Eleven-Year-Old Lebanese Signs First English Novel
Habib Jaleel Said, an 11-year-old Lebanese boy, launched his first book, “The Icy Kidnapper,” in a book signing event that took place in April at the Safadi Cultural Center in Tripoli.
Habib said he was inspired by the Harry Potter fantasy novel series and Percy Jackson series that he used to read at the age of nine. He plans to launch similar stories and has therefore created his own imaginary hero Masaio Dingo whom he pictures as a “courageous and honest man.”
“I used to write each evening and the ideas just flowed in. I did not find any difficulty in searching for images or pictures in my mind,” he told the daily An Nahar.
His friends and teachers at school believed in his potentials saying that he had something special: “He lives on a cloud,” some said “he is inhabited with dreams that he will fulfill,” others added.
The two-hour book signing, took place over the weekend in the presence of Journalist Isabelle Matta, representative of the Safadi Center Rima Abu Bakr, Habib's teachers at the Choueifat International School in Koura Rima Khdeir and Professor Robert Myers, professor of English and Creative Writing at the American University of Beirut, in addition to friends.
The story of Habib's first book chronicles a hero named Masaio who is trying with some friends to save his family after they were kidnapped by the most dangerous men in the world.
Galaxies, spaceships and outer space planets are part of the story's setting.
Habib insisted that the proceeds from the book go to two charities Children Waiting Everywhere and the Children's Cancer Center.
The book is being sold in all branches of the Virgin Megastore.
*Photo credit An Nahar