Belfast Book Festival
This year's programme features 100 events offering an 11-day escape into fiction, comedy, current-day issues and much more
DatesWednesday, 07 June 2017 to Saturday, 17 June 2017
The Belfast Book Festival returns for its seventh edition from June 7 to 17, with over one hundred live events and workshops spanning a huge variety of interests and topical themes. Through authors, music, comedy, poetry, theatre and discussions, the newly-announced programme is set to bring a diverse line-up of local and international talent to the Crescent Arts Centre and partner venues across the city.
Amongst this year's highlights are renowned political scientist, activist, distinguished professor and prolific author Norman Finkelstein, comedian and actress Sara Pascoe, whose debut book Animal explores the forces that mould and affect modern women, and the stars of international smash hit podcast My Dad Wrote a Porno, which recently sold out Sydney Opera House.
Author of the best-selling book Captain Corelli’s Mandolin Louis De Bernieres will also be talking about his latest novel Blue Dog, while audiences can spend a year in the life of Sarah Turner – mum, wife, blogger and best-selling author of The Unmumsy Mum. Elsewhere British author, journalist and political commentator Douglas Murray discusses his book The Strange Death of Europe, stand-up comedian and author Luisa Omielan asks 'What Would Beyonce Do?', poet Kayo Chingonyi will read from his new collection Kumukanda, which explores issues of race, identity and masculinity, and local actor and author Ciaran McMenamin talks about his acclaimed debut novel Skintown.
This year also sees the launch of the inaugural Mairtin Crawford Award. Aimed at poets working towards their first full collection, the winner will receive a 6-month mentorship, which will support the poet to grow artistically and develop professionally. The award has been organised in association with Moyra Donaldson and has received support from the Irish Writer’s Centre The book festival will also pay tribute to and celebrate the much missed poet at a special event during the festival.
Naturally, the theme of Brexit and its associated issues around immigration and political uncertainty are present in this year's programme, with guest authors and journalists including Polly Toynbee, David Walker and Gary Younge. Feminist writers in both fiction and non-fiction also feature, as well as discussions around related issues. A key highlight, in association with the Woman’s Equality Party Northern Ireland, is Catherine Mayer, who is a co-founder of the Women’s Equality Party and former editor at large of TIME magazine.
The Belfast Book Festival, in partnership with Belfast City Council, invites families to discover the merry old land of Oz on June 10 from 11am – 3pm at Lower Crescent Park. Featuring children’s authors storytelling, games, lots of entertainment and of course books – this jam packed family fun day is free to attend.
For full details of the Belfast Book Festival programme and ticket booking visit www.belfastbookfestival.com. Stay up to date on social media by following the festival on Facebook and Twitter #BelfastBook.