Not long now until the fifth Colonsay Book Festival which will take place on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th April. Opening with our first ever Fringe event, rapper and performance poet Ewan McNicholl (son of Liz and Mike) will be on in the Hotel on Friday 22nd, at 9pm.

The main business of the festival starts at 1.30 on Saturday in the village hall, with nature writer and poet Jim Crumley, followed at 3pm by eminent military historian Hew Strachan, who has written widely about the First World War. The final session of the afternoon, at 4.30, has noted Tartan Noir writer, Denise Mina, in conversation about her many crime books, including the latest – ‘Blood, Salt, Water’.

The Saturday evening entertainment again takes place in the Hotel; we are bringing back our literary pub quiz, which was memorably won by the authors’ team in 2014.

Sunday sessions open at 10.30 in the hotel lounge, with a workshop run by writer Mike Smith entitled “Hearing Your Words/Reading Your Listeners”. Participants are asked to bring along three pieces of writing of any genre, 4-6 copies of each. (Prose 250-500 words, poetry max. 40 lines.)

Travel writer Julie Davidson opens the afternoon session at 1.30, with a conversation about her book ‘Looking for Mrs Livingstone’; that is Mary, wife of the missionary David.

At 3pm,  the Cumbrian poet Jacob Polley will read from his three collections of poetry, and also some new, unpublished work. Finally, the festival ends with the veteran broadcaster and journalist, now novelist, James Naughtie discussing his latest book, ‘Paris Spring’, which will be published just before the Festival.

We close with our now traditional ‘Conversations @ the End’, when audience and authors chat over a glass of wine or beer, kindly provided by the Colonsay Brewery, before heading for the ferry.

We look forward to seeing many of our regular audience members again, as well as welcoming new ones. Tickets can be bought at the door, but accommodation is booking up fast, so don’t miss out!

Dilly Emslie

You can find out more about the Book Festival by visiting their website:

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