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Louise Doughty and Kate Hamer£8

Two remarkable new books from two of our finest novelists. Louise, whose bestselling Apple Tree Yard became a major BBC series earlier this year, takes us on a journey from Cold War Europe to Civil Rights California and massacres in Indonesia, all through the story of one troubled man in Black Water. Author of The Girl in the Red Coat, Kate’s new book The Doll Funeral is part-thriller, part gripping family drama as 13-year-old Ruby tells her troubled story. Beaten and abused, she discovers that she is adopted and her search for her real parents takes her on a mesmerising journey.
Sponsored by HW Fisher

Monday October 02 - 06:30 pm
Town Hall

Lulu Allison & Laura Kaye: Local Roots£6

Two debut novelists, both of whom grew up in the Henley area, talk about what inspired them to put pen to paper, and the long struggle between writing those first words and their books being published. Described by The Observer as “a charming study of manners and migration”, BBC documentary-maker Laura’s English Animals  is a funny, subversive and poignant novel about a doomed love affair, a certain kind of Englishness and prejudice. In artist Lulu’s Twice the Speed of Dark,  her main character Anna writes in an isolated house, reflecting on the cruelty of the world as her life falls into long-suppressed fury and mental breakdown.

Monday October 02 - 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Rory Clements and Anne O’Brien: Historical Fiction Today£6

Historical fiction is one of the most popular literary genres. Here, two leading authors discuss why it appeals to them and to such a wide audience. Rory’s latest book Corpus begins in Berlin in 1936 and moves through murders in England to links with Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson. In The Shadow Queen, Anne goes back to the Plantaget and the scheming beauty that is Joan of Kent, mother of Richard II. A chance to learn more about this fascinating literary world.

Tuesday October 03 - 02:30 pm
Town Hall

Rachel Joyce£8

The award-winning author of the worldwide bestseller The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry returns with her new novel, The Music Shop. At the heart of the story is music, and the effect it can have on people. Set in 1988, it follows music shop owner Frank into a beguiling relationship with a mysterious woman and the part his vast vinyl collection, spanning everything from jazz to punk, plays. As well as being one of our leading novelists, Rachel is an acclaimed short story writer and radio playwright. Come and hear her discuss her career to date.

Tuesday October 03 - 04:30 pm
Town Hall

Faber Proof Party£12.50

A special evening in the company of one of the world’s most prestigious publishers, as we look at three of their most exciting books to be released next year. Editorial director Louisa Joyner, who will discuss The Madonna of the Mountains by Elise Valmorbida, is joined by Leo Benedictus, author of literary thriller Consent and Chris Power with his debut short story collection, Mothers. Come along and you’ll take home copies of all three books, months before official publication.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

UNFORTUNATELY THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT. PLEASE CALL THE BOX OFFICE IF YOU WISH TO JOIN THE WAITING LIST.

 

Tuesday October 03 - 06:30 pm
Stonor Park

Alex Preston and Neil Gower: Author & Illustrator, Birds & Books£6

Alex and Neil have together created the fabulous As Kingfishers Catch Fire, charting the relationship between birds and literature. Novelist and journalist Alex, a birdwatcher in his early teens, has compiled the words from Keats to Jonathan Livingstone Seagull. And Neil, an internationally acclaimed graphic artist, perhaps best known for those wonderful Bill Bryson book covers, has produced the fabulous illustrations. Dive into the world of illustrated books – and birds – as we ask: how does it really work between writer and artist?

Tuesday October 03 - 06:30 pm
Town Hall

Paula Hawkins£10

Few debut novels have had the astonishing impact of Paula’s Girl on the Train, which has sold over 18 million copies globally and became a hit film starring Emily Blunt. She makes a rare festival appearance to talk about her new psychological thriller Into The Water, which went straight to the top of the charts in May. Drama, tension, voices from the past and the death of a sister… Move to the edge of your seats as Paula tells us what it was like to create a global phenomenon with her first thriller after years writing romantic comedy fiction and journalism.
Sponsored by Head Partnership Solicitors

Tuesday October 03 - 08:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Prue Leith: A Relished Return£12.50

No one was better qualified to step into the Great British Bake Off than Prue. As a cook, restaurateur, food writer and businesswoman she played a key role in the revolution of Britain’s eating habits. Then in 1995, having published twelve cookbooks, she gave up writing about food to concentrate on fiction – and with great success, most recently in her Food of Love series. A real Festival favorite returns to reflect on her wonderful life with her newly republished autobiography, Relish.
Sponsored by Freeths LLP

Wednesday October 04 - 02:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Katie Kirby: Hurrah For Gin£10

Every parent will empathise with Katie, whose hilarious take on the rollercoaster ride of parenting, Hurrah for Gin, went from blog to bestselling book. She joins us the day before publication of the much-anticipated follow-up, The Daily Struggles of Archie Adams. See the world through the eyes of Archie (aged two-and-a-quarter). The world is out to get him, people tell him what to do, but he gets some comfort from his best friend Amelia and occasionally sinking his teeth into other people’s limbs. Then, his parents tell him that they are having another baby..! Join Katie for an evening of gin and both kinds of tonic.
Sponsored by Mr Hobbs Gin

Wednesday October 04 - 08:30 pm
Phyllis Court

Chibundu Onuzo and Anietie Isong: African Voices£6

Nigerian-born, British-based writers Chibundu and Anietie each arrive at Henley with novels set in Lagos, and both featuring characters working for the government. In Welcome to Lagos, Chibundu’s army officer revolts when ordered to kill innocent civilians and knows that it is time to leave the army. In Radio Sunrise, Anietie’s young journalist works for the government radio station but has the funding for his weekly radio drama cut. Two novelists with a fascinating insight into the country of their birth.

Wednesday October 04 - 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Vince Cable£12.50

Long-serving MP, Minister and key member of the Coalition, Vince has now become a novelist. No surprise that Open Arms is set in Westminster, with Kate Thompson – a glamorous housewife-turned-MP – at its centre. Her meteoric rise saw her become a Minister and become embroiled in intrigue and passion. So how did Vince get taken down this creative road? And will he have anything to say on events of the last two years? Find out from the man himself.

Thursday October 05 - 04:30 pm
Phyllis Court

F-Word: Gemma Cairney, Lousie Pentland & Holly Smale£10

A frank, fearless and funny discussion of what it means to be a feminist in 2017 with three top speakers: presenter of Radio 1’s advice show The Surgery and author of Open: A Toolkit For How Magic & Messed Up Life Can Be Gemma; Sprinkleofglitter vlogger, UN Gender Equality Ambassador and author of Wilde Like Me Louise; and Holly, author of the bestselling series of Geek Girl YA novels.

Thursday October 05 - 06:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Crime and Wine£8

A very popular recurring strand returns with two acclaimed writers and their debut crime novels. Faber Academy graduate Emma Flint’s Little Deaths is based on real events in 1960s New York as a young reporter covers a horrifying crime. Former Chiltern Edge head teacher Vera Morris’ Some Particular Evil takes us to 1970s Suffolk where a headmaster’s wife is murdered and all the school staff are suspects.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

Thursday October 05 - 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Roddy Doyle£10

One of the greatest living novelists makes his long-awaited debut at Henley. In his latest book, Smile, a chance meeting with an old school friend take his protagonist on a journey back to being taught by Christian Brothers and his celebrity marriage. A rare chance to hear from the author of The Commitments, The Snapper and Booker-winner Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha – one of our great, great storytellers.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

Friday October 06 - 06:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Book Club Friday Ayisha Malik & Cesca Major£8

A perfect start to the weekend. Local host Amanda Jennings returns to the Henley stage for our popular ‘Book Club Friday’ event, this time speaking to fellow novelists Ayisha and Cesca. Ayisha follows her bestselling debut, Sofia Khan Is Not Obliged – described by Red Magazine as “Snort-Diet-Coke-out-of-your-nostrils funny” – with The Other Half of Happiness while Festival regular Cesca’s latest The Last Night is a love story that spans the generations.

Friday October 06 - 06:30 pm
Town Hall

Stanley Johnson – Brexit: The Thriller£12.50

Stanley – a Festival favourite in his own right, and father of previous speakers Boris and Rachel – returns to last year’s referendum for the storyline of his first novel in almost 30 years. Set to become a Channel 4 series, Kompromat claims to recount the story of a political coup, and explores the skullduggery that might just have gone on behind the scenes – although it’s hard to believe a fictional account could be more dramatic than reality… certainly in the case of Boris…..or perhaps it was?

Saturday October 07 - 11:00 am
Kenton Theatre

Michael Frayn and Barney Norris: Masters of Stage and Page£10

Two writers with the rare achievement of near-universal acclaims for both their plays and novels. Michael – whose credits include Noises Off, Clockwise, Copenhagen and Whitbread Best Novel, Spies – has just published Pocket Playhouse, 36 comic sketches that are a tour de force of theatrical imagination and satire. After two plays and a book of poetry, Critics Circle winner Barney’s first novel Five Rivers Met on a Wooded Plain was released to acclaim last year.

Saturday October 07 - 03:00 pm
Kenton Theatre

Joanne Harris & Samantha Shannon£8

Two respected authors – also two of the most refreshing voices on the publishing industry and the world at large – join us to discuss their shared experiences of creating fictional universes of their own. Chocolat author Joanne has just published Runelight while Samantha is behind the acclaimed Bone Season series including her latest, The Song Rising.
A collection will be held for our charity partner, ABC to Read

Saturday October 07 - 03:00 pm
Town Hall

Susanna Beard – Workshop- Sunday: Crime Writing£8

As the author of a hugely well-received debut novel, Susanna is proof that writing courses can work. Hear how she became a novelist after a long career in public relations, her writing tips and what inspired Dare to Remember, her psychological drama about recovery, mental illness and therapy, as told through Lisa, whose best friend Ali dies in a horrific incident that changes everything in her life.
Sponsored by Dragonfly Tea

Sunday October 08 - 11:00 am
Phyllis Court Pavilion

Imran Mahmood & Kate London: Crime Fiction from Experience£8

Imran’s You Don’t Know Me starts in court when a defendant sacks his lawyer and decides to give his own speech. Kate’s Death Message begins after the great storm of 1987 when a teenage girl walks out of her home and disappears – but 25 years later, her case is reopened.

Sunday October 08 - 01:00 pm
Town Hall

Julie Crisp & Natasha Bardon – Workshop Sunday: Agent v Editor£8

Formerly editorial director for Pan Macmillan (with a focus on crime and genre fiction), literary agent Julie is joined in Henley by Natasha, publishing director at Harper Collins’ sci-fi and fantasy imprint, HarperVoyager. Together, they shed some light on the process of pitch to publication and explain the key roles in publishing – what editors are looking for, what agents are looking for and how to get one.
Sponsored by Dragonfly Tea

Sunday October 08 - 05:00 pm
Phyllis Court Pavilion

Paula Hawkins£10

Few debut novels have had the astonishing impact of Paula’s Girl on the Train, which has sold over 18 million copies globally and became a hit film starring Emily Blunt. She makes a rare festival appearance to talk about her new psychological thriller Into The Water, which went straight to the top of the charts in May. Drama, tension, voices from the past and the death of a sister… Move to the edge of your seats as Paula tells us what it was like to create a global phenomenon with her first thriller after years writing romantic comedy fiction and journalism.
Sponsored by Head Partnership Solicitors

Tuesday October 03 - 10/03/2017 08:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Stanley Johnson – Brexit: The Thriller£12.50

Stanley – a Festival favourite in his own right, and father of previous speakers Boris and Rachel – returns to last year’s referendum for the storyline of his first novel in almost 30 years. Set to become a Channel 4 series, Kompromat claims to recount the story of a political coup, and explores the skullduggery that might just have gone on behind the scenes – although it’s hard to believe a fictional account could be more dramatic than reality… certainly in the case of Boris…..or perhaps it was?

Saturday October 07 - 10/07/2017 11:00 am
Kenton Theatre

Michael Frayn and Barney Norris: Masters of Stage and Page£10

Two writers with the rare achievement of near-universal acclaims for both their plays and novels. Michael – whose credits include Noises Off, Clockwise, Copenhagen and Whitbread Best Novel, Spies – has just published Pocket Playhouse, 36 comic sketches that are a tour de force of theatrical imagination and satire. After two plays and a book of poetry, Critics Circle winner Barney’s first novel Five Rivers Met on a Wooded Plain was released to acclaim last year.

Saturday October 07 - 10/07/2017 03:00 pm
Kenton Theatre

Prue Leith: A Relished Return£12.50

No one was better qualified to step into the Great British Bake Off than Prue. As a cook, restaurateur, food writer and businesswoman she played a key role in the revolution of Britain’s eating habits. Then in 1995, having published twelve cookbooks, she gave up writing about food to concentrate on fiction – and with great success, most recently in her Food of Love series. A real Festival favorite returns to reflect on her wonderful life with her newly republished autobiography, Relish.
Sponsored by Freeths LLP

Wednesday October 04 - 10/04/2017 02:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Roddy Doyle£10

One of the greatest living novelists makes his long-awaited debut at Henley. In his latest book, Smile, a chance meeting with an old school friend take his protagonist on a journey back to being taught by Christian Brothers and his celebrity marriage. A rare chance to hear from the author of The Commitments, The Snapper and Booker-winner Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha – one of our great, great storytellers.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

Friday October 06 - 10/06/2017 06:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

F-Word: Gemma Cairney, Lousie Pentland & Holly Smale£10

A frank, fearless and funny discussion of what it means to be a feminist in 2017 with three top speakers: presenter of Radio 1’s advice show The Surgery and author of Open: A Toolkit For How Magic & Messed Up Life Can Be Gemma; Sprinkleofglitter vlogger, UN Gender Equality Ambassador and author of Wilde Like Me Louise; and Holly, author of the bestselling series of Geek Girl YA novels.

Thursday October 05 - 10/05/2017 06:30 pm
Kenton Theatre

Vince Cable£12.50

Long-serving MP, Minister and key member of the Coalition, Vince has now become a novelist. No surprise that Open Arms is set in Westminster, with Kate Thompson – a glamorous housewife-turned-MP – at its centre. Her meteoric rise saw her become a Minister and become embroiled in intrigue and passion. So how did Vince get taken down this creative road? And will he have anything to say on events of the last two years? Find out from the man himself.

Thursday October 05 - 10/05/2017 04:30 pm
Phyllis Court

Katie Kirby: Hurrah For Gin£10

Every parent will empathise with Katie, whose hilarious take on the rollercoaster ride of parenting, Hurrah for Gin, went from blog to bestselling book. She joins us the day before publication of the much-anticipated follow-up, The Daily Struggles of Archie Adams. See the world through the eyes of Archie (aged two-and-a-quarter). The world is out to get him, people tell him what to do, but he gets some comfort from his best friend Amelia and occasionally sinking his teeth into other people’s limbs. Then, his parents tell him that they are having another baby..! Join Katie for an evening of gin and both kinds of tonic.
Sponsored by Mr Hobbs Gin

Wednesday October 04 - 10/04/2017 08:30 pm
Phyllis Court

Susanna Beard – Workshop- Sunday: Crime Writing£8

As the author of a hugely well-received debut novel, Susanna is proof that writing courses can work. Hear how she became a novelist after a long career in public relations, her writing tips and what inspired Dare to Remember, her psychological drama about recovery, mental illness and therapy, as told through Lisa, whose best friend Ali dies in a horrific incident that changes everything in her life.
Sponsored by Dragonfly Tea

Sunday October 08 - 10/08/2017 11:00 am
Phyllis Court Pavilion

Julie Crisp & Natasha Bardon – Workshop Sunday: Agent v Editor£8

Formerly editorial director for Pan Macmillan (with a focus on crime and genre fiction), literary agent Julie is joined in Henley by Natasha, publishing director at Harper Collins’ sci-fi and fantasy imprint, HarperVoyager. Together, they shed some light on the process of pitch to publication and explain the key roles in publishing – what editors are looking for, what agents are looking for and how to get one.
Sponsored by Dragonfly Tea

Sunday October 08 - 10/08/2017 05:00 pm
Phyllis Court Pavilion

Faber Proof Party£12.50

A special evening in the company of one of the world’s most prestigious publishers, as we look at three of their most exciting books to be released next year. Editorial director Louisa Joyner, who will discuss The Madonna of the Mountains by Elise Valmorbida, is joined by Leo Benedictus, author of literary thriller Consent and Chris Power with his debut short story collection, Mothers. Come along and you’ll take home copies of all three books, months before official publication.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

UNFORTUNATELY THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT. PLEASE CALL THE BOX OFFICE IF YOU WISH TO JOIN THE WAITING LIST.

 

Tuesday October 03 - 10/03/2017 06:30 pm
Stonor Park

Imran Mahmood & Kate London: Crime Fiction from Experience£8

Imran’s You Don’t Know Me starts in court when a defendant sacks his lawyer and decides to give his own speech. Kate’s Death Message begins after the great storm of 1987 when a teenage girl walks out of her home and disappears – but 25 years later, her case is reopened.

Sunday October 08 - 10/08/2017 01:00 pm
Town Hall

Lulu Allison & Laura Kaye: Local Roots£6

Two debut novelists, both of whom grew up in the Henley area, talk about what inspired them to put pen to paper, and the long struggle between writing those first words and their books being published. Described by The Observer as “a charming study of manners and migration”, BBC documentary-maker Laura’s English Animals  is a funny, subversive and poignant novel about a doomed love affair, a certain kind of Englishness and prejudice. In artist Lulu’s Twice the Speed of Dark,  her main character Anna writes in an isolated house, reflecting on the cruelty of the world as her life falls into long-suppressed fury and mental breakdown.

Monday October 02 - 10/02/2017 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Crime and Wine£8

A very popular recurring strand returns with two acclaimed writers and their debut crime novels. Faber Academy graduate Emma Flint’s Little Deaths is based on real events in 1960s New York as a young reporter covers a horrifying crime. Former Chiltern Edge head teacher Vera Morris’ Some Particular Evil takes us to 1970s Suffolk where a headmaster’s wife is murdered and all the school staff are suspects.
Sponsored by Laithwaite’s Wine

Thursday October 05 - 10/05/2017 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Joanne Harris & Samantha Shannon£8

Two respected authors – also two of the most refreshing voices on the publishing industry and the world at large – join us to discuss their shared experiences of creating fictional universes of their own. Chocolat author Joanne has just published Runelight while Samantha is behind the acclaimed Bone Season series including her latest, The Song Rising.
A collection will be held for our charity partner, ABC to Read

Saturday October 07 - 10/07/2017 03:00 pm
Town Hall

Book Club Friday Ayisha Malik & Cesca Major£8

A perfect start to the weekend. Local host Amanda Jennings returns to the Henley stage for our popular ‘Book Club Friday’ event, this time speaking to fellow novelists Ayisha and Cesca. Ayisha follows her bestselling debut, Sofia Khan Is Not Obliged – described by Red Magazine as “Snort-Diet-Coke-out-of-your-nostrils funny” – with The Other Half of Happiness while Festival regular Cesca’s latest The Last Night is a love story that spans the generations.

Friday October 06 - 10/06/2017 06:30 pm
Town Hall

Chibundu Onuzo and Anietie Isong: African Voices£6

Nigerian-born, British-based writers Chibundu and Anietie each arrive at Henley with novels set in Lagos, and both featuring characters working for the government. In Welcome to Lagos, Chibundu’s army officer revolts when ordered to kill innocent civilians and knows that it is time to leave the army. In Radio Sunrise, Anietie’s young journalist works for the government radio station but has the funding for his weekly radio drama cut. Two novelists with a fascinating insight into the country of their birth.

Wednesday October 04 - 10/04/2017 08:30 pm
Town Hall

Rory Clements and Anne O’Brien: Historical Fiction Today£6

Historical fiction is one of the most popular literary genres. Here, two leading authors discuss why it appeals to them and to such a wide audience. Rory’s latest book Corpus begins in Berlin in 1936 and moves through murders in England to links with Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson. In The Shadow Queen, Anne goes back to the Plantaget and the scheming beauty that is Joan of Kent, mother of Richard II. A chance to learn more about this fascinating literary world.

Tuesday October 03 - 10/03/2017 02:30 pm
Town Hall

Rachel Joyce£8

The award-winning author of the worldwide bestseller The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry returns with her new novel, The Music Shop. At the heart of the story is music, and the effect it can have on people. Set in 1988, it follows music shop owner Frank into a beguiling relationship with a mysterious woman and the part his vast vinyl collection, spanning everything from jazz to punk, plays. As well as being one of our leading novelists, Rachel is an acclaimed short story writer and radio playwright. Come and hear her discuss her career to date.

Tuesday October 03 - 10/03/2017 04:30 pm
Town Hall

Louise Doughty and Kate Hamer£8

Two remarkable new books from two of our finest novelists. Louise, whose bestselling Apple Tree Yard became a major BBC series earlier this year, takes us on a journey from Cold War Europe to Civil Rights California and massacres in Indonesia, all through the story of one troubled man in Black Water. Author of The Girl in the Red Coat, Kate’s new book The Doll Funeral is part-thriller, part gripping family drama as 13-year-old Ruby tells her troubled story. Beaten and abused, she discovers that she is adopted and her search for her real parents takes her on a mesmerising journey.
Sponsored by HW Fisher

Monday October 02 - 10/02/2017 06:30 pm
Town Hall

Alex Preston and Neil Gower: Author & Illustrator, Birds & Books£6

Alex and Neil have together created the fabulous As Kingfishers Catch Fire, charting the relationship between birds and literature. Novelist and journalist Alex, a birdwatcher in his early teens, has compiled the words from Keats to Jonathan Livingstone Seagull. And Neil, an internationally acclaimed graphic artist, perhaps best known for those wonderful Bill Bryson book covers, has produced the fabulous illustrations. Dive into the world of illustrated books – and birds – as we ask: how does it really work between writer and artist?

Tuesday October 03 - 10/03/2017 06:30 pm
Town Hall