Successful chapter for Tarbert Book Festival
Tarbert bookworms had a chance to enjoy talks and signings from some of Scotland’s most talented writers, including award-winning author Chris Brookmyre.
The weekend began with the launch of the festival on Friday October 27, featuring a closed presentation from Theresa Breslin, who has more than 40 books published, and children’s author Ken MacTaggart.
Finalists in the second Tarbert Book Festival short story writing competition were also announced, including Simon Cowdroy who had travelled from Melbourne, Australia, for the ceremony.
Saturday’s festivities kicked off with a talk from BBC Grand Tours presenter Paul Murton, who spoke about his adventures sailing to more than 80 islands in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides.
A talk from geology author Alan McKirdy followed, with a presentation focused on the geology landscape of Argyll and the Islands. Alan’s book ‘Land of the Mountain and Flood’ was nominated for the Saltire Research Book of the Year award for his work in promoting the study of environmental geology in Scotland.
Charles Withers, a geographer for Royal Scotland, followed the theme of research with his illustrated talk on the history of mapping the Scottish islands.
Reviewing the mapping of Scotland and its islands from as far back as the 15th century, Charles’ talk included the history behind some of the smallest islands - Mingulay and Ailsa Craig.
A highlight for many across the weekend, award-winning author Chris Brookmyre took to the stage at the Stonefield Castle Hotel to talk about the ideas behind the books that cemented him as one of Scotland’s greatest crime writers.
With an extra hour in bed thanks to the time change, bookworms were ready for another day of book festival fun.
Sunday’s event kicked off with author Charles McGarry speaking to fans about his book ‘ The Ghost of Helen Addison’, the first book in his fiction detective series based on Leo Moral. Based locally, the novel’s protagonist travels across Argyll following the ritualistic murders of several young women.
Sci-fi, horror and fantasy author Lisa Tuttle, originally from Texas, gave her talk on her novel series ‘ The Curious Affairs of Jeperson and Lane’. Discussing the idea of her 1890s-based novel series, Lisa explained the idea behind the mystery novel set in realistic historic settings.
Festival organiser Susan Connor said: ‘ We were delighted with all our guest authors and their presentations which were all varied in style and content.
‘All the Saturday ses- sions were sell-outs, or almost. We sold more tickets this year than ever before.
‘ The committee would like to thank our guests, our audience and our main sponsor Blue Energy. Again, Tarbert Arts and Leisure Centre was an ideal venue, with our festival exhibition on the ground floor, the main writer events on the middle floor and the top floor for Writers’ Workshop.
‘ The Tarbert Book Festival is gaining a reputation as a literary event not to be missed.’
Tarbert Book Festival committee, left to right, Liz Scott, Susan Connor, Lillias MacAlister and Suse Coon.
Barbara Pauly from Falkirk and Kate Mundell from Arisaig with Charles Withers, one of the authors of ‘Mapping Scotland’s Islands’.
Simon Cowdroy flew in from Australia to read his short story ‘Click.’