LitFest Day 1
An interactive session in progress on the opening day of Emirates Airline Festival of Literature in Dubai on Friday. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The launch of a new collection of children’s stories, My Little World, by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, will be celebrated at an event under Emirates Airline Festival of Literature on Friday.

The event will feature readings from the collection in Arabic and English, a special message from Shaikh Mohammad, and a lucky dip giving 15 lucky children their own box set. The bilingual event, which is primarily intended for children aged between six and nine and their families, is open to the public and tickets are available free of charge from It will take place at 4.30pm on Friday at InterContinental Dubai Festival City in a purpose-built outdoor venue by the creek (Al Riwaq 2).

Visitors browse through books at Emirates Airline Festival of Literature that started in Dubai on Friday. Image Credit: Supplied

Childhood experiences of Dubai Ruler

Launched by the Government of Dubai Media Office (GDMO), My Little World is a collection of five stories by Shaikh Mohammad based on his childhood experiences. Blending absorbing storytelling with insightful observations on human relationships, learning and the natural world, Sheikh Mohammad recounts incidents and interactions in his early life that played a key role in shaping his outlook and character.

Power of stories

Nehal Badri, director of Brand Dubai, the creative arm of GDMO, said: “[Shaikh Mohammad’s] collection of children’s stories reflects His Highness’s keenness to engage with the younger generation and uplift, inspire and guide them with his remarkable life stories. The collection also highlights his vision to foster a culture of reading in the region, which continues to motivate youth across the Arab world and beyond to advance knowledge and learning. The event at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature will be a fitting tribute to the power of stories while the readings will serve to revitalise the oral storytelling traditions that have been an integral part of the region’s culture.”

Values for the next generation

Ahlam Bolooki, director of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, said: “We are honoured to host an event to release this wonderful book at our Festival. The themes of these stories will resonate with all children, and we have created an event that brings them to life. Vision, courage, dedication and hard work are values that we all want for the next generation, and we know there is no better way to inspire children than through stories. With such a special event, we expect exceptionally high demand for tickets so do book early.”

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Isobel Abulhoul, CEO and Trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation, will do a reading of the stories in English while Bolooki will do a reading of the stories in Arabic. There will be 15 box sets given away to lucky children at the event, as well as a fully stocked book shop where the both the box set and the individual books will be available to purchase in Arabic and English.

Following the opening weekend at Jameel Arts Centre (January 29-30), the big middle weekend will be at the festival’s home, the InterContinental Dubai Festival City (February 4-6), to be followed by more events at Alserkal Avenue (February 12-13).