2015 Events Toggle

Fri 24 Apr, 2015 - 10.30am

Why Historical Fiction?

Speaker:

Allan Massie is a prolific novelist, an historian and reviewer, as well as a lively and controversial journalist whose work appears in a variety of British newspapers. His Roman biographies include books about Augustus, Tiberius and Caesar.

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Fri 24 Apr, 2015 - 11.45am

The Vespasian Chronicles

Speaker:

After reading drama and theatre at university, Robert Fabbri worked in film and television for 25 years. A lifelong passion for ancient history – and the sensible advice that he should write the kind of books he wanted to read – inspired his Vespasian novels.

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Fri 24 Apr, 2015 - 3.15pm

Discovering the truth about Jean Armour, aka Mrs Robert Burns

Speaker:

Novelist and award-winning playwright Catherine Czerkawska, whose novel The Curiosity Cabinet was shortlisted for the 2005 Dundee Book Prize, tells us about her quest to find out the real story of Jean Armour, the long-suffering wife of Robert Burns, and the central character in her upcoming novel, The Jewel.

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Fri 24 Apr, 2015 - 4.30pm

Dalriada: A Romance of Invention

Speaker:

Weaving history with cinematic flourishes, Darlriada is a steam-age Waverley, set at the start of World War I, in the Scotland that Germany’s leaders mistakenly wrote off as irrelevant. It’s an experiment in extreme situations, where morale and technology intersect, and airmen, soliders and politicians are forced to calculate the outcomes of their decisions using changing, unreliable data.

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Sat 25 Apr, 2015 - 10.30am

The deadly true story behind one of World War I’s best-kept secrets

Speaker:

It’s August, 1917, and Britain is mired in a bloody stalemate on the Western Front. Questions are being asked in government about the leadership of the army. . . This is the setting for The Suicide Club, which finds soldier-spy Sandy Innes working inside Field Marshal Haig’s HQ in France, preparing agents for the next big push.

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Sat 25 Apr, 2015 - 11.45am

Queering History

Panel Discussion

The past 20 years have seen a boom in historical fiction about LGBT lives. From Brokeback Mountain to Tipping the Velvet, versions of history are being written that focus on more than just straight, cisgender protagonists.

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Sat 25 Apr, 2015 - 3.15pm

Tales of derring-do in Elizabethan England

Speaker:

The first comic to sell out Wembly stadium, Rob Newman is one of comedy’s most recognizable practitioners, but he’s an equally accomplished novelist. His fourth book, The Trade Secret, is set in Elizabethan England, during its Golden Age of trade and art, when poets and merchants packed the city’s teeming streets.

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Sat 25 Apr, 2015 - 4.30pm

Waterloo: fact and fiction

Speaker:

This summer marks the bicentenary of the battle of Waterloo which marked both the final defeat of Napoleon and the creation of modern Europe. Iain Gale, well known for his fictional writing on the Napoleonic wars, and author of a new historical account of a key moment of the battle, the charge of the Scots Greys, offers an insight into the different challenges in writing about Waterloo as fact and fiction.

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Sat 25 Apr, 2015 - 6.00pm

What next for the Comptroller-General?

Chaired by Andrew Williams

Speaker:

In the third of his acclaimed Comptrollerate-General espionage thrillers, The Spider of Sarajevo, Robert Wilton peers into the shadows to discover the political machinations and dangers lurking there in the final weeks before the outbreak of World War I.

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Sun 26 Apr, 2015 - 10.30am

The story behind Wake

Speaker:

One of the most talked-about debuts of 2014, Anna Hope’s Wake is centres around the journey home of the Unknown Soldier as he makes his way from the battlefields of Northern France.

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Sun 26 Apr, 2015 - 11.45am

Inventing “Cosy Noir”

Speaker:

Set during the heat-wave of 1953, England Expects finds sophisticated sleuth Mirabelle Bevan investigating the seemingly unrelated murders of a racing journalist and a cleaning woman. Aided by her plucky assistant Vesta, Bevan chases clues from the Brighton Pavilion to a Cambridge quad, and in the process, tumbles headlong into the shady underworld of Brighton freemasonry.

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Sun 26 Apr, 2015 - 3.15pm

The Defender of Rome series

Speaker:

Dubbed “one of the best historical novelists writing today” by the Daily Express, Douglas Jackson is a former newspaperman who wrote his first book during the journey to and from work.

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Sun 26 Apr, 2015 - 4.30pm

Circuses and Suffragettes

Speaker:

One of the Scottish Book Trust’s new writers of 2014, and a finalist for the Costa Short Story Prize, Lucy Ribchester also writes about dance and the circus. Her debut novel, The Hourglass Factory, takes us to London in 1912, straight into a world populated by suffragettes and circus performers, journalists and cut-throats.

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