Here at Time Out Kids, we can’t get enough of books, books, books – so you can imagine that the return of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature between March 6 and 10 is a pretty exciting time for us! This year, the Litfest promises to be bigger and better than ever before, but it’s not just for mum and dad: there’s a packed programme for children and young adults, with best-selling kids’ authors including Jacqueline Wilson, Kes Gray and Darren Shan, amazing workshops, a Fringe festival showcasing the region’s most talented kids, and not to forget our very own Time Out Kids Zone, too.
‘The idea behind the children’s programme is to actively encourage and promote a love of reading for all ages,’ explains Yvette Judge, Head of Education at the LitFest. ‘There is no better way of becoming hooked on books than by listening to a writer talk about their work at first hand, and our children’s authors are all enthusiastic about sharing their writing with as wide an audience as possible. Reading is the key to success and the Festival wants as many children as possible to have access to that key.’
It’s the perfect activity for all the family, too. ‘There are sessions for all ages and personal tastes,’ adds Christina Bruce, the LitFest’s Head of Communications. ‘And not just sessions. There are workshops, classes, food and refreshment outlets, indoor and outdoor activities the chance to browse the wonderful book selection and have them signed by your favourite authors. And don’t forget loads of these things are free!’
So what are you waiting for? Read on to find out what inspires some of our favourite authors at this year’s festival, plus a round up of some of the highlights of the children’s programme.
March 6-10, Al Mamzar and InterContinental Hotel, Dubai Festival City. Ticket prices vary (Fringe and Time Out Kids Zone are all free). Tickets available online at www.emirateslitfest.com, or instore at WHSmith, Oasis Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road. For the full line-up, visit www.emirateslitfest.com.