Literary Lunch – Wafa’ Tarnowska

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12th September 2024 @ 12:15 pm 2:15 pm

Literary Lunch with Wafa’ Tarnowska

Join us for another wonderful Literary Lunch event on Thursday, 12th of September, at The Old Bull Inn in Royston, from 12:15 pm to 2:15 pm, and meet award-winning writer, translator and storyteller Wafa’ Tarnowska.

Wafa’ Tarnowska

Wafa’ Tarnowska is an award-winning writer, translator, and storyteller known for bridging cultures and captivating audiences. Born in Lebanon, Wafa’ has traversed the globe, living and working in diverse settings from India to Australia and from the UAE to Cyprus and Lebanon. Currently dividing her time between the UK and Poland, Wafa’ is dedicated to writing, translating books and documentaries, and offering storytelling sessions in both English and Arabic.

Wafa’ sees herself as a cultural bridge between East and West, a role reflected in her acclaimed works such as ‘The Arabian Nights’ for Barefoot Books. Her latest book, ‘Nour’s Secret Library’, draws on her own experiences during Lebanon’s civil war in 1975, where she found solace in books while hiding underground to survive.

She has also translated documentaries for BBC, ITV, and Channel 4, including the award-winning “For Sama.” Her translation work extends to literature and theatre, with notable projects such as the play “Your Love is Fire” at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Additionally, she has translated books for Dhad, a Saudi publishing house and app. Wafa’ has also performed at prestigious venues like Tate Modern and ventured into radio broadcasting with “Sufi Voices” on Oneness Talk Radio. She looks forward to expanding her talents into audiobooks, radio, and television.

Book Synopsis

Inspired by the true story of a secret library in Syria, Wafa’ crafts a universal tale of the power of reading during times of trauma and stress. “Nour’s Secret Library” tells the inspiring story of young Nour and her cousin as they courageously establish an underground library amidst the chaos of bombings in Syria. Based on the author’s own life experiences and inspired by a true story, the book highlights the transformative power of literature in creating safe spaces during difficult times.

Suitable for children aged 6 to 10, readers witness Nour’s family’s resilience before and after the war, showcasing how conflict can shape a community. Illustrations are by Romanian artist Vali Mintzi and vividly contrast the colourful world the children construct with the stark reality of their surroundings.

A beautiful and poignant coming-of-age book . . . Based on the author’s and illustrator’s personal experiences, this unique war story is full of hope and resilience that shines through even the worst of situations.

― School Library Journal

This picture book tells the story, inspired by reality, of Syrian cousins who salvage books from bombed buildings and create a secret library in a basement, which offers a refuge from war. Lyrically told and attractively illustrated, it is a celebration for book lovers anywhere.

― Sunday Times

As their city is ravaged by war, two children and their community create an oasis of hope amid the destruction . . . A warm, engaging, and informative book that’s a valuable addition to children’s literature about war and conflict.

― Kirkus Reviews

Purchase your tickets here

£15 Ticket Price (per person) – includes buffet lunch

The Old Bull Inn

56 High Street
Royston, SG8 9AW
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