Once a tiny minority in Arabic literature, science fiction, horror and thrillers are getting a boost: Al Jazeera
At the end of April, the International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF) turned seven years old. That’s when the prize named its eighth winner: the acclaimed Frankenstein in Baghdad, by Iraqi author Ahmed Saadawi.
As is tradition, Saadawi’s win was announced on the eve of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, which ran from April 29-May 5. This year’s announcement was met by cheers in the Hilton ballroom and echoingdelight across social media. Saadawi was the first Iraqi to take the prize and fellow Iraqis were particularly happy. When the fair opened the next morning, copies of the winning novel sold briskly. Read more
Ahmed Saadawi becomes first Iraqi to win the ‘Arabic Booker’ for Frankenstein in Baghdad: The Guardian
Success for ‘what’s-its-name’ … Ahmad Saadawi accepting the IPAF
Iraqi novelist Ahmed Saadawi has won the Arab world’s most prestigious prize, the International prize for Arabic fiction, beating five other writers from around the Arab world.
Thousands, or perhaps tens of thousands, waited on the IPAF announcement, which was a highlight of the Abu Dhabi festival this week. Some thought Syrian novelist Khaled Khalifa’s grim No Knives in the Kitchens of This City would take the prize, and many were rooting for popular Egyptian novelist Ahmed Mourad’s Blue Elephant.
Syrian writer Khaled Khalifa, a veteran opponent of the ruling Baath party, has won the Naguib Mahfouz literature prize from the American University in Cairo, organizers said on Thursday.
The novelist told AFP by telephone from Damascus that he was happy to receive the award, but said his joy was “incomplete because of the severe and arbitrary measures imposed on Syrians in Egypt”.
He was referring to the 325,000 Syrian refugees now in Egypt after fleeing the conflict in their homeland.