the younger sibling of the prestigious 30-year-old annual Sharjah International Book Fair, the Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival launched an international author strand.
Already established as a favourite annual fixture for authors across the Arab world, this year 10 authors from the UK, South Africa and India joined authors from Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Kuwait, The Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen and of course, the UAE.
Throughout the 10 days, the festival offered a variety of events to promote enthusiasm for reading, books and creative writing. From cookery to creative writing, poetry to illustration there are over 150 events planned to entice and enthuse an entirely new generation of readers.
The international authors taking part alongside the Arabic authors were Nick Arnold, Steve Cole, Githa Hariharan, Janey Louise Jones, Liz Kessler, Carol Pastor (cook), Rose Prince (cook), Jeeva Raghunath, Lauren St John and Chris White.
Illustration and Illustrators were firmly positioned centre stage as a truly global Illustrators’ feature has been launched. The Sharjah Exhibition for Children’s Book Illustrations displayed professional drawings of children’s books and stories from Emirat, Arab and International Artists. This exhibition is supported by an illustrators’ handbook and directory.
In the new children’s book The Adventures of McGarvey and Lucky (published by AuthorHouse), author Mary L Hennessy tells the charming story of a day in the life of two playful dogs. In The Adventures of McGarvey and Lucky young readers meet McGarvey, a Scottish Terrier, and Lucky, a Cockapoo. Hennessy takes readers through the canines’ day, from naps and ball-chasing to mealtimes and bath times. Hennessy, who based her characters off of her real-life pets, uses home photos in place of illustration. An enthusiastic pet owner, she hopes The Adventures of McGarvey and Lucky ushers in a new generation of animal lovers. Targeted to readers aged 4 – 7, the picture book features simple vocabulary and easy storytelling.
Random House Children’s Books will now be the primary book publisher of Nickelodeon properties, as announced jointly by Chip Gibson, president and publisher of Random House Children’s Books, and Paula K Allen, senior vice president, Nickelodeon Global Publishing. Beginning spring 2013, the publishing programme with Nickelodeon will expand to include a variety of new formats, including hardcover and paperback picture books, storybooks, leveled readers, chapter books, junior novels, and board books. Random House will continue publishing the coloring and activity books and Little Golden Book titles published since 2000 and 2009, respectively. These books are based on Nickelodeon properties, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Team Umizoomi, and Bubble Guppies.
New children's book I Love You Baby Deer (Brown Books Publishing Group), by former elementary school teacher Linda Gilleland in Uvalde, Texas offers young readers an eye-opening look inside the magnificent power of love. Beautifully illustrated by Leigh Ann Irish, I Love You Baby Deer tells the touching true story of how love, friendship, and trust blossomed between a beautiful young girl, Grace, and the orphaned baby deer she and her family took in and named Pineapple. Although a personal story, the reality that Grace and Pineapple eventually have to say good-bye teaches readers the painful and beautiful lesson of letting go.
Padduram, a movie about a story of Debashish Mehra aka Debu who has a flatulence problem is the directorial debut of Ajay Moga, writer of films like Fashion and Corporate. Rachit Sidana, the child actor who essays the lead role of Padduram, threw a lot of tantrums for launching the book series on the same.
It was only when Moga stepped in and his company Creative Keedaaz along with Sandeep Kaushik of Macaw Books decided to launch the Padduram series of books – a venture which would take the concept of Padduram to the next level.
Chief guest, the Big Boss 5 winner Juhi Parmar, along with Rachit were present during the book launch to do the honours. Juhi shared the concept of movie with the audience and said, “Our film Padduram tries to tell the world that there is nothing to feel shy about having a flatulence problem. It will be a big hit among the kids and launching a book series is just a right decision.”
The average age of authors is decreasing. Here’s a book from 13-year-old Anivarya Kumar, titled Two Lives One Decision, which is about a girl who is killed by a serial killer. The girl experiences rebirth and in her second life she is able to go back in time to get revenge on her killer.
The book is available on Kindle and Amazon as an e-book or a paperback and will soon be available on Nook and Apple devices.
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