Marlborough Literature Festival 2017 Events

28 September – 1 October

See the full programme below or view the brochure.

Online ticket sales now available, or please call the box office at Pound Arts 01249 701628, or visit the White Horse Bookshop, Marlborough in person (cash or cheque only).

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September 2017

Keggie Carew – Dadland

September 30 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

Dadland is a highly accomplished and moving account of a courageous, maverick father, as well as Keggie Carew’s own experience of family life.

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Daniel Shand – Fallow

September 30 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

The Betty Trask Award is for first novels by authors under the age of 35. The winner of the 2017 Prize is debut novelist Daniel Shand. Born in Kirkcaldy in 1989, Daniel currently lives in Edinburgh, where he is a PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh and a Scottish literature tutor.

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Translation Duel – One Hundred Years Of Solitude

September 30 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
St Marys Church Hall, St Marys Church + Google Map
£10

Our LitFest ‘Translation Duel’ challenges two eminent translators to explore the problems and options they face.

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Gwendoline Riley – First Love

September 30 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Gwendoline Riley’s men are often selfaggrandising, pompous and misogynist. Realistic? It isn’t that she tries not to compromise, more an inability to do so. Much of the uncompromising realism in her writing has been gleaned from working in Manchester bars, walking around the city and even a keen gig-going habit (Morrissey being a favourite).

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Tony Brenton – Historically Inevitable

September 30 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

Sir Tony’s career has included instrumental work on energy issues, the birth of European environment policy and the 1992 ‘Earth Summit’ which achieved the first global agreement on Climate Change.

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Xiaolu Guo – Once Upon A Time In The East

September 30 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
St Marys Church Hall, St Marys Church + Google Map
£10

In 2013 Xiaolu Guo was named one of the best young British novelists of the decade, an accolade previously awarded to the likes of Salman Rushdie, Martin Amis and Zadie Smith. Her latest book, Once Upon A Time In The East, is a memoir of her struggles with, and escape from, the constraints of gender, poverty and state interference.

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William Golding’s Legacy

September 30 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Golding’s daughter, Judy Carver, together with Nicola Presley, lecturer in English at Bath Spa University, will discuss just how pervasive Golding’s influence on popular culture has become.

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John O’Farrell – Things Can Only Get Worse

September 30 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

In the follow-up to his classic memoir, Things Can Only Get Better: Eighteen Miserable Years in the Life of a Labour Supporter, John O’Farrell takes us on a sometimes hilarious, sometimes heart-breaking roller-coaster ride, from the highs of the Labour victory in 1997 to the lows of Brexit.

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Kit Wharton – Emergency Admissions

September 30 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
St Marys Church Hall, St Marys Church + Google Map
£10

As a driver for the NHS ambulance service each 999 call can hurtle him into the critical moment of another person’s life. Wharton’s tales lightly veil the broken state of so much of our society. If he occasionally sounds a little detached it’s because he knows he’ll soon be off to deal with yet another crisis.

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Graeme Macrae Burnet – His Bloody Project

September 30 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
St Marys Church Hall, St Marys Church + Google Map
£10
Photo of Graeme Macrae Burnet

Graeme is one of Scotland’s brightest literary talents. Born and brought up in Kilmarnock, he worked as an English teacher in Europe and in television.

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Fiona Maddocks – Music For Life

September 30 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Music and literature make an intoxicating harmony. Fiona Maddocks, the chief music critic of The Observer, is author of three books, the latest being Music for Life. The idea for the book is to provide music that sustains us at different times in our lives.

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Kamila Shamsie – Home Fire

September 30 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

Kamila Shamsie believes writers need to take risks and write about the unfamiliar, even if it means not pulling it off entirely. Her latest book is Home Fire and tells the story of a family ripped apart by secrets and driven to pit love against loyalty.

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Frank Gardner – Crisis

September 30 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£12

************ SOLD OUT ******************
Frank Gardner OBE is the BBC’s full time security correspondent as well as a territorial army officer and highly successful author. His first novel, Crisis, was published in 2016 and became an instant bestseller.

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Sarah Hall – Madame Zero

September 30 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Sarah Hall is not your stereotypical writer. A background in rural Cumbria, a love of both rugby and wild swimming, a preparedness to embrace political issues - just a few aspects that set Sarah apart.

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David Mitchell – Short Stories

September 30 @ 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£12

David will read two or three short stories on the subjects of gardens, autism and time’s elasticity. These stories are currently only available in spoken form for the Marlborough LitFest audience. The readings will be followed by Q&A.

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October 2017

Vanessa Lafaye – At First Light

October 1 @ 10:30 am - 11:30 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Vanessa will be talking about scandals, shame, and secrets and the writing of ‘Inconvenient History’.
There will be free key lime tarts for the first 10 people through the door.

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Collectable Book Roadshow

October 1 @ 10:30 am - 12:30 pm
Katharine House Gallery, The Parade + Google Map
FREE

Do you have a potentially valuable book? British art dealer and long-established rare book dealer Christopher Gange would love to appraise it for you. Just bring your book(s) along to Katharine House Gallery in The Parade and find out more.

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JS Monroe – Find Me

October 1 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

JS Monroe is the pseudonym of journalist and novelist Jon Stock, who wrote the Daniel Marchant (or ‘Legoland’) trilogy comprising Dead Spy Running, Games Traitors Play and Dirty Little Secret.

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John Boyne – The Heart’s Invisible Furies

October 1 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

The Heart’s Invisible Furies is only Boyne’s second novel about Ireland. However, the Emerald Isle has been on an incredible journey and it’s amazing to think that homosexuality was illegal there little over 25 years ago.

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Poetry In The Pub

October 1 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
The Bear, High Street
Marlborough, United Kingdom
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FREE

This year we are asking for poems on the theme of Freedom. We invite all of whatever age to submit poems on this theme. Kayo Chingonyi, who opens LitFest on National Poetry Day, will be joining this session.

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Tim Marshall – Worth Dying For: The Power And Politics Of Flags

October 1 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
+ Google Map
£10

Shot at in Cairo, hit over the head in London, bruised by police in Tehran, arrested by Serbian intelligence, detained in Damascus, declared persona non grata in Croatia, bombed by the RAF in Belgrade and tear-gassed all over the world. All part of the job for Tim Marshall.

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Mahsuda Snaith & Xan Brooks – Hiscox Debut Authors

October 1 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Two debut novelists - both included in this year’s prestigious Observer New Faces of Fiction.

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Rare Books

October 1 @ 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Marlborough College, Bath Road
Marlborough, Wiltshire SN8 1PA United Kingdom
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£10

Marlborough College holds an important and significant collection of rare books and manuscripts ranging in date from the fifteenth century to modern times. There will be an opportunity to examine and handle the book

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Creative Writing Workshop for Adults, with Stephen May.

October 1 @ 2:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Katharine House Gallery, The Parade + Google Map
£25

Suitable for both shy beginners as well as the more experienced, this fun and stimulating workshop will cover generating plot, structure, dialogue, character development and redrafting as well as giving insights into publishing.

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Francesca Simon – The Monstrous Child

October 1 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£5

The Monstrous Child will appeal to anyone over 11 with a taste for the mythological, the gothic or the macabre. It was shortlisted for the Costa Book Award and the YA Book Prize.

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Jane Austen – A Performance

October 1 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Marlborough College, Bath Road
Marlborough, Wiltshire SN8 1PA United Kingdom
+ Google Map
£10

LitFest will recreate Jane with drawing-room intimacy on your doorstep here in Marlborough, courtesy of Stephen Siddall (director) and an acclaimed actress.

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Annie Gray – The Greedy Queen

October 1 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
+ Google Map
£10

By the end of her reign Queen Victoria had a 45” waist and was less than 5ft 1” tall - a ‘black blob’. This was not a woman who didn’t like food. This was a woman who really could eat for England, and did, as revealed by Annie Gray in her new book, The Greedy Queen: Eating with Victoria.

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Laline Paull – The Bees

October 1 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
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£10

The Bees by Laline Paull is the choice for this year’s Big Town Read. The event is a firm favourite at Marlborough LitFest, where the audience discusses a specified book with the author.

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Nikesh Shukla – The Good Immigrant

October 1 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
White Horse Bookshop, 136 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1HN United Kingdom
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£10

Nikesh Shukla has collected and edited this new book of essays by 21 British writers of colour discussing race and immigration in the UK. Some are hilarious, others will make you angry and embarrassed. It was shortlisted for Book of the Year at the British Book Awards.

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Craig Brown – Ma’am Darling: 99 Glimpses of Princess Margaret

October 1 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Marlborough Town Hall, 5 High Street
Marlborough, SN8 1AA United Kingdom
+ Google Map
£12

In her 1950’s heyday, Princess Margaret was seen as one of the most glamorous and desirable women in the world. By the time of her death, she had come to personify disappointment. One friend said he had never known an unhappier woman. Ma’am Darling is a kaleidoscopic experiment in biography, and a witty meditation on fame and art, snobbery and deference, bohemia and high society.

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