Special Guests: Val McDermid and Prof Sue Black

DNA and forensics has transformed detecting crimes, taking the genre from the puzzle in the library to the minutia under the microscope.

Val McDermid is the heart and soul of the festival. As co-founder of the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival and champion of the genre – Val is one of the most admired and acclaimed crime authors at work today, selling 10 million copies of her novels worldwide. The Queen of psychological thrillers, one of her most enduring creations is the Tony Hill and Carol Jordan series, adapted for TV as Wire in the Blood.

Val met Professor Sue Black on a radio show in the late 90s and Sue became Val’s go-to expert; the pair became good friends. A professor, and director, of the award winning Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification at Dundee University, Sue has led the way in human identification in conflict zones. Working with police teams, her evidence led to securing the conviction against Scotland’s largest paedophile ring. She was awarded an OBE for her International Human Identification work from mass graves. Sue is author of All That Remains: A Life in Death.