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Local Tale Chosen for World Book Day 2018 by HBKU Press

Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press (HBKU Press) aims to highlight Qatari authors and their culture by providing a platform for their stories. 

‘Sultan Al Baher’ as Book of World Book Day 2018!

The book Sultan Al Baher is based on traditional stories passed down from generation to generation explaining the legend of how the sail was invented in Qatar. Shaikha Al Zeyara, an established Qatari author, recounts the famous legend of May, the daughter of the naval fleet commander Shahin, and the clever sailor Ghilan, and the newly-discovered sail at his disposal. Complimentary copies of the book will be distributed to schools in celebration of World Book Day 2018. To purchase your own copy, check the local bookstore near you!

New Releases 

Qandil Alma

Qandil Alma (Alma’s Lantern) is a poignant tale about the importance of never losing hope no matter how dark the path before you may seem. As Alma travels down the dark and rugged road to her house, she faces many difficulties to the point of despair. But as she navigates the forest, she finds light in her determination and courage to keep moving forward despite her struggles. Her journey through the darkness, lit by stars and over dams on bridges built of hope, mirrors the ups and downs that we all encounter on the journey of life.

The Blue Between Sky and Water (left) and Bitter Almonds in Arabic

Award-winning and critically-acclaimed novels by Lilas TahaBitter Almonds, and Susan AbulhawaThe Blue Between Sky and Water, are now available in Arabic.

Al Nakous wa Al-Mi’thana

The captivating novel Al Nakous wa Al-Mi’thana unfolds in the philosophical world of Walid, a young man whose passion for cinema made him yearn to travel to France, to study and produce films that personify his questions about religion, life, loss and isolation. His dreams of escaping his mundane life were suddenly shattered when he got implicated in the murder of a Christian priest. The events unfold into a seemingly endless adventure, within an environment where religions and nationalities co-exist, social relations are intertwined, and the strange story of Father Dominique was revealed.

How to be an Ironman

In April 2016, Dr Nasser Saqer Al-Mohannadi became one of the first Qataris ever to complete a full Ironman race. He swam 3.8 km, biked 180 km and ran 42.2 km on one of the most difficult Ironman courses in the world. It was the fulfillment of a childhood dream and of 28 years of preparation and training. He said he wrote the book, How to be an Ironman, to share his experiences, his trials and tribulations.

World Book Day 2018

HBKU Press has organised a full week of book readings from 22 – 26 April at many schools across Qatar in celebration of World Book Day 2018. HBKU Press will host Hakaya Maraya on 22 April where experts will advise attendees on best practices when constructing tales for children.

Authors interested to get published under HBKU Press are also invited to submit a copy of their manuscript to All submissions should come with a brief biography of the author and a synopsis of the entire work.

For more information and updates about HBKU Press, visit their website at

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