Mai al-Nakib Wins Edinburgh International Book Festival’s 2014 First Book Award

Arabic Literature (in English)

Kuwaiti author Mai Al-Nakib has won the Edinburgh International Book Festival’s 2014 “First Book Award” for her debut short-story collection The Hidden Light of Objects:

The Hidden Light - Mai Al-Nakib 3 Kuwait LaunchThe results of the festival’s First Book Award were announced yesterday.

Al-Nakib’s collection — the first collection of short stories to take the five-year-old prize — competed against forty-five other novels and collections. According to the book fest’s website, “Every debut novelist and every overseas writer whose words are published in English for the first time is included in the award, along with a selection of young adult fiction.” The authors also must have participated in that year’s Edinburgh book festival.

The prize is judged not by a panel, but by readers. More than 2,200 readers’ votes were received this year by the closing date.

In a prepared release, Book Festival Director Nick Barley said:

This is an extraordinarily moving and assured debut collection depicting…

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