Monday, November 19, 2012
BQFP publishes 1st official Arabic version of Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner
Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation Publishing announced today publication of the first official Arabic version of The Kite Runner, the phenomenally successful bestselling debut novel by US-based Afghan author Khaled Hosseini, in translation by Ehab Abdel Hamid. The Arabic title transliterates as Ada Al Taera Al Waraqeya.
Hosseini was born in the Afghan capital Kabul in 1965. After his family sought political asylum in US, he wrote The Kite Runner while practising medicine in Los Angeles. The Kite Runner was first published in 2003 by Riverhead Books, a division of Penguin Books USA. Riverhead is due to publish Hosseini's third novel, And the Mountains Echoed on 21 May 2013. Hosseini's second novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns was published by Riverhead in 2007.
Although Hosseini describes Farsi as his native tongue, he wrote The Kite Runner in English. He explains: "I invariably think in English when I sit down at the computer- these things just come naturally." The Kite Runner has been published in over seventy countries and was made into a critically acclaimed film directed by Marc Forster.
Set in Afghanistan in the 1970s, The Kite Runner tells the story of Amir, a well-to-do boy, and Hassan, his best friend and the son of his father’s servant. When Amir enters the local kite-flying tournament, he knows Hassan will do anything to help him win, but neither of the boys knows what will happen that day, or how it will change their lives forever. The Kite Runner has sold over twenty million copies and in 2011 it was adapted into a graphic novel, published in English and Arabic by Bloomsbury and Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation Publishing. The Arabic translation was carried out by bestselling Egyptian author Ahmed Khaled Towfik, whose novel Utopia was published by BQFP in English translation.
Previously The Kite Runner itself has only ever been published in Arabic in unofficial, unapproved editions. BQFP says that this new translation by Ehab Abdel Hamid marks "a new chapter in the book’s history by bringing it to a new, alert and eager audience."
Following its publication of the official Arabic edition of The Kite Runner, BQFP is due in March 2013 to publish Ehab Abdel Hamid's translation of A Thousand Splendid Suns, which was a New York Times bestseller.