Palestinian author and storyteller receives prestigious Arabic literature award

Cover of Wonder Travels in Mysterious Lands by Sonia Nimr. The cover is made by Lubna Taha.

Cover of Wonder Travels in Mysterious Lands by Sonia Nimr. The cover is made by Lubna Taha.

Sonia Nimr, Palestinian author and storyteller, was announced as this year’s recipient of the 2014 Etisalat Award for Arabic Children’s Literature, one of the most important and prestigious award for children’s literature in the Arab world, for her young adults book “Wonderful Trips in the Mysterious World”. The book “creates a world of fantasy with a touch of reality, where she brings back the dreams of travelling around the world, and challenges stereotypes through her heroine “Qamar”, where readers spend a long journey with her crossing dangerous oceans and deserts.”

It was published last year by the 2009 ALMA Laureate Tamer Institute for Community Education, who distributed to over 1200 public and school libraries inside Palestine. Discussion circles were organized around the book in at least 100 of the libraries. According to Tamer Institute, the book was very well received by the librarians:

One librarian adds “once received the book, I read it and was sure that young adults will love it and I was right. The book is now listed among the most read at my library, and for a while it was wondering among young adults before it finally returned back to the shelve”. Another librarian discussed the book with young adults and had to say “during the discussion, young adults related to the extent which imagination is introducing realistic social life within the book. They also related to the complex within the book, where Qamar the protagonist was sold as a slave and how she had to confront by starting her travel. They were amazed by her persistence to continue despite the everlasting hardships she had to face”.

Congratulations to both Sonia Nimr and Tamer Institute!

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