdi, General Director of Publishing and Distribution of Mominoun Sin Fronteras, observed a revitalization of the publishing sector and book sales.

“Mominoun Without Borders presents a special heritage book published for the festival, titled ‘Completing the Missing History of Al Ain’. “We have pioneering experience in publishing in the UAE and there is a growing demand for books due to the growing awareness among the population as well as the growing purchasing power of individuals.”

Among the participating publishers was Dar Ramsa Publishing and Distribution, which presented its specialized publications focused on teaching and promoting Emirati culture and dialect among expatriates in the country, as well as Emirati children whose parents are interested in teach them their culture and their dialect.

Dar Ramsa presented the book ‘figurative expressions about the body in the Emirati dialect’, which explains Emirati words and popular proverbs in the English language.

Abdullah Al Kaabi, director of Dar Ramsa, said: “There are books on Emirati heritage translated into 11 international languages, all aimed at wide dissemination of Emirati culture. There are also children’s stories written in Emirati dialect, which are popular and widely circulated among people of various nationalities interested in learning about Emirati culture.”

Dar Shms, which specializes in children’s and youth literature, participated with 12 interesting stories written by Emirati children between 8 and 13 years old, in addition to another collection of stories written by author Haya Al Qasim, director of Dar Shms.

“I discovered notable talents while participating in several writing workshops for children. With that in mind, I have made Dar Shms a space to foster talents professionally. Today we have 12 Emirati writers who focus on various topics, including sustainability, heritage and Emirati customs,” Al Qasim added.

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