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Event 1 An Audience with Alexander McCall Smith

Saturday 3 March, 8pm-9pm   Al Baraha 1, InterContinental

Join us for an hour of mischief, laughter and master storytelling with one of the world’s most prolific and best-loved writers, Alexander McCall Smith. Author of more than 100 books including the internationally bestselling No 1 Ladies Detective Agency, 44 Scotland Street and Corduroy Mansions series, McCall Smith was recently awarded the prestigious Medal of Honor for Achievement in Literature by The National Arts Club of America.

Alexander will be in conversation with Paul Blezard.

Language: English

An Audience with Alexander McCall Smith

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Event 9 Anthony Horowitz: The Word is Murder

Friday 2 March, 4pm-5pm   Al Baraha 3, InterContinental

Wizard of whodunits and master of mysteries, Anthony Horowitz has had a hectic year. He’s even been starring in his own book!

In The Word is Murder, ‘Anthony Horowitz’, busy working on his first Sherlock Holmes novel, agrees to play Watson to Detective Daniel Hawthorne – they will solve a bizarre murder, write a book about it, and split the profits. What could go wrong?

Come and witness Anthony’s rip-roaring storytelling live as he reveals all about a life in detective fiction, from Holmes, to a dark take on vintage crime in The Magpie Murders, to writing for hit TV series Midsomer Murders and Foyle’s War.

Anthony will be in conversation with Kate Mosse.

Language: English

Anthony Horowitz: The Word is Murder

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Event 45 Thriller Night: Yrsa Sigurðardóttir & Shari Lapena

Friday 2 March, 6pm-7pm   Al Baraha 2, InterContinental

Two authors famous for their mastery of suspense unite to talk about how bringing the scares closer to home keeps readers on the edge of their seats.

Shari Lapena’s debut novel The Couple Next Door enjoyed international success as readers were gripped by the mystery of a missing child. Her new novel, A Stranger in the House, explores the darkness underlying domestic bliss.

Yrsa Sigurðardóttir is famous for examining the tensions caused when ordinary people in small communities do horrific things. Her Thóra Gudmundsdóttir series and new novels starring child trauma expert Freyja explore the dark side of human nature.

This panel is moderated by Robert Mitchell.

Language: English

Thriller Night: Yrsa Sigurðardóttir & Shari Lapena

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Event 29 Richard & Judy’s Festival Book Club

Saturday 3 March, 10am-11am   Al Baraha 1, InterContinental

Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan found fame as Britain’s foremost daytime TV duo, and have since become the nation’s favourite book-loving couple.

In this session Richard & Judy meet with their pick of Festival authors for a live Book Club session.

The Panellists:

Kevin Kwan (joining live via video link from LA) is the author of Crazy Rich Asians and its sequels China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems – a satire of Singapore’s uber-wealthy that has been a global hit with readers.

Kate Mosse’s Labyrinth was a standout title in the strong 2006 lineup for the Richard & Judy Book Club and picked up a British Book Award that year. The first novel in her major new historical series, The Burning Chambers, will publish in May 2018.

Shari Lapena’s gripping domestic thriller The Couple Next Door was a Richard & Judy pick in 2017 and bestseller on both sides of the Atlantic; her new book is A Stranger in the House.

This session will be hosted by Peter Dale. 

Language: English

Richard & Judy’s Festival Book Club

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Event 52 Mark Billingham: Love Like Blood

Saturday 3 March, 2pm-3pm   Al Ras 2, InterContinental

Mark Billingham’s ability to tell the most twisted of crime stories through character-driven storytelling has made him one of the biggest names in the genre.

In Love Like Blood, the latest Tom Thorne novel, Thorne takes the biggest risk of his career when he investigates a series of ‘honour’ killings. And in standalone novel Die of Shame, DI Nicola Tanner’s investigation of a killing is hampered by a strict code of confidentiality between the witnesses – one of whom might be the killer.

In this conversation with fellow author Kate Mosse, Mark digs deep into the art of making troubled detectives both believable and appealing.

Language: English

Mark Billingham: Love Like Blood

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Event 48 The Montegrappa Writing Prize: Isobel Abulhoul, Luigi Bonomi, Jessica Jarlvi, Karen Osman

Saturday 3 March, 4pm-5pm   Al Ras 2, InterContinental

Have you always wanted to be an author? It’s time to award the eagerly anticipated 2018 Montegrappa Prize, and if you entered this year then this might just be your breakthrough!

Eight winners to date have secured publishing deals – two past success stories join competition judge Luigi Bonomi to discuss their writing, before 2018’s winners are announced.

Competition entrants can attend the session for free.

Isobel Abulhoul is the Director of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and CEO and Trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation.

Luigi Bonomi is a literary agent and represents authors including Judy Finnigan, Richard Madeley and Alan Titchmarsh.

Jessica Jarlvi is the author of the breathtaking, dark thriller When I Wake Up. Her second book will be published in May 2018.

Karen Osman is the winner of the 2016 prize. Her thriller The Good Mother led to a three-book deal with Head of Zeus publishing.

This session is moderated by Charles Nahhas

Language: English

The Montegrappa Writing Prize: Isobel Abulhoul, Luigi Bonomi, Jessica Jarlvi, Karen Osman

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Event 55 The Horror, The Horror: Joe Hill & Yrsa Sigurðardóttir

Saturday 3 March, 7.30pm-8.30pm   Al Rimal, InterContinental

Horror stories have enthralled readers for centuries: from the penny dreadful to Pennywise to post-millennial zombies, stories that reach into our nightmares can be equally chilling and thrilling. Our panel of horror writers considers what makes us feel fear and why we read books that make us scared to turn out the light!

Joe Hill is the winner of the Locus Award for The Fireman. He is also author of novels Heart Shaped Box, NOS4A2 and Horns, adapted as a cult film starring Daniel Radcliffe.

Yrsa Sigurðardóttir is author of the Thóra Gudmundsdóttir crime series and has also written numerous horror novels, including The Undesired and Silence of the Sea, as well as the creepy new Children’s House series.

This panel is moderated by Christopher Bradley.

Language: English

The Horror, The Horror: Joe Hill & Yrsa Sigurðardóttir

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Event 826 Writing a Page-Turner: Masterclass with Peter James

Friday 9 March, 12.30pm-2pm   Al Rimal, InterContinental

Authors: Peter James
A well-timed cliffhanger, a battle of wills, the mounting tension of an unseen evil on the loose … Peter James knows how to keep readers reading.

In this masterclass, you will learn from the expert how to set pace, build suspense, and keep readers hungry for the next chapter.

The tutor: Peter James is the author of the Roy Grace crime series as well as numerous standalone thrillers. He is a Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller, the winner of the 2016 CWA Diamond Dagger for sustained excellence, and was publicly voted by WHSmith readers The Best Crime Author Of All Time.

Language: English

Writing a Page-Turner: Masterclass with Peter James

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Event 97 Linda Davies: Ark Storm

Friday 9 March, 4pm-5pm   Al Khayma, InterContinental

Authors: Linda Davies
Would you bet on the apocalypse?

In Linda Davies’ techno-thriller Ark Storm, the scientist Gwen Boudain researches deadly storms, while shadowy figures place bets on disasters and plot to weaponise the weather.

Even in the short time since Ark Storm was published, we have seen an increase in extreme weather events. And Linda’s financial thrillers have been similarly prescient, exposing the high-stakes games of the powerful.

In this in-depth conversation, Linda discusses the risks and rewards of writing near-future fiction.

Linda will be in conversation with Natalie Long.

Language: English

Linda Davies: Ark Storm

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Event 104 Peter James: Need You Dead

Saturday 10 March, 10am-11am   Al Baraha 1, InterContinental

Authors: Peter James
Peter James, winner of the CWA Diamond Dagger award, introduces the biggest mystery yet for Detective Superintendent Roy Grace in Need You Dead, as a seemingly simple murder case becomes more sinister with every twist.

The meticulously researched Roy Grace mysteries are a fixture at the top of UK bestseller charts – James will introduce Need You Dead and the thrilling follow-up, due in May 2018. And listen out for exclusive snippets about new stand-alone thriller Absolute Proof, in which an investigative reporter makes a world-changing discovery…

Peter will be in conversation with Lea Sellers.

Language: English

Peter James: Need You Dead

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