Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison are the co-authors of hilarious teen debut Lobsters. Sam and Hannah only have the holidays to find The One. Their ‘lobster’. But instead of being epic, their summer is looking awkward. They must navigate social misunderstandings, the plotting of well-meaning friends, and their own fears of being virgins forever, to find happiness. But fate is at work to bring them together. And in the end, it all boils down to love. Tom and Lucy met in the sixth form and have been friends ever since. Lucy runs online teen magazine Whatever After, as well as teaching in girls’ schools across London specialising in building confidence and creativity. Tom is a journalist and has written for ShortList, TimeOut, Vice, TalkSPORT, ESPN and Viz. Are they lobsters? You’ll have to come along to find out…
13+ years (YA)
What did performances of Shakespeare’s plays sound like in his day? Linguistics professor David Crystal introduces OP (original pronunciation) and marvels at the wonders of the playwright’s revolutionary vocabulary. Molina Foix (who translates Shakespeare for contemporary Spanish theatre) considers the reality that most people in the world discover the great writer’s work in translation.
The writer’s new novel has immigration at its heart. It is the story of Joe’s struggle to save the family-run café in Bryn Mawr that was started before the war by his Italian great-great grandfather. He vows to keep it open, and find out more about his past at the same time, as well as trying to bring a diverse town together through good food and fine times.
Could extinct species, like mammoths and passenger pigeons, be brought back to life? The science says yes. The evolutionary biologist and pioneer in ‘ancient DNA’ research guides us through the astonishing and controversial process of de-extinction. From deciding which species should be restored, to sequencing their genomes, to anticipating how revived populations might be overseen in the wild, Shapiro vividly explores the extraordinary cutting-edge science that is being used to resurrect the past.
The journalist interrogates the ideas of safe space on campus, the psychology of “vindictive protectionism” and the practice of “no-platforming” speakers. In a political culture that is susceptible to polarisation, where social media amplifies grievance and offence, how do we wield free speech? Aaronovitch discusses his lecture with Clemency Burton-Hill. He talks about his memoir Party Animals: My Family and Other Communists on Sunday
How I Live Now was published in 2004 to huge critical acclaim and has been made into a major feature film, starring Saoirse Ronan. Since then, the novelist has produced a spectacular body of work for teenagers and adults, and won numerous awards. She will talk about her writing including her latest novel, the highly acclaimed Picture Me Gone.
12+ years (YA)
An opportunity to discuss the immediate and longer-term challenges that range across his brief with the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Boycott is chair of the London Food Board.
The incredible history of Doggerland, a country now sunk beneath the North Sea, which once, 6,000 years ago, linked the Yorkshire coast with a stretch of Continental Europe from Denmark to Normandy. The submersion of Doggerland was the last time inhabited areas of land were lost because of changes in climate.
The multi-award-winning teen innovator and scientist overcame the skepticism of the academic world, depression and homophobic bullying to invent, at the age of 15, an early-detection test for pancreatic, ovarian, and lung cancers. It has the potential to be over four hundred times more effective than the medical standard and it costs only 5p per use. Chaired by Alice Key.
Photo: Mark Tucker