Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival
|THURSDAY 18th »||FRIDAY 19th »||SATURDAY 20th »||SUNDAY 21st »|
Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year and Festival Opening Party
Welcome to crime writing’s Oscars with host, Mark Lawson. The anticipation is worthy of a nail biting thriller from any of our guest writers. Who will be the victor and who the victims in one of crime fiction’s most hotly contended and prestigious award ceremonies? Steady the nerves with a pint of Yorkshire’s finest ale and continue the celebrations and commiserations after the presentation at the official Festival opening party.
Ticket price includes canapés and glass of wine or Old Peculier.
SPECIAL GUEST EVENT: Ruth Rendell interviewed by Jeanette Winterson
When it comes to persuading us to reveal our innermost secrets, nobody does it better than our friends. That’s why we persuaded Jeanette Winterson OBE to open the festival in conversation with Baroness Rendell of Babergh CBE. What do two of our leading writers talk about when they’re together? As The Guardian recently observed, ‘Winterson is a mesmerising presence who seems to speak in perfect sentences and construct perfect images as constantly and naturally as the rest of us breathe’. Who better, then, to explore the rich writings of Rendell, creator of Chief Inspector Wexford and, as Barbara Vine, sending more shivers up our spines than seems fair? Rendell is credited for transforming the whodunit into the whydunit, changing the form of the classic police procedural with astute psychological insights and concerns with the nuances of society, re-shaping the genre with her humanity. Don’t miss the chance to see two fierce talents who have blazed their own paths on one electrifying stage.
PANEL DISCUSSION: Dead in Deutschland
10.30am | This event has taken place
European crime fiction has made a killing recently, but is it time for the Scandinavians to pass their woolly jumpers to their southern neighbours? Crime novels or ‘Krimis’ have exploded in Germany with festivals and bookshops devoted to the bestsellers. Four German crime writers shed light on the burgeoning scene, exploring why the genre has finally demanded respect within their culture. The UK’s leading expert on translated crime fiction Barry Forshaw asks Jan Costin Wagner, Sebastian Fitzek Nele Neuhaus and Dane Jussi Adler-Olsen, is German crime fiction the Next Big Thing?
PANEL DISCUSSION: Victorian Crime: Fact or Fiction
Is truth stranger than fiction? Rife with intrigue and mystery, the Victorian era saw the two collide with sensational murder stories selling newspapers and crime fiction in a way never seen before. Digging up and decoding history is an art of detection in itself, as writers become investigators of the past. We bring together an anatomy of Victorian crime from the perspective both of writers who lay bare the true histories and those who make it up. Chair Sarah Pinborough seeks out the truth leading authors Kate Colquhoun, Lyndsay Faye, Kate Summerscale and Andrew Taylor down a myriad of dark Victorian alleys.
Sponsored by: Headline Publishing Group
PANEL DISCUSSION: Social Media: Who Are You?
Do you dream in hashtags? According to the government’s Chief Scientist, the web is redefining human identity, changing people’s views of who they are and their place in the world. It’s an addictive but questionable force. So how do authors navigate these virtual choppy waters? Are they just procrastinating on Twitter? And what becomes of fragile egos in the hands of ruthless online avatars? Explore the fine line between social media success and social media suicide with authors Ruth Dudley-Edwards, Erin Kelly, Steve Mosby and Sarah Pinborough. Giving them a #FF in this perfect ‘Follow Friday’ event is chair Mark Billingham. Join the conversation online live at #TOPCRIME2013
PANEL DISCUSSION: Touching Evil
At the 2011 Festival, news broke of the massacre on Utoya in Norway. During the 2012 Festival, news broke of a gunman opening fire at a movie premiere of The Dark Knight Rises in Colorado. In both horrific cases, the news threw into stark relief the conversations onstage. In a world where unspeakable crimes are committed, does crime fiction anatomise or glorify crime? Does it provide readers with consolation and enlightenment or does it further disturb? These haunting questions will be discussed by authors who are keenly aware of these difficult dimensions and explore them in their work. Michael Ridpath chairs the panel with Belinda Bauer, writing duo Nicci French, Alex Marwood and Stav Sherez.
PANEL DISCUSSION: Standing on the Shoulder of Giants
Isaac Newton famously attributed his own success to this. The work of great writers, past and present, echoes right across the crime genre, mostly because authors are fans too. The towering influences of other much-admired writers can inspire, scare and shape novelists in many ways, including some they’re not even aware of till later. We ask Sophie McKenzie, Denise Mina, Louise Penny and Henry Sutton – four of crime writing’s hottest names – to reflect on their own heroes and divulge which faithful books they return to time and again, as chair Martyn Waites asks whose shoulders it is they strain to peek over.
SPECIAL GUEST EVENT: Susan Hill – SOLD OUT!
A prolific writer with a shining talent for storytelling, Susan Hill CBE has celebrated over half a century as a published novelist. Hill’s venture into crime fiction, with the popular Simon Serailler series, has drawn huge audiences and established her as an international success. Prior to crime, she wrote entirely from her imagination – best known, perhaps, for the chilling Woman in Black that has dominated the West End for over 20 years and recently starred Daniel Radcliffe on the big screen. Interested in the psychology of crime, Hill credits the genre with opening up a rich stream of new ideas and challenges for her to discover and define contemporary life. Returning to her home county of Yorkshire, Hill will be interviewed by acclaimed reviewer and author NJ Cooper.
Sponsored by Vintage Books
Bond Panel: Fleming Fans
Casino Royale, the very first of Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels, celebrates its 60th anniversary in 2013 and is this year’s Harrogate Big Read. This panel will showcase those authors who know their Golden Guns from their Golden Eyes, writers who have been, and still are, inspired by Ian Fleming’s books and who talk eloquently about the immense shadow Mr Kiss Kiss Bang Bang casts on British crime and thriller writing. You’ll be shaken AND stirred by authors Sam Bourne, JJ Connolly, Susan Hill and Gregg Hurwitz, who will be given the license to thrill by chair Charles Cumming.
Sponsored by HarperCollins Publishers
Saturday 20th July 2013
William McIlvanney is the Godfather of Tartan Noir. He blazed a trail that dozens have followed with the Jack Laidlaw trilogy. He demonstrated how perfectly contemporary Scotland was suited to the dark evisceration of crime fiction. Born in Kilmarnock to a mining family, McIlvanney’s working class Scottish heritage lies at the heart and soul of his writing. Now the Godfather himself will appear in conversation with fellow tartan titan Ian Rankin whose globally successful Rebus novels were inspired by McIlvanney. Don’t miss the chance to discover first hand McIlvanney’s incredible life and works with one of those he inspired.
Sponsored by Canongate Books
Forensics: Val McDermid In Conversation with Sue Black – SOLD OUT!
DNA and forensic science have transformed the detection of crime. And it’s forced writers to pay attention to the minutiae under the microscope. International bestselling crime writer Val McDermid, known for her Dr Tony Hill series which was adapted for TV as Wire In The Blood, appears in conversation with Professor Sue Black OBE, the charismatic director of the award winning Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification at Dundee University and one of the leading forensic anthropologists working in the UK today. Join Sue and Val for crime fiction on the dissection table, as they probe into how meticulously researched murder thrillers transform criminal fact into criminal fiction. (And find out where Val really gets her ideas from!)
Sponsored by The Crime Vault. A Little, Brown Book Group Digital Venture
PANEL DISCUSSION: New Blood
The return of the panel dedicated to showcasing the year’s most dazzling debut authors. Always a must-see, this event will see 2013 Programming Chair, Queen of Crime Val McDermid, in the hot seat to present four of the brightest new talents on the scene, inviting them to discuss their debut novels. Eager readers on the lookout for the next big thing will discover a sure-fire list of ‘ones to watch’. Introducing Derek B. Miller (Norwegian by Night), Anya Lipska (Where The Devil Can’t Go), Malcolm Mackay (The Necessary Death of Lewis Winter) and Colette McBeth (Precious Thing).
ASA Harrison – author of The Silent Wife – was picked for New Blood but very sadly passed away in April 2013. We would like to extend our sincerest condolences to her family and friends.
Readers’ Book Group
Two authors join readers on a Big Read adventure into Bond territory. Count your lucky cards, roll the dice and look out for those tell-tale tics as David Mark and Tom Wood explore the 2013 Big Read title, Bond’s Casino Royale. Mark debuted at Harrogate on the 2012 New Blood panel with his breakthrough crime novel, Dark Winter. He spent 15 years as a journalist with 7 years as a crime reporter in Hull, so is well-versed in the glamorous 007 milieu! Wood is well versed in thrills, chills and spills as author of The Enemy, The Game, Bad Luck in Berlin and The Hunter.
Special Event: Vera – SOLD OUT!
As crabby as Columbo, the unglamorous, brilliant, down-to-earth detective Vera Stanhope has attracted a legion of fans worldwide. The flagship ITV drama stars the very glamorous and double Oscar-nominated actress Brenda Blethyn. We’re lucky enough to hear from writer Ann Cleeves, the visionary behind Vera, as she discusses her creation of Vera with none other than Brenda Blethyn herself. The two will be joined by screenwriter Paul Rutman and producer Elaine Collins, who discovered a copy of the first Vera novel in an Oxfam shop and remarkably went on to bring the books to life for millions of TV viewers.
PANEL DISCUSSION: South of the Equator
Miserable weather is as much a character of the crime milieu as the murderers and detectives in Britain. Temperatures it seems dictate our temperaments as well as our tans. Sunnier climes like South Africa and Australia swelter under a brighter spotlight as they march to a different beat under mid-day heat. But when it boils down to it, is crime on the other side of the world really that different? Join us on a memorable long-haul flight to far-flung destinations with a sizzling showcase of authors from the Southern Hemisphere . Authors Lauren Beukes, Helen Fitzgerald, Michael Robotham, and M D Villiers join chair Paul Johnston for a journey you won’t forget.
SPECIAL GUEST EVENT: Lee Child interviewed by Sarah Millican – SOLD OUT!
Thrillers. They fill you with adrenaline and make your heart beat a little faster. Just like Lee Child himself. Is it any wonder we get a little bit hysterical? That’s why we’ve chosen Special Guest interviewer, comedienne and writer Sarah Millican to strip away Lee’s defences and show us the real man underneath. We can’t wait to see what happens when one of the UK’s favourite comediennes meets one of its favourite thriller authors. Can Reacher’s machismo and monosyllabic reticence be bought down to earth by the might of the Millican? Will Reacher find a new home for his foldable toothbrush? Hold on to the edge of your seats, this promises to be one heck of a ride!
Dinner: License to Thrill
6.15pm | This event has taken place
The theme’s Bond. James Bond. Be prepared to be shaken not stirred (although preferably not when eating!) with a celebratory themed James Bond Murder Mystery Dinner, 007 Style in honour of the 60th anniversary of Ian Fleming’s first James Bond novel Casino Royale. Raise your right eyebrow, order a martini, sift through the clues and avoid the red herrings to become the winning spy with the Goldeneye. Your host for dinner will be one of our thrilling authors, who will mingle with your table and serve as your trusty team captain. Authors taking part include SJ Bolton, Peter Bradshaw, Chris Carter, Julia Crouch, Charles Cumming, Chris Ewan, AD Garrett, Elly Griffiths, Samantha Hayes, Elizabeth Haynes, Jessie Keane, David Mark, Colette McBeth, Catriona McPherson, Lottie Moggach, SJ Parris, Yrsa Sigurdardottir and Tom Wood. It’s time to be as ruthless as a Bond villain; forget world domination, there are prizes at stake.
Sponsored by McCormicks
SPECIAL GUEST EVENT: Kate Atkinson – SOLD OUT!
York born Kate Atkinson won the Whitbread Book of the Year for her stunning debut Behind the Scenes at the Museum, and has been an international bestselling author ever since. Her highly acclaimed Jackson Brodie novels, starring Jason Isaacs as Brodie, were brought to the big screen for BBC One’s Case Histories, and saw Isaacs commended for his TV portrayal of the soulful, damaged private detective. Her latest novel, the elegant and experimental Life After Life, has been met with awe, acclaim and admiration. Aktinson defies boundaries and genres and writes with a unique voice that, according to The New York Times, ‘is funny and quirky and sharp and sad — calamity laced with humour — and full of quietly heroic characters…’ BBC Radio 4 Front Row’s Mark Lawson explores the phenomenon that is Kate Atkinson MBE.
CABARET EVENT: Late Night Quiz
This is not just any quiz. This is the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival Quiz. A quiz that is the stuff of legends! Former champions taking home the coveted cup include The Wire’s David Simon, US author George Pelecanos and esteemed broadcaster Mark Lawson. It’s your chance to join such luminaries in the winner’s hall of fame with quizmasters Mark Billingham and Celebrity Mastermind winner Val McDermid.
Sponsored by Little, Brown Book Group
Sunday 21st July 2013
PANEL DISCUSSION: Slaughtering the Sacred Cows
It sounds bloody. But then any subversive approach to stereotypes and conformity is bound to create a stir. Especially amongst the herd who like to play by the rules. But defying the rules in any art form gives rise to the development of new genres and styles. The crime genre has always had its bossy-boots critics ready to lay down the law about what a crime novel should be. But in this panel, iconoclastic authors Stuart MacBride, Catriona McPherson, Manda Scott and Cathi Unsworth speak to broadcaster Mark Lawson about breaking the mould, bending the rules, flouting the conventions, sticking their tongues out and generally pushing the boundaries of the genre.
Sponsored by Hodder & Stoughton
SPECIAL GUEST EVENT: Charlaine Harris
Local waitress and telepathic barmaid Sookie Stackhouse is pretty open-minded about vampires, particularly when it comes to Bill Compton, a handsome 173-year-old living up the road. Well aren’t we all? This is a unique chance to meet the writer whose creative mind brought us the crazy southern world of Sookie. Harris’ meticulously-crafted realm inspired the beloved HBO hit series True Blood; described by the Emmy-winning creator Alan Ball as ‘popcorn for smart people’, the first season caused an overnight sensation. Journalist and broadcaster Paul Blezard sinks his teeth into the New York Times bestseller and her phenomenal thirty year career writing mysteries, from stand-alone novels to the Shakespeare mysteries and of course, the bestselling series of supernatural romantic thrillers.
All information is correct at the time of going to press. The Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival and Harrogate International Festivals reserve the right to make such alterations as may become necessary.