A conversation about the extraordinary biography that won the 2018 Costa Award. Little Lien wasn’t taken from her Jewish parents – she was given away in the hope that she might be saved. Hidden and raised by a foster family in Amsterdam during the Nazi occupation, she survived the war only to find that her real parents had not. Much later, she fell out with her foster family, and Bart van Es, the grandson of Lien’s foster parents, knew he needed to find out why. His account of tracing Lien and telling her story is a searing exploration of two lives and two families. It is a story about love and misunderstanding and about the ways that our most painful experiences, so crucial in defining us, can also be redefined. Philippe Sands’ East West Street won the 2017 Baillie Gifford Prize for non-fiction.
How do you create a compelling adventure that keeps readers guessing? Join bestselling authors Emma Carroll and Lisa Thompson as they discuss building suspense and keeping readers hooked in their page-turning stories including Secrets of a Sun King and The Day I Was Erased. Chaired by Darren Chetty.
From the genetics of insects and groundbreaking x-ray technology to measuring the world’s forests with lasers, three Royal Society Research Fellows discuss their work at the forefront of science with neuroscientist and broadcaster Hannah Critchlow.
Following his hugely celebrated debut novel, The Yellow Birds, Powers returns to the battlefield and its aftermath, this time in his native Virginia, just before and during the Civil War and then 90 years later. The novel pinpoints with unerring emotional depth the nature of random violence, the necessity of love and compassion, and the fragility and preciousness of life.
News about Britain’s wildlife and ecosystems tends to be grim. The Oxford economist and Natural Capital Committee chair Dieter Helm shares his radical but tangible plan for positive change. This pragmatic approach to environmentalism includes a summary of Britain’s green assets, a look towards possible futures and an achievable 25-year plan for a green and prosperous country.
Seventy years after the establishment of the People’s Republic of China, and thirty years on from the Tiananmen Square massacre, the editor of Index on Censorship hosts a debate about China’s contemporary society and the leadership’s attitude to freedom of expression. Xinran is author of the global bestseller The Good Women of China, based on her groundbreaking radio show. Her latest book is The Promise. Karoline Kan is a former New York Times reporter who writes about millennial life and politics in China. She’s currently an editor at China Dialogue. Her new book is called Under Red Skies: The Life and Times of a Chinese Millennial.
The launch of a new literary biography of the younger Pliny, who grew up to become a lawyer, senator, poet, collector of villas, curator of drains and personal representative of the emperor overseas. Counting the historian Tacitus, biographer Suetonius and poet Martial among his close friends, Pliny the Younger chronicled his experiences from the catastrophic eruption through the dark days of terror under Emperor Domitian to the gentler times of Emperor Trajan.
Words, old or new, are gifts for changing the world. Last year, Andrea Marcolongo published a book about the subject that engrosses her the most. La lingua geniale: 9 ragioni per amare il greco deals with the importance of the language of ancient Greece for the present day. She will talk to the writer Juan Esteban Constaín.
Simultaneous translation from Italian to Spanish available
The writer of poetry, fiction and prose, poetry educator, founder and artistic director of Out-Spoken will read new work that explores identity, race, history and gender.
Fiction provides children with an important space to learn how to make sense of the world. It is also a crucial source for role models. Fictional worlds are not so unlike the real world – especially when it comes to gender inequalities. Based on their work with large collections of texts, Professor Mahlberg and Dr Cermakova from the University of Birmingham's Centre for Corpus Research will explore fiction from Dickens to modern children's books, to demonstrate how repeated language patterns reflect a gendered view of society.