Zaeri, Mehrdad
Prinzessin Sharifa und der mutige Walter

Two ancient stories retold anew

A bilingual picture book in German and Arabic
Text: Anne Richter
Translated into Arabic by Mahmoud Hassanein
© 2013 Baobab Books; 3rd edition 2020
Original edition
40 pages, hardcover, 21.5 x 28.8 cm
CHF 24.80 / € [D] 15,90 / € [A] 16,40
ISBN 978-3-905804-52-2
Ages 5 and up

Foreign rights sold:
Farsi (Iran)
Foreign Rights Catalogue

Much is different in this book. It can be read from right to left, or from left to right, in German or in Arabic. Two ancient stories from the Arab and from the Western worlds meet in the middle: the story of Sharifa, the fearless princess, and that of Walter, Wilhelm Tell's son.

Intrepid Sharifa wants to see the country that hasn't got any women. In a fit of anger King Hamed bin Bathara, the ruler of a neighbouring kingdom, banned all women – except for his mother – from the country. Sharifa disguises herself as prince Sharif and risks her life to pay a visit to the kingdom of men. The king mistrusts the beautiful visitor. In an attempt to find out his guest's secret he sets her three tasks. But brave and clever Sharifa knows how to deal with them.
The legend of Wilhelm Tell, in turn, is well-known. But what happens when the quintessential European story about bravery and freedom is read and interpreted in today's Egypt? The emphasis shifts, and son Walter takes centre stage.

This book is a co-operation between Baobab Books and Theater Schnawwl in Mannheim (Germany), and has been produced as a bi-lingula production in German and Arabic.The two stories were the centre of a theatre co-operation between Schnawwl in Germany and the Egyptian organisation I-act in 2012/13.

The Author

Anne Richter studied drama, Nordic studies and comparative literature in Munich in Germany. She was a dramaturge at the Volkstheater Rostock, at the Erfurt theatre and at the Schnawwl, the children's and youth's theatre of the Nationaltheater Mannheim. She then worked as a journalist writing about theatre and literature for children and youths. Richter lived in Shanghai from 2002 to 2005. She returned to the Schnawwl in Mannheim as a dramaturge in 2009.

The Illustrator

Mehrdad Zaeri-Esfahani was born in Isfahan in Iran in 1970. When he was 14 his family first emigrated to Turkey, and then to Germany. After completing his schooling (with the German equivalent of A levels) he decided to become an artist. Today he lives in Mannheim in Germany with his wife, and works as a freelance artist. Zaeri has already illustrated numerous books for adults. This is his first book for children.