Unfortunately, although I have read The Time Travels of the Man Who Sold Pickles and Sweets (and may, who knows, re-read it along with the Arabic), I cannot enthuse about it or claim that I dashed with delight through the prose.
Like fellow IPAF longlistee Bensalem Himmich, Khairy Shalaby is a widely-known author and a former winner of the Naguib Mahfouz prize.
As predicted, this year's International Prize for Arabic Fiction ("Arabic Booker") longlist has more women than in previous years. This year's longlist is nearly 50-50, with 7 women and 9 men.
I do hope that Khairy Shalaby has success with the English translation of his The Time-Travels of the Man Who Sold Pickles and Sweets (1991), due out this fall from AUC Press. It was translated by Michael Cooperson.