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Monday, August 18, 2008

They have book festivals in Ireland, too

The Irish Independent on Sunday features "A fizzy festival to put Dublin on the literary map."

Well, not quite. The fare at Sunday Independent's Books 2008, which will take place September 5 to 7, caters for a much wider taste in books than the usual highminded literary festival. Designed to attract a "mass audience," with guests such as Marilyn Keyes (pictured), it is bound to do just that.

As Alison Walsh reports, Bert Wright, organiser of the Hughes and Hughes Irish Book Awards, and Books 2008 director, has pulled out all the stops to deliver a popular, glamorous programme designed to appeal to wide-ranging tastes. He says, "All the literary festivals just play to the literary set ... rarely to they include really popular writers," and so he decided to make the event "more popular and accessible."

Accordingly, it's a programme that will appeal to every reader imaginable, opening with Marilyn Keyes, and moving on through Hugo Hamilton and Joseph O'Connor to Martin Amis. And, in accordance with the current surge in popularity of mystery fiction, there will be a plethora of crime writers, including Booker winner John Banville, who now lurks as crime writer Benjamin Black.

1 comment:

Local Reader said...

In New Zealand, literary festivals certainly are organised by and for the literary set - but at Cheltenham, Edinburgh and Hay-on-Wye, to name but three, festivals have very strong representation from popular writers, children's writers, and TV and stage entertainers. It wouldn't do us any harm to loosen up in this direction either.