The jewel in the crown of the bookseller's calendar is their annual spring festival, which promises plenty of fascinating events.
While sipping wine, slurping hot chocolate or nibbling on snacks, those who visit this year's Daunt Books Festival can listen to some incredible speakers. Read on to find out who we're most excited to hear from.
On love and loss in Modern China: Xinran
After rising to fame in ‘90s China as a radio presenter, Xuē Xīnrán (who goes by her pen name Xinran) relocated to London and became an internationally renowned journalist.
Her breakout, bestselling book, The Good Women of China, drew on years of interviews she’d conducted with women in China to paint a nuanced picture of the oppression they face in the world’s most populous country. Since then, she’s written six more books, while contributing to The Guardian on topics such as the high female suicide rate in China and the one-child policy.
In conversation with Paul French – author of the blog China Rhyming – Xinran will discuss her latest book The Promise, which plots the relationships of a single family over four generations, against the backdrop of rapid social change in China.
On coming of age with a father who's a spy: Charlotte Bingham
A legend of the historical romance scene, the honourable Charlotte Bingham has written over 40 novels – often publishing two a year in the 00s. Yet she began her career with a light-hearted memoir, Coronet Among the Weeds, about her attempts to find her future husband among the ‘weeds, drips and leches’ of the upper classes. She was just 20 when it was published.
Bingham’s most recent book, MI5 and Me: A Coronet Among the Spooks, builds on that early memoir, and reveals how much was going on behind the scenes: at 18, Bingham was called into her father’s office and informed that he was in fact a fairly senior spy.
Ticketholders are invited to grab a glass of wine and listen to Bingham reflect on a career that’s spanned almost six decades.
On global displacement: Fatima Bhutto
Born in Kabul to an Afghan mother and an exiled Pakistani father, Fatima Bhutto spent much of her childhood in Syria, meaning she writes from a uniquely multicultural perspective.
The journalist and author rose to fame in 2010 with her memoir Songs of Blood and Sword. The story followed the murder of Bhutto’s father, who was killed by police in Karachi when she was 14. Since then, she has accused her own aunt and husband of being involved in the crime.
In conversation with the bestselling Turkish writer Elif Shafak, Bhutto will discuss her latest novel, The Runaways, which draws on the themes of displacement, belonging and social injustice that she’s explored in much of her writing.
These authors will be joined by many other fascinating guests, including William Boyd, who’s authored a Bond novel as well as multiple screenplays, and the novelists Tessa Hadley and Andrew Miller will also be speaking.
Read more about the programme here
|What||Daunt Books Festival 2019|
|Where||Daunt Books Marylebone High St, 83 Marylebone High St, London, W1U 4QW | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Marylebone (underground)|
14 Mar 19 – 15 Mar 19, 9:00 AM – 7:30 PM
|Website||Click here for more information|