ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates, (AP) – Organizers of a prestigious Arabic literary award say a Saudi author has won the International Prize for Arabic Fiction for his novel depicting inequalities and power abuses.
Abdo Khal’s “Spewing Sparks as Big as Castles” is set in his homeland and draws its title from a Quranic verse describing hell.
It examines the destructive effect of enormous wealth by portraying relations between impoverished Saudis and a corrupt palace dweller.
The prize was awarded Tuesday in the Emirates capital Abu Dhabi.
Khal is the first Saudi to win the award, which is affiliated with the Booker Prize Foundation in London.
Khal’s novel was selected among six short-listed books from 113 entries from 17 Arab countries.