If only books were as popular as smart phones and silly online challenges, the world would've been a better place. 

It's been over three decades since the internet turned every table there is, making its way to everyone's home. As tech gadgets grow in sophistication, libraries collect dust and yellow-paged books.

In remembrance of the excitement once felt by a simple visit to the local bookstore, we take a look at five Arab authors who've had great impact on the region's youth. 

1. Ghada al-Samman (1942 - Present)

Source: El Fann

Ghada al-Samman, born in 1942 in Damascus, Syria, is a journalist and novelist with over 40 published books and works. 

From poetry and short stories, to novels and journalistic works, she's considered one of the most important Syrian authors as well as one of the first Arab feminists to be vocal about gender equality. 

The Lebanese city Beirut had a lot of influence on her writing, which had her dedicate many books to it. Her love affair in the 60s with famous author Ghassan Kanafani was documented in a series of published letters. 

She reportedly currently resides in Paris, France. 

2. Ahmed Khaled Tawfik (1962 - 2018)

An Egyptian physician with a knack for writing, Tawfik started his supernatural series of short stories Ma Waraa Al Tabiaa (The Supernatural) in 1993. He then saw immense success after publishing Utopia in 2008. 

He was the first Arab to explore and write thriller, horror, and fiction books, and was considered a pioneer in the medical thriller style.

He was the greatest influence on the Egyptian and Arab youth, who took up reading thanks to his stories. Through his passion, hard work, and continued inspiration, he surely deserved the title "Godfather" of our entire generation.

He passed away in 2018. 

3. Bahaa Taher (1935 - Present)

Source: El Cinema

An award-winning Egyptian novelist and translator, Bahaa Taher gave the Arab world brilliant stories about love and revolution. Sunset Oasis, Aunt Safiyya and the Monastery, and Love in Exile are some of his best books. 

He was granted the State Award of Merit in Literature in 1998 - considered the highest praise an author can get in Egypt - as well as the Italian Giuseppe Acerbi prize in 2000 for Aunt Safiyya and the Monastery.

In 2008, he received the International Prize for Arabic Fiction for his novel Sunset Oasis

4. Ibrahim Nasrallah (1954 - Present)

A Palestinian-Jordanian poet and novelist, Ibrahim Nasrallah was born and raised in Amman, Jordan. He began writing at the age of 13 as a way to express himself.

He found inspiration for his work from every good piece of poetry he read growing up. In 2018, he won the International Prize for Arabic Fiction for his dystopian novel The Second War of the Dog

He's currently working on a trilogy, which is going to be a part of his Palestinian comedy project that revolves around the Palestinian journey throughout different generations and their evolution.

5. Nabil Farouk (1956 - Present)

An Egyptian author, Nabil Farouk is well known for his Ragol El Mostaheel (The Man of the Impossible) series, which introduced Arab audiences to the world of spies and covert operations.

He was amongst the first writers to dabble in this genre. He started exploring his writing abilities when he was merely a kid, and won a prize for his book The Prophecy before even graduating medical school.

He later started his second series Malaf Al Mostakbal (The Future File) as well as writing several crime and thriller novels.