Famous writers in Harrogate for Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival

Crime writer Val McDermid at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate.
Crime writer Val McDermid at the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate.

Today, Thursday the the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate welcomes the world’s biggest celebration of the crime writing genre.

Running until Sunday, the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival guarantees thrills, and a few spills at the hotel bar.

Coming to Harrogate - Writer Martina Cole.

Coming to Harrogate - Writer Martina Cole.

‘King of the police procedural’ Peter James takes the helm as Programming Chair.

Audiences are invited to grab a pint of Yorkshire’s finest ale, and dip into an intoxicating mix of comedy, heated debate and scintillating socialising.

The festival is famed for its no barriers approach. Readers and authors alike meet their heroes, as well as the Next Big Things, thanks to McDermid’s annual New Blood panel, which cherry picks the best debut novels of the year.

The event features the 12th Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Awards in partnership with WHSmith and the Radio Times.

Special Guests at the 14th festival include Jeffery Deaver in conversation with BBC broadcaster Mark Lawson, Martina Cole will be chatting to Peter James, Linwood Barclay will be put under the forensic spotlight by fellow crime author Mark Billingham.

Gerald Seymour will be in conversation with Joe Haddow, Producer of the BBC Radio 2 Book Club, and expect a few killer jokes from Val McDermid with Edinburgh Festival stand-up, Susan Calman. Tess Gerritsen also stars.

The long weekend of panel events will have an international flavour to celebrate the genres global dominance.

The international theme is celebrated with panels such as ‘Murder Out of Africa’ – a country with a reputation for its high crime rate, has produced incredible writers, including South African superstar Deon Meyer.

‘The Bloody French’ sees Bernard Minier join fellow compatriots to examine France’s tradition of crime writing from Emile Zola to Michel Houellebecq.

Closer to home, Girl on a Train author Paula Hawkins, joins Clare Mackintosh and others to explore ‘Domestic Suspense’; novels that are rarely absent from today’s bestseller lists. And spy thriller author Charles Cumming will chair a fascinating panel exploring ‘Political Corruption’ with Gillian Slovo and BBC war correspondent Frank Gardner.

The Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival runs from Thursday, July to Sunday, July 24 at The Old Swan Hotel, Harrogate.

BOX OFFICE: 01423 562 303.

To book: www.harrogateinternationalfestivals.com