Sponsored: The best two weekends of the year for fans of books, art, food and more…

Emirates Literature Festival is back next month running from February 3 to 13 at Habtoor City hotels. Bibliophiles will of course love this event, but… there’s plenty to do and see for everyone.

Here’s why everyone should visit the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature

For movie buffs


What do The Godfather, Jurassic Park and Lord of the Rings have in common? They were all books before they made it to the big screen. The list now includes Netflix hit TV show Bridgerton, and House of Gucci and you can meet these authors at the festival. Julia Quinn will be sharing her favourite moments from behind the scenes on the Bridgerton set and journalist Sara Gay Forden will be dishing out the inside scoop on The House of Gucci, and its adaptation to the big screen.


For foodies


Nadiya Hussain, winner of The Great British Bake Off and mental health campaigner will be returning to the festival and Italy’s most famous TV Chef Alessandro Borghese is hosting an exclusive dinner featuring recipes inspired by his latest book Cacio & Pepe. 

Love Charles Dickens? Meet his great-great-great-granddaughter, Lucinda Dickens Hawksley on the occasion of Dickens’ 210th birthday. The ticket to Miss Havisham’s Wedding: Lucinda Dickens Hawksley will get you a three-course dinner plus plenty of insights into the women of Charles Dickens’s life and work.

Desert Stanzas features an evening of poetry in the desert with first-class Emirati hospitality and one you don’t want to miss.

For art fans

Art is pretty and pretty subjective. From a banana being taped to a wall to an invisible sculpture, a McDonald’s brown paper bag at Jameel Arts Centre right here in Dubai and much more – contemporary art exists to confuse. Here to bring some clarity, is Jessica Cerasi who will be stressing what makes art contemporary, why it’s so expensive, and what and who it’s for.

For a different kind of art – popular Anime superstar, Ken Arto – the illustrator of Deon Slayer and Jujutsu Kaisen will be at the festival with his popular art.

Fumio Obata who is the creator of Just So Happens will join Dubai-based author, Avni Doshi who penned Burnt Sugar to discuss what it takes to capture the touch, taste, sight, sound and smell of the real world with words.

For little ones


Children of all ages will have something to do at the event. Nadiya Hussain’s session will help children face their fear, Ben Bailey Smith will explore how far is too far to go for laughs, and Rob Biddulph’s interactive session ‘Dog Gone’ promises to be hilarious.

Want to attend? Tickets are available here, starting from Dhs40 for children’s sessions and Dhs65 for adult’s sessions.

Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, Al Habtoor City, Feb 3 to 13, Dhs65 per adult, Dhs40 per child. Tel: (0)4 355 9844. emirateslitfest.com