Theakstons Isn’t Just a Beer

This week I’m off to the Theakstons Old Peculiar Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate. It runs from the 16th-19th July in various locations around this pretty Yorkshire town and is one of the few literary festivals dedicated solely to crime writing. Pick of the interviews, in my opinion, is Lucy Gardner in conversation with Ann Cleaves. Lucy is a prolific crime writer with over 20 books to her name and Anne Cleaves is the well-known author of the Vera Stanhope books and the basis for the ITV series Vera, starring Brenda Blethyn.

The books shortlisted for the Theakstones Old Peculiar Crime Novel of the Year are:

Belinda Bauer – The Facts of Life and Death

Ray Celestin – The Axeman’s Jazz

Elly Griffiths – The Outcast Dead

Sarah Hilary – Someone Else’s Skin

Antonia Hodgson – The Devil in The Marshalsea

Peter May – Entry Island

Ray Celestin should win for having a book cover that looks like a beer bottle label, something that should appeal to the sponsors if not the judges. I’ve read The Outcast Dead and Entry Island is my holiday read, so I don’t feel qualified to comment although I do think Peter May is a fine writer and if I had a vote he’d get it.

The pic is Radio 4’s Jenni Murray being interviewed by novelist Tess Gerritsen a few years back.

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