Children's Authors and Activities at Emirates Literature Festival 2021 |

Children's Authors Not to Miss at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature

Kids will be spoiled for choice of books, authors, influential figures, and activities at the 2021 Emirates Literature Festival

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3 January 2021

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Children's Authors Not to Miss at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature

Festival programmes will be available in a mix of onsite and livestreamed sessions.

It's fun for the whole family at this year's edition of the highly anticipated Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, taking place from January 29 - February 13, 2021 across three venues in Dubai: Jameel Arts Centre, InterContinental Dubai, and Alserkal Avenue.

The three-weekend annual celebration of all written and spoken word will welcome dozens of authors and speakers, among which feature local and international writers and names to educate and entertain visitors from little ones to young adults.

For children, here are our top picks from the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature's lineup:

For the kids looking for something unexpected...

Expect mischief and mayhem as British actor, rapper, comedian and screenwriter Ben Bailey Smith, aka Doc Brown brings his hip character from 'I am Bear' and 'Bear Moves' to Dubai, conjured up by bold illustrations from Sav Akyüz, as they invite everyone to join in the dance moves of this hilarious purple bear.

‘Are cats liquid or solid?’ is just one of the silly questions asked by award-winning scientist Isabel Thomas who shows that when it comes to science, silly questions can lead to serious science, in her highly interactive sessions guaranteed to be gallons of fun.

UAE families' favourite Magic Phil will be bringing his own brand of festival fun over at Alserkal Avenue.

For the kids who read...

Little fans of Julia Johnson will be in for a treat at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature. The children’s author, audiobook voice actor, and storyteller wrote more than 25 books, including her award-winning novels 'The Turtle Secret' and 'The Secret of the Cave.

Her latest story, 'Where Is Everyone', was written to encourage children to talk about their feelings and anxiety in a life disrupted by Covid-19. The story follows a group of familiar, puzzled Middle Eastern animals during the 2020 pandemic who are trying to figure out where all the humans have disappeared to.

Kids at the festival will delight in the tales from Syrian writer and director Obada Takla, the creator of 'I am an Emirati Child' and 'Puppets’ Girl', which won the My Book Award in 2017.

Children can revel in the epic tales of 'The Battle of Antara Bin Shaddad', the 'Scheherazade’s Story' series and 'An Unexpected Visit' with Lebanese children's writer Sanaa Chabbani.

For the young adults...

It's not just children - big kids can also chat with Sanaa Chabbani. Sanaa has given several specialised workshops on writing children’s and YA literature, held many workshops for school students and participated in cultural projects in Lebanon to promote a culture of reading within her community.

Young Adult writer Zayed Al Marzooqi and Ameera BuKadra, an Emirati author for children and young adults, will also be spotted at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature.

The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai.

For the full list of authors, visit

Montegrappa Letter Writing Competition

Montegrappa Letter Writing Competition 2021

The fine art of letter writing is to be celebrated by the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and Montegrappa in a brand new competition that is elevating penmanship to its rightful place as a treasured art form.

The competition is open to children, which is divided into the following categories:

  • Primary: Ages 9 - 13
  • Secondary: Ages 14 – 18

How to join

Letters should be written on a single A4 side of paper, be no more than 200 words long and handwritten using a fountain pen or any other type of ink pen, such as a rollerball or ball point pen.

Entries can be in Arabic or English.

The deadline for these two age groups is 8 November 2020.

The winners of the primary and secondary categories will each receive a special Montegrappa fountain pen from the Ambiente collection which is made with a special resin created from recycled materials, in collaboration with artisanal studio Smile Plastics.

For tips on letter writing, terms and conditions and to enter the competition, click here.

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