By Anna Scott
What would be the perfect location for a literary festival? Somewhere picturesque, peaceful and inspiring? Well, along with the growing number of fantastic book events that occur in our area, a new kid on the block is soon to arrive and it might just be the most impressive of the lot. If the combination of bestselling authors and Kew Gardens sounds like a tempting one, you’re in luck, because the Write on Kew literary festival is due to take place at the jewel in west London’s botanical crown from 24th to 28th September. In order to whet your appetite further, we’ve selected a few Write on Kew festival highlights for both adults and children.
The one and only Margaret Atwood, Booker Prize–winning novelist and queen of literary fiction, will be attending on the evening of September 25th to talk about her intriguing and sinister new novel, The Heart Goes Last, a satire on 21st century society. Don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to listen to one of the world’s great contemporary novelists discuss her work.
On 26th September, bestselling novelist of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernières, will be talking about his brand new book, The Dust That Falls From Dreams. Dealing with the aftermath of the Great War, this is a must for any fan of historical fiction.
When it comes to nonfiction, you don’t get more fascinating than a talk by one of the country’s best-loved poets, Simon Armitage, on 26th September. He will talk about his new nonfiction title, Walking Away. The book looks back on his travels along the coastal fringes of the southwest, doing poetry readings in exchange for food and shelter.
And let’s not forget the children’s events: your little ones are spoilt for choice with not one but two bestselling authors. Firstly, Tracy Beaker fans will be desperate to attend a talk by the beloved Jacqueline Wilson on 27th September, when she will chat about her two latest releases, The Butterfly Club and Katy, a modern-day reimagining of the classic What Katy Did stories. Those who’ve enjoyed not only his books but also the stage and screen adaptations of War Horse might be interested in the Write on Kew Michael Morpurgo event, where the author will discuss his new title about a man who could have stopped World War II, An Eagle in the Snow.
All these events are individually priced, but discounts are available if you book in advance and even greater discounts if you’re a Friend of Kew under their membership scheme. As well as securing you a seat at your chosen event, a ticket also allows you access to the breathtaking grounds at Kew.
For further details and information on even more author events, please visit the Write on Kew page at the Kew Gardens website.