This post is also available in: العربية

The Sheikh Zayed Book Award has announced the signing of an agreement between Emirati publisher Al Hudhud and Italian publisher Marcos y Marcos, to translate Emirati author Hessa Al Muhairi’s The Dinoraf, winner of the Children’s Literature Category Award in 2018, into Italian, French and English.

The agreement follows a signing ceremony held in Abu Dhabi which was attended by Marco Zapparoli, Founding Director of Marcos y Marcos, Ali Al Shaali, Founding Director of Al Hudhud Publishing, the copyright holder of the Arabic version of The Dinoraf, and author Hessa Al Muhairi.

Dr. Ali Bin Tamim, Secretary-General of the Sheikh Zayed Book Award, said, “The Sheikh Zayed Book Award aims to encourage translations from Arabic into other languages through its translation fund initiative that was launched in 2018. The grant fund is an opportunity to highlight the active role of translation in fostering cultural communication and promoting quality Arabic literature, internationally.”

He added, “The translation of The Dinoraf into the Italian, French and English languages is an important milestone for the Award and for achieving our mandate in elevating the standard of children’s literature and establishing it on common values.”

Marco Zapparoli said, “I greatly enjoyed the unique character of the Dinoraf. As the first multilingual animal born in the desert, he is a brand new friend for the young readers in Italy. The author has crafted an inspiring story which engages children in meaningful conversations on universal values of tolerance and mutual coexistence. For that reason, Marcos y Marcos is proud to publish this book, and I believe it will be a great success.”

Ali Al Shaali said, “We are proud that Hessa Al Muhairi’s The Dinoraf won the Sheikh Zayed Book Award, which holds the name of our Founding Father. This is a major opportunity to introduce Arabic titles into different markets and reach new readers; whether they are Arabs living in Europe or Europeans, as we offer titles in Italian, French and English.”

The Dinoraf follows a dinosaur out on a mission to someone like him among the other animals. Throughout his journey, he gets to know the differences between the animals, which finally leads him to find a connection with the giraffe, to become the ‘Dinoraf’. The story is a unique portrayal of peaceful coexistence and mutual tolerance of cultural differences within a global society