Sharjah: Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) opens on Wednesday, offering access to 15 million books, top authors, celebrities, chefs and activities for children.
The 40th edition of the free-to-attend SIBF runs until November 13 at Expo Centre Sharjah, from 10am to 10pm (Fridays 4pm to 11pm).
- The books from some 1,600 publishing houses this year include 1.3 million “unique titles” from around the world, including 110,000 making their debut at SIBF.
-Participating for the first time are nine countries: Colombia, South Sudan, Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
-Book Guides – volunteers who are experts in reading, writing and all things publishing – will help visitors choose books they like
-Self-payment machines at hall entrances for speedy checkout, as well as payment by digital wallets
- New official SIBF mobile app, called ‘Sibf’ on Google Play Store and Apple Store. The app offers users access to the fair’s programmes, including sessions, workshops, shows, publishers’ list and the books on display. It also enables users to plan a schedule and receive notifications about the timing of the sessions they wish to attend.
-Spain is the ‘Guest of Honour’ country this year. Spanish literature, culture and shows will be held at the Spain pavilion. The programme includes a session led by writers of the hit Netflix series Money Heist — Javier Gomez Santander and Diego Avalos.
The guest list includes American real-life rags-to-riches story Chris Gardner, Nobel Prize for Literature winner Abdul Razak Gurnah, and award-winning Indian novelist Amitav Ghosh.
Fourteen awarding-wining authors, journalists and social media stars from India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will also take part, among many others from the Arab world and Western countries.
Dh1.2 million award
Sixteen titles of 14 authors representing 11 publishers from six Arab countries have been shortlisted for the 13th edition of the Dh1.2 million ‘Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature’, organised by the UAE Board on Books for Young People and supported by the Etisalat Group.
The winners of the award will be announced at a ceremony held during SIBF 2021.
‘Cultural Personality of the Year’
This year’s ‘Cultural Personality of the Year’ for the upcoming Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) is Kuwaiti novelist and short story writer Taleb Al Refai.
From photography to arts, more than 40 workshops on diverse interests will be held. The workshops will be part of the ‘Kids programme’ featuring 355 activities and shows. The workshops will be led by experts from nine countries for children of all ages.
Celebrity chefs from 10 countries, including those who have prepared meals for world leaders, are set to hold live cooking sessions.
A line-up of 11 celebrity chefs including restaurateurs, television hosts and authors of best-selling cookery books, will be sharing their expertise and demonstrating their culinary skills through 30 live cooking sessions.
The masterclasses hosted by the internationally-renowned chefs and experts are part of the fair’s popular ‘Cookery Corner’ programme.
Featuring chefs who have cooked for heads of states and the royalty, this year’s participating include: Kunal Kapur (India), Judy Joo (Korean-American), Sherson Lian (Malaysia), Lina Saad (Lebanon), Roaya Saleh (Bahrain), Zina Abboud, (Syrian - Dutch), Malakeh Jazmati (Syria), Shonali Sabherwal (India), Ravneet Gill (UK), Becky Excell (UK), and Camila Loew (Spain).