Two blackly comic writers talk about a zombie romcom, Dead Romantic, and a family where it’s really weird if you are not a cannibal, The Savages. Fans of Charlie Brooker and Warm Bodies, this is one for you.
Supposing you’re fed up of romantic rejection and you happen to have a chemistry genius friend? Would you think about making your own dead boyfriend? In Dead Romantic, two friends decide to have a go. Cue the best ZomRomCom around. CJ Skuse has a black and biting streak of comedy in all her fiction – Pretty Bad Things was great and Rockoholic was even better. Dead Romantic is her best yet.
Also on stage is Matt Whyman, author of the highly acclaimed Boy Kills Man, among other books. Matt is an agony uncle for Bliss and Radio 1, and he has written a darkly comic novel called The Savages. If your family were cannibals, would you really bring home a vegetarian boyfriend? Even one as handsome and charming as Jack? Probably not. Is this the first Cannibal RomCom?
CJ and Matt are bound to have a lot in common. If you like your comedy black, you’ll enjoy this one.
Henry fathered four living children, Henry Fitzroy, Edward, Mary and Elizabeth, each by a different mother. Their interrelationships were often scarred by jealousy, mutual distrust, sibling rivalry, even hatred. Possessed of quick wits and strong wills, their characters were defined partly by the educations they received, and partly by events over which they had no control. Introduced by SJ Parris.
An intriguing journey of dissonance in science, in nature and in music: how composers have employed it from Baroque music to Rock feedback; how medicine harnesses it to shatter kidney stones and treat cancer; and even how the military uses it in (real and rumoured) weapons. Chaired by Clemency Burton-Hill.
Is the UK on the verge of breaking up? Scotland has its referendum in 2014, Wales is seeking further powers from Westminster, and local government in England is being strengthened. Silk, Commission on Devolution in Wales, Allen, Chair of the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee, and Wyn Jones, Director of the Wales Governance Centre, discuss. Chaired by the BBC's Brian Meechan.
Sally Gardner and Nick Lake have won major awards for fiction – the Costa and the Printz. They are joined by newcomer Alexia Casale to talk about themes in YA fiction and whether readers need happy endings.
Sally Gardner is a highly acclaimed writer of award winning fiction such as I, Coriander, The Red Necklace and most recently the Costa-winning Maggot Moon, currently shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.
Alexia Casale’s debut The Bone Dragon is a blend of psychological thriller and fairytale in which the boundaries between fact and fantasy are very fragile.
Nick Lake has just won the prestigious Printz award for In Darkness, also shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and has a highly acclaimed new novel out called Hostage Three.
Don’t miss this opportunity to hear three extremely talented writers answer questions about their work, and to ask some questions of your own.
Is erotica changing the literary landscape? Gemmell (The Bride Stripped Bare), Magnanti (Belle de Jour series, televised as Secret Diary of a Call Girl) and Moyes (Me Before You) talk to Kelsey, GH contributor and ex-editor of Cosmopolitan. We’ve been going to bed with them for years. Isn’t it time we were seen together in public?
Football has always been a numbers game: 4-4-2, the big number 9 and 3 points for a win. But what if up until now we’ve been focusing on the wrong numbers? What if the numbers that really matter, the ones that hold the key to winning matches, are actually 2.66, 53.4, 50/50, and 0 > 1? What if managers only make a 15% difference? What if Chelsea should have bought Darren Bent? Chaired by Gooner Clemency Burton-Hill.
Socrates’ trial and death together form an iconic moment in Western civilization. The picture we have of it – created by his immediate followers and perpetuated in countless works of literature and art ever since – is that a noble man was put to death in a fit of folly by the ancient Athenian democracy. But an icon, an image, is not reality.
The £189m Library of Birmingham opens in September this year, and will be the largest public library in Europe. It will provide a showcase for the city’s internationally important collections of archives, photography and rare books, a gallery space, a new flexible studio theatre, an outdoor amphitheatre and two garden terraces. The Project Director, architect and the Deputy Leader of Birmingham City Council will discuss bringing this ambitious project to fruition.