Books

Edinburgh and Scotland books

Claire Askew & Thomas Enger, Eurocrime Scribes, EIBF, Review

From Nordic Noir to Tartan Noir, crime writing is a brutal, grisly business across Scandinavia and Scotland.  

Claire Askew from Edinburgh is a poet as well a writer of crime fiction and the Writer in Residence at Edinburgh University. Thomas Enger from Oslo is a former journalist whose Henning Juul books are best selling thrillers, translated and sold in 31 countries. Presenting this event is Scottish crime writer, Russel D. McLean.

Alexander McCall Smith, Criminally Charming, EIBF, Review

The internationally best selling novelist, Alexander McCall Smith hardly needs to be introduced, begins Gavin Esler in conversation with a writer who has out-paced Dickens with over 100 books. His popular series range from The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency and Isobel Dalhousie to 44 Scotland Street and Corduroy Mansions, as well as many stand alone novels and non fiction.

Mariella Frostrup, She's Got a Ticket to Ride, EIBF, Review

Journalist, critic and broadcaster, Mariella Frostrup was born in Norway, brought up in Ireland and now lives in the UK.  With a passion for travel she writes about her journeys for the Telegraph and magazines.  She is the editor of “Wild Women and their Amazing Adventures over land, sea and air,” a 500 page brick of a book – perhaps not easy to pack for your next beach read.!  

The James Tait Black Prizes, 100 Years of Great Writing, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Review

2019 marks the centenary of the inaugural James Tait Black Prizes founded by Janet Tait Black née Coats, in memory of her husband, James and in recognition of his love of great books.  Organised annually by the University of Edinburgh, these are Britain’s longest running literary prizes for biography and fiction, selected by the senior staff of the English Literature Department assisted by a group of their Postgraduate students.

Robin Knox-Johnston, Around the World for 80 Years, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Review

“Once across the Equator and into the South East trade winds ... eventually into the roaring forties of the Southern Ocean. It is a cold, merciless place ravaged by gales and storms … the largest waves on the planet, exceeding 30 metres... a perilous situation.  These were the conditions I had to survive for the next five months.” 

Robin Knox-Johnston, “Running Free” 

After 312 days on board his yacht, Suhaili, on 22 April 1969, Knox-Johnston sailed into Falmouth harbour after the first non stop, solo circumnavigation of the globe.

Hannah Beckerman & Bev Thomas, Gripping Yarns, EIBF, Review

The director and staff at the EIBF should be congratulated on the creative pairing of these two writers whose work shares similar themes for an inspiring discussion. The new novels by Hannah Beckerman and Bev Thomas are both intensely emotional family dramas about strained relationships between parents and their children.

Kate Atkinson, Beside the Seaside, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Review

This sell out event in the New York Times Theatre, Kate Atkinson was in conversation with Lee Randall.

In 1995 Kate Atkinson won the Whitbread Book of the Year prize for her debut novel, “Behind the Scenes at the Museum,” followed by a clutch of eminent awards for her fiction and not least an MBE for services to literature.  “Case Histories” was the first crime novel featuring Jackson Brodie, private investigator and macho action hero but an emotional softie under the skin. 

Alice and the Little Prince, Pleasance, Review

Two characters, separated by time and space meet for the first time in the world-wide premiere of Alice and the Little Prince. Both beloved personas, each belonging to extraordinary tales which capture the imagination of children and represent deep, meaningful reflections of society, friendship and happiness for adults. It’s surprising that this premise isn’t performed more often as it works so well.