The International “Arab” fair is different from the International “French” book fair, which took place earlier in the year.
I think someone should’ve told Michael Luongo, who’s there to promote the Arabic-language version of his Gay Travels in the Muslim World. On the Huffington Post, he calls his first day a success (although he was a little surprised at the lack of English- or French-language directions around the fair; fortunately he ran into a young Muhammad who helped him around).
I am extremely pleased that he’s getting a warm reception. I have all my digits crossed that it continues.
In “Publishing Perspectives,” Yasmina Jraissati urges a single book fair, to unite French- and Arab-reading publics, rather than two fairs to divide an already (sub)divided nation.
In any case, the International (Arab) Fair will go through Christmas Eve. The Independence ’05 blog has photos of various authors and exhibits, and snippets about them. It particularly focuses on Dar Onboz’s efforts in children’s literacy (and the joy of language). Booyah to that, Dar Onboz.
Luongo will probably continue to blog about his experiences, particularly after his reading on the 22nd. He also promises to stop by an unnamed bookstore in Cairo. Hmm. Kotob Khan?
Also: Balconies, a memoir by Mishka Mojabber Mourani, is discussed on the Huff Post; it’s also being promoted at the fair.