Thank you to everyone who came along to QUAD last night for Derby Reads. We were delighted with the response and we’ve had some lovely comments about the event – and about this year’s programme! There were some inspirational readings from books by authors appearing at this year’s Festival and it was all brilliantly compèred again by QUAD’s CEO, Adam Buss who was in conversation with Liz Fothergill, our Festival Chair.
We hope we kept a few surprises back – including the wonderful novelist, Kate Mosse (pictured above c. Ruth Crafer).
The Festival programme is now published and you can download it from our website or pick up a copy from QUAD today. The Children and Families’ programme is also available as well as this year’s Festival bookmarks. Our army of distribution volunteers, co-ordinated by the formidably well organised Steph Marshall Power, will be out and about over the next few days getting copies around the city and county.
Here are some of the highlights of this year’s Festival:
- Our Opening Event (on 1 June) at Derby Theatre, sponsored by Peveril Homes, with Ken Clarke MP in conversation with former MP Alan Johnson, whose own event at the Festival in 2017 was a sell out. Ken Clarke is the current ‘Father of the House’ as the MP with the longest continuous service.
- The Bookshop Band performing with novelists – and talented musicians – Louis de Bernières (Captain Corelli’s Mandolin), Joanne Harris (Chocolat) and Emma Hooper (Emma and Otto and Russell and James) on Thursday 7 June in Derby Theatre, sponsored by Geldards Law Firm.
- Novelists Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk about Kevin), Kate Mosse (Labyrinth, Sepulchre, Citadel), Louis de Bernières, Joanne Harris, Margaret Drabble, Joanna Cannon, Jon McGregor, Michael Stewart and Sathnam Sanghera
- Politics including Sarah Churchwell on Behold America, Roy Hattersley on The Catholics, Kevin Ruane on Churchill and the Bomb and, on Feminist Friday, Helen Pankhurst on the Suffragettes
- Crime and spy thriller writers: Charles Cumming and Mick Herron
- History fans can enjoy Alison Weir (Jane Seymour), Catharine Arnold on the flu pandemic of 1918, biographies of artist Gainsborough, diarists Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn and artist Joseph Gray’s Camouflage
- Nature lovers can enjoy Lev Parikian on birdwatching, Rosamund Young on The Secret Life of Cows, Tom Cox on being a 21st Century Yokel and Ed Douglas on Kinder Scout
- International voices: Jhalak Prize Panelists – Meena Kandsamy, Xiaolu Guo and Leone Ross
- Broadcasters Eddie Mair, Andy Kershaw, Emma Jane Kirby and Lucy Mangan will be talking about their life, work and interests
- Science: Professor Robert Winston, Joseph Jebelli on The Fight against Alzheimer’s, actor (and TV doctor in Call the Midwife) Stephen McGann on Flesh and Blood and space scientist, Libby Jackson, on Women in Space at a special event for children at Rolls-Royce and historian of science, Patricia Fara at a special event with Lunar21 on Science, Art & Gender
- Debut authors: Jo Jakeman, Imogen Hermes Gowar, Mahsuda Snaith, Roz Watkins
- For sports fans: cyclist and adventurer, Mark Beaumont and rugby star, Rob Andrew
- Relax and enjoy author talks over lunch or afternoon tea: the annual Festival Lunch with the Countess of Burlington on House Style, which celebrates five centuries of fashion at Chatsworth, two Afternoon Tea events with Anne de Courcy and Nicola Beauman, who returns from Persephone Books plus, at The Roundhouse, Kate Young’s The Little Library Cookbook with food tastings of some of her recipes cooked by Derby College catering students
- For poetry lovers: Salena Godden with some of the East Midlands’ finest up and coming poets
- Plus, for Archers fans: Tim Bentinck on Being David Archer.
With over 90 events, we can’t list them all here, but you can find full details online and in the Festival programme.
We are particularly pleased that four of this year’s family events will be signed by a BSL interpreter, in partnership with Communication Unlimited. You can find details of these in the programme.