Scene of the crime
Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival have announced their full lineup for this year and there is plenty to look forward to for fans of the genre.
The full programme for this year’s Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival was revealed this week and tickets have now gone on sale.
Alongside four days of special guests and panel events, the festival has announced a major celebration of Agatha Christie. A new exhibition will explore connections between her writing, life and publishing career using rare photographs and documents from both the Agatha Christie and Collins archives in a visually led outdoor display.
The exhibition, part of HarperCollins’ 200th anniversary, will be displayed at the Festival venue, the Old Swan Hotel, where Christie was found after her famous disappearance in 1926.
“The ghost of Agatha Christie clearly haunts the Old Swan
Hotel,” says the festival’s programming chair Elly Griffiths, author of the Dr Ruth Galloway crime series. “Nowhere is the genre she devoted her life to so enthusiastically celebrated than at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival – the biggest event devoted to crime fiction in Europe, if not the world.”
Special Guests are Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Ian Rankin, Peter May, Stuart MacBride, Joseph Finder, Arne Dahl, Kathy Reichs, Brenda Blethyn, Robson Green and James Runcie. “2017 promises a remarkable Festival as we mark 30 years of Rebus with Ian Rankin, 20 years since Lee Child introduced us to Jack Reacher, and 15 years since
Dennis Lehane released Shutter Island,” says Simon Theakston, Executive Director of T&R Theakstons and title sponsor. “I can think of no better place than our Festival – amongst readers, authors, and friends – to raise a glass of Theakston’s beer to these giants of the genre.” The opening night features the crime writing equivalent of the Oscars, the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award.
TV panels will focus on ITV’s Vera, featuring author Ann Cleeves and actress Brenda Blethyn, and ITV’s Grantchester, with writer James Runcie and actor Robson Green. Val McDermid’s annual New Blood panel, one of the most anticipated events in publishing, features four hand-picked debuts. 2017’s debuts are Fiona Cummins, Jane Harper, Joseph Knox and Kristen Lepionka.
The festival will also serve up its usual helping of heated debate. From digging into the past to skirting the supernatural, panel authors include Chris Brookmyre, Mick Herron, Alifair Burke,
Denise Mina, Belinda Bauer and Graeme Macrae Burnet, who was shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize. There will also be a panel exploring reboots of iconic crime characters, from Poirot to Sherlock, with authors Sophie Hannah, Ruth Ware and Stella Duffy. Elly Griffiths delivers a special author dinner murder mystery, Digging up the Past, with help from Francis Pryor of Time Team fame. There’ll also be a Graham Norton style Late Night Event with BBC’s Pointless star, Richard Osman, featuring authors Lee Child, Val McDermid and
The event is one of the most important in the crime publishing calendar. Agents, publishers, publicists, readers and authors attend from all over the world.
Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, the Old Swan Hotel, Harrogate, July 20-23, 2017. Box office 01423 562 303 www.harrogateinternationalfestivals.com. Tickets are now on sale.
CRIME QUEEN: Agatha Christie.