"The driver went quiet for a while then asked, ‘Do you think there’ll be another war?’"
'Dog War II's' IPAF win "has gotten relatively wide coverage in the English press—certainly more than most IPAF winners hitherto—largely because its keywords hit so many hot-topic buttons, with ‘dystopia,’ ‘sci-fi,’ ‘extremism,’ and ‘Arab world’ emerging as the most popular thus far."
"Ibrahim Nasrallah’s novel paints a chilling picture of humanity in all its destructive potential."
"The winner of the 2018 International Prize for Arabic Fiction is set to be announced at a ceremony at the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr in Abu Dhabi this evening."
The novel has been vibrantly and compellingly translated by Jonathan Wright, and is forthcoming from Hoopoe Fiction at the end of July.
"I worked on the idea of fear because people in Syria -- or any other country that's under such a regime -- are not only afraid of the regime, they are afraid of being afraid. It's a condition that precedes the fear, meaning people are afraid because they are going to be afraid, and I worked from that point."
By giving Ali al-Najdi a voice, al-Refai introduces the readers to the man behind the sea-faring legend.
"The last thing I need is that people read me because my book is forbidden. I need people to read it because they want to read it."
English translations of two of the shortlisted books are already forthcoming: Shahad al-Rawi's The Baghdad Clock is set to appear this summer from OneWorld, in Luke Leafgren's translation, while Dima Wannous's The Frightened Ones is forthcoming from Harvill Secker, in Elisabeth Jaquette's translation, in 2019.
The central theme of “K.” is much stronger than most literature coming from the Gulf.
CORRECTION: The 2008 longlist is not on the International Prize for Arabic Fiction website (English, Arabic) and was, I'm told, sent to journalists after the shortlist was released in 2008. However, a journalist-novelist has now sent along a copy of the 2008 longlist.
"Today, the headlines of the parallel dimension from which I write are overflowing with the news that IPAF has longlisted Djamila Morani’s gripping novella 'Tuffa7 al-djinn' ('The Djinn’s Apple')."