You know you are a dedicated book nerd when your favorite day of the year is the day the program for your local book festival is announced. Lucky for me, I live in Edinburgh and the Edinburgh Book Festival is truly top notch.
I don’t want to bore you with who I’m not going to go see (George R.R. Martin and Haruki Murakami for two), so let’s take a look at those on my must see list:
- Herman Koch because I loved The Dinner, and Summer House With Swimming Pool wasn’t half bad. I really want to see how his mind works.
- Emma Healey because I need to know how someone so young could write something as brilliant, sensitive and insightful as Elizabeth Is Missing.
- Christos Tsiolkas because he tends to court controversy in his novels, so I think it will be a rollicking talk about Barracuda, his latest novel.
- Nina Stibbe – her memoir Love, Nina has been on my TBR list since it came out and she will be here to talk about her debut novel.
- Sarah Waters because, you know, she’s Sarah Waters. And she has a new book coming out – The Paying Guests.
And then there are quite a few writers who are on my maybe list. August is a rather busy month for me, so I may not be able to fit them all in. If you’ve seen any of the writers, or have strong feelings about who I should or shouldn’t go see, let me know.
- Naomi Wood – it is quite likely I will go to this one where she will be talking about Mrs. Hemingway.
- Meena Kandasamy. I just got her book The Gypsy Goddess out of the library. I will go see her depending on what I think of the book. But I am a sucker for South Asian novels, especially when they’re based on reality. She will be appearing with Kader Abdolah, who I know nothing about.
- Linda Grant. I’ve never read anything by her, but feel I should. Where would I begin?
- Maggie O’Farrell. She lives in Edinburgh, so surely I’ll have another chance to see her, right?
- Damon Galgut – great South African writer who I’ve never read. Who knows when I’ll be able to see him again?
And there are a whole host of others I’m interested in as well.
- Anne Blankman and Audrey Magee
- Peter Buwalda
- Kamila Shamsie
- Neel Mukherjee
- Rana Dasgupta
What do you think? Where would you put your time and money?
Sounds amazing! So many good writers… I wouldn’t know where to start. I would maybe be curious to try a few I had never heard of.
But there are so many I have heard of that I want to see! Every morning there is a 10 minute reading from a random writer and that’s a good place to hang out. It could be someone big like Murakami or it could be someone who is new to me.
Sounds like it will be great – can’t wait to hear about it all! Perfect picks and I would totally add Naomi Wood, I just adored Mrs. Hemingway.
We’ll now that she’s won the Uncovered prize I think I have to go.
Stopping by from Steadfast Reader–I’m in the middle of reading Summer House With Swimming Pool right now. I would love to hear Koch speak! I’d love to know how he creates such disagreeable characters, yet writes about them so you’re compelled to keep reading anyway.
Love, Nina is on my TBR list–just waiting for it to come in at the library.
Yeah, I think Koch will be a highlight for sure.
Ahh! Sounds lovely! I’m jealous 🙂 I haven’t read Naomi Wood yet, but did manage to snag a copy of Mrs. Hemingway at BEA- and I eagerly look forward to sitting down and reading it! I’ll also be eagerly looking forward to who you get to see & the whole experience!
I haven’t read Mrs Hemingway yet either, but I will. Wood is also doing a one hour study of The Sun Also Rises, which might be neat.
That’s an amazing line up. Just don’t tell Monika over at A Lovely Bookshelf that you’re skipping out on Murakami. 🙂 I can’t wait to hear your thoughts Koch!
Also, why did I think you were in Canada?
Because i’m a displaced Canadian. We’ve lived in Scotland for just over 2 years, but I still think of Canada as home.
Ah, ha! I’m glad I wasn’t completely losing my mind. 🙂
Those are some really great writers! I love the sound of the festival. I will definitely go see Herman Koch too, if I could attend the festival. If you find out how his mind works, please let us know – some seriously ingenious and devilish stuff (in a good way) come out of there!
I know. I just want a little insight into how he thinks. I have the impression that he is a nice guy who can write not nice, but extremely interesting characters. And I will be writing up all my book fest experiences.
Wow, so many great authors are going to be there! I love book festivals because so many amazing people are gathered in the same place 😛 I hope you have fun and discover a lot of great new reads!
IFOA is a great festival too, but Toronto also has so many free events. I always like the Appel Salon program through the TPL, and of course Luminato and Word on the Street.
What an exciting event! So many wonderful options to choose from.
And those were only my top choices. Many more to choose from
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I think you’ve picked excellent authors, though I’d have to add Murakami to my own list. So very jealous of you, my green eyes are reflecting in the screen as I write this 🙂 -Tania
I’ve never even read Murakami. My plan is to try something by him this summer, but I’ve never been attracted to his books.