Now in its sixth year the Felixstowe Book Festival is known as one of the friendliest book festivals. Attracting big names such as Dame Jenni Murray [Stop press – this event has sold out, sorry!], Sir Vince Cable and Damian Le Bas, whose The Stopping Places is current BBC Book of the Week, this hand-picked festival of fantastic writers, and their writing, is hosted in the lovely seaside town of Felixstowe, on the Suffolk coast.
In today’s round-up we travel from the dangers of the air war in 1940, to the magic of King Lear, via several page-turning thrillers, and two literary novels from Faber & Faber – a publishing house that has been nurturing the best writing talent since 1929!
Let’s start with a gem of a book – Six Weeks of Blenheim Summer. Less well known than the event’s host, Louis de Bernieres, this ‘totally gripping account of the air war of May and June 1940’ (Andrew Roberts) is being called ‘the great aerial memoir of the Second World War’ (James Holland). Victoria Panton Bacon, who edited her grandfather’s book, talks with Louis de Bernieres about this inspiring time in British history on Sunday 1 July 18.00–19.00. Buy your tickets here.
This year the Felixstowe Book Festival offers super satisfying thrillers and crime novels. Sir Vince Cable talks about his closely observed political thriller, Open Arms (Saturday 30 June 11.30–12.30. Snap up one of the few remaining tickets here). From politics we go to Mark Billington‘s multi-million-selling, page-turning Tom Thorne detective novels. Mark talks about his latest, The Killing Habit, chillingly inspired by real events, on Sunday 1 July 13.30–14.30 (Click to get your tickets). If you’re into thrillers you might like check out these (just click on the red lettering) – Humphrey Hawksley with local author Iain Maitland, and The Unbeliever – diving into full-blown Cold War paranoia. (I’ll be posting a special feature on Felixstowe Book Festival thrillers soon – watch this space!)
Festival Director, Meg Reid, was impressed by the ingenuity and breadth of two Faber novelists – Kate Hamer and Alex Hourston – who discuss their novels at a joint event on Saturday 30 June 14.30–15.30. In The Doll Funeral, Kate Hamer takes us on an enigmatic journey of discovery through the eyes of a child searching for her real parents, which fans of Jeanette Winterson and Ian McEwan will love. Love After Love by Alex Hourston, is “beautifully written and quietly devastating in its exposure of middle-aged folly, to which even therapists are not immune” (Kate Saunders The Times) click for more information and tickets.
We hear ‘the power of Shakespeare to make visions out of pure language’, with great Shakespearian actors, and co-founder of the English Shakespeare Company, Michael Pennington. This actor and author, whose King Lear was described as being ‘close to perfection’, throws new light onto that most enigmatic of Shakespearian characters – King Lear – on Sunday 1 July 15.00-16.00). Click here to buy tickets for an enthralling hour with Shakespeare.
Don’t forget, if you travel by train you get our 2 for 1 offer with Greater Anglia. Just use code GREATFBF241 when buying your tickets and show a valid train ticket on the door. The main festival is held in the elegant Orwell Hotel, just across the road from the town’s station.
Tickets for many events are selling fast as we build up to the Festival weekend – book early to avoid disappointment! Full programme details are available here.
Enjoy browsing, and we look forward to welcoming you to Felixstowe at the end of this sunny month of June!