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Ahlam Bolooki on Books to Read Circa Now

Your summer reading list is here.

Summer is the season of reading, but between classic, cult favourites, and new releases, shortlisting a selection can be a little overwhelming. Enter: Ahlam Bolooki. Not only has Ahlam evolved into a bona fide bibliophile over the years, but she’s also the Festival Director of Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, which wrapped up its 13th edition earlier this year. Here, she recommends five books that you should read this summer – and why.

Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi

“Because I am endlessly fascinated with the concept of time travel – especially to the past in order to meet a loved one who is no longer with us.”

Unlike other time-travelling novels, Before the Coffee Gets Cold contains no gadgets nor gizmos – just an unassuming café located in a basement. Time travel only happens in one particular seat of said café and the rules are simple: customers cannot leave, they cannot change the past and present, and they must get back before the coffee gets cold. Over a million copies of this international bestseller have been sold already, its popularity translating into a Japanese TV series entitled Kohi ga Samenai Uchi Ni.
Before the Coffee Gets Cold, RRP AED 83, available at Amazon

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby

“Because although it was published in 1995, it’s an instant classic, close to the heart and effortlessly hilarious. I read this book over 25 years too late, but it was the first book in ages to make me laugh out loud.”

High Fidelity proves just how important your partner’s music collection is – at least as far as Rob Fleming is concerned. The protagonist of this hilarious novel about heartbreak owns a failing record store and is practically synonymous with John Cusack, who starred in the movie adaptation alongside Lisa Bonet, Jack Black, and Catherine Zeta Jones. Incidentally, Zoë Kravitz – daughter of Lisa Bonet – plays the lead role in the Hulu series of the same name, a gender-bender retelling of the novel.
High Fidelity, RRP AED 48, available at Amazon

Motherhood by Sheila Heti

“Because it delves into all the factors that influence women to choose a life of motherhood and offers clarity to those who read it – be it women who are up against their biological clocks or men who have those women in their lives.”

Motherhood is a moving autobiographical novel about a daunting decision faced by most women during adulthood: to have or not have children. Not only has it been translated in over a dozen languages, but it was also shortlisted for the Giller Prize. The book is sure to prompt some uncomfortable yet honest conversations – debates, even – about the highs and lows of parenthood, but therein lies its appeal.
Motherhood, RRP AED 75, available at Amazon

Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones

“Because I’ve just interviewed the author, and it was one of my favourite conversations with an author, ever. This story was her most personal work and it felt personal to me as a reader, too.”

Considering its opening line reads “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist”, Silver Sparrow takes a deep dive into complicated family dynamics. Winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2019, it follows two sisters who lead different lives, have different last names, and discover that they share a father. Author Tayari Jones states these situations are so common that churches have smelling salts ready for grieving widows who discover their husbands had another family.
Silver Sparrow, RRP AED 35, available at Amazon

Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri

“Because who wouldn’t love to read about an ordinary life going through an existential crisis, told in lyrical prose?”

While author Jhumpa Lahiri is renowned for her stories about Southeast Asian immigrants, Whereabouts takes an entirely different approach. The story follows the journey of an unnamed narrator – a widowed professor navigating life in solitude – in an unknown Italian city. Through various location-based chapters (‘In the Office’, ‘On the Street’, ‘In the Pool’), the reader gets a deeper understanding of her loneliness and how she experiences it. Interestingly, Lahiri initially wrote the novel in Italian and then translated it into English herself.
Whereabouts, RRP AED 39, available at Amazon

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Blooming Beauty: A Guide to the Top Florists and Flower Delivery Services in Dubai

Blooms Everywhere

Dubai is known for its luxurious lifestyle and extravagant displays of beauty. And what better way to add a touch of elegance to any occasion than with a stunning bouquet of flowers? Whether you’re looking for a romantic gesture, a thoughtful gift, or simply want to brighten up your home, Dubai has a plethora of florists and flower delivery services to choose from. The top florists and flower delivery services in Dubai, are known for their luxury flower arrangements and exotic blooms.

Why Choose a Professional Florist?

While it may be tempting to pick up a bouquet of flowers from the local grocery store, there are many benefits to choosing a professional florist. Professional florists have a deep understanding of different types of flowers, their meanings, and how to arrange them in a way that creates a stunning display. They also have access to a wider variety of flowers, including exotic blooms that may not be available at your local store. Additionally, professional florists have the skills and tools to create intricate and unique arrangements that will truly make a statement.

Luxury Flower Arrangements for Special Occasions

When it comes to special occasions, such as weddings, anniversaries, or birthdays, a professional florist can help you create a truly memorable experience with their luxury flower arrangements. These arrangements often feature high-end flowers, such as orchids, peonies, and roses, and are designed to make a statement.

Exotic Flower Arrangements for a Touch of Glamour

For those looking for something truly unique and eye-catching, exotic flower arrangements are the way to go. These arrangements often feature rare and exotic blooms, such as protea, bird of paradise, and anthurium, that are not commonly found in traditional bouquets. Professional florists have the knowledge and expertise to create stunning arrangements with these exotic flowers, adding a touch of glamour and sophistication to any occasion.

Top Florists and Flower Delivery Services in Dubai

Now that we’ve established the importance of choosing a professional florist, let’s take a look at some of the top florists and flower delivery services in Dubai.

Bliss Flower Boutique

Located in the heart of Dubai, Bliss Flower Boutique is known for its luxurious and elegant flower arrangements. Their team of skilled florists creates stunning bouquets and arrangements using high-quality flowers sourced from around the world. They offer a wide range of services, including wedding and event floral design, corporate arrangements, and flower delivery. Their luxury flower arrangements are perfect for special occasions or as a gift for a loved one.

Upscale and Posh

Upscale and Posh is a luxury flower boutique that specializes in creating unique and extravagant floral arrangements. Their team of experienced florists uses only the freshest and most beautiful flowers to create stunning displays that are sure to impress. They offer a variety of services, including wedding and event floral design, corporate arrangements, and flower delivery. Their exotic flower arrangements are perfect for those looking to add a touch of glamour to any occasion.

Black Tulip Flowers

Black Tulip Flowers is a renowned florist in Dubai, known for their exquisite and creative floral designs. Their team of talented florists creates stunning arrangements using a variety of flowers, including rare and exotic blooms. They offer a range of services, including wedding and event floral design, corporate arrangements, and flower delivery. Their luxury flower arrangements are perfect for those looking for a touch of elegance and sophistication.

Flower Station Dubai

Flower Station Dubai is a popular flower delivery service in Dubai, known for their prompt and reliable service. They offer a wide range of flowers, including luxury and exotic blooms, and provide same-day delivery for orders placed before 6 pm. Their team of skilled florists can create custom arrangements for any occasion, making them a go-to choice for many in Dubai.

Bliss Flowers and Design

Bliss Flowers and Design is a luxury flower boutique that offers a wide range of floral services, including wedding and event floral design, corporate arrangements, and flower delivery. Their team of experienced florists creates stunning arrangements using high-quality flowers sourced from around the world. They also offer a subscription service, where customers can receive a weekly or monthly delivery of fresh flowers to brighten up their home or office.

How to Choose the Right Florist for You

With so many options to choose from, it can be overwhelming to find the right florist for your needs. We’ve got some recommendations and tips to help you make the right choice:

Consider Your Budget

Before you start looking for a florist, it’s important to have a budget in mind. It’s always best to narrow down your options and ensure that you don’t overspend.

Look at Their Portfolio

When choosing a florist, it’s important to look at their portfolio to get an idea of their style and the quality of their work. Most florists will have a portfolio on their website or social media pages, so be sure to take a look before making a decision. You can ask them to send you their PDF file or photographs of their work to get a sense of their work and style.

Read Reviews

Reading reviews from previous customers absolutely gives you valuable insights into a florist’s service and the quality of their arrangements. Look for reviews on their website, google reviews, social media pages, or consumer review sites. Dubai has plenty of community websites that offer reviews and recommendations.

Consider Their Specialties

Some florists may specialize in certain types of arrangements, such as luxury or exotic flower arrangements, while others may offer a wider range of services. Some might be great at setting up flowers for a bachelorette party while another may be great at sending flowers for the new mum.

Flowers are a beautiful and timeless way to express love, gratitude, and appreciation. With the help of a professional florist, let your creative juices flow to put together stunning arrangements that will make a lasting impression. Whether you’re looking for luxury flower arrangements, exotic blooms, or reliable flower delivery services, Dubai brings you all of it!

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I choose the right florist in Dubai for a specific occasion or floral arrangement?

Consider the florist’s specialty, customer reviews, and the style of their arrangements. Some florists excel in weddings, while others are renowned for their unique bouquets. Our guide provides insights to help you make an informed choice based on your needs.

What are the advantages of using flower delivery services in Dubai and how do I ensure the freshness of the blooms upon arrival?

Flower delivery services in Dubai offer convenience and the assurance that your blooms will arrive in pristine condition. Select florists with efficient delivery systems and consider same-day delivery options for maximum freshness. Our guide highlights services that prioritize the quality and freshness of their floral arrangements.

Are these florists and flower delivery services suitable for various budgets, and do they offer customization options?

Yes, the featured florists cater to a range of budgets, and many offer customization options to suit your preferences. Whether you’re looking for an elaborate arrangement or a simpler bouquet, our guide provides details on the pricing and customization possibilities offered by each florist.

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