This year’s Sharjah International Book Fair, which opens October 31, will see the launch of a Malayalam anthology of 60 Modern Arab Short Stories, ed. S.A. Qudsi:
According to Qudsi, there are “2.5 millions expatriate migrant workers from Kerala” and “90% of them are in the GCC countries, and the majority of these in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabua.”
This makes Sharjah — which is only a short drive from Dubai — a good place to launch his collection, which brings together 60 stories by 45 writers from 15 different countries.
Authors include Emirati writers Shihab Ghanim, Hareb Al Dhaheri, and Nassir al Dhahiri; Kuwaiti writers Laila Othman, Muna alShafie, and Talib Alrefai; Saudi writers Najath Khayyat and Mohammed Hasan Alwan; Bahraini writer Mahdi Abdulla, as well as authors from “Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon, Morocco, Libya, Iraq, Sudan and Yemen.”
The book is being published by Kerala’s Olive Publishers, which previously brought out 40 Arab Women’s Stories (40 Arabi Penn Kadhakal), ed. Qudsi, in 2016.
Qudsi noted that, “You find nearly a dozen Malayalam publishers in the international book exhibition centers of Sharjah and Abu Dhabi.” He said he has “no doubt that Malayalam bookselling [finds] a profitable market in the Gulf book fairs.”