The 40th Sharjah International Book Fair was held November 3-13 in the United Arab Emirates. The SIBF attracted 1,692,463 visitors representing 109 nationalities. In all, some 1,632 publishers attended from 83 countries. Spain was the guest of honor country. This year, the professional program attracted 550 people for panel discussions, rights meetings, and networking.

The show, which caters to the public and offers books for sale, conducted more than 1,000 activities, including 440 cultural sessions, 355 shows, performances, seminars and workshops for children, and sessions with more than 85 authors, including Nobel Prize-winner Abdulrazak Gurnah; TV host Trevor Noah; and novelists Yasmina Khadra, Amitav Ghosh, and Chetan Bhaga.

"On these strengths, SIBF has emerged as the world's largest book fair this year," said Ahmed bin Rakkad Al Ameri, chairman of of the Sharjah Book Authority, which runs the fair. "The conclusion of the book fair marks not the end but the beginning of a new journey of cultural excellence for the UAE and the Arab region – one in which the distinct voices of writers and intellectuals are heard and begin to resonate with the whole world. We look forward to seeing more and more creative minds contributing to humanity by achieving shared developmental goals through cultural appreciation and exchange."

Sharjah will serve as the guest of honor at three major European book fairs next year, including the London Book Fair, Bologna International Children's Book Fair, and the Guadalajara International Book Fair.

Some more highlights of this year's SIBF in photos: