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09 September 2012
Colonsay Book Festival 2013 Line-up announced

September 2012

- Hebridean literary weekend to be headlined by top crime writer Ian Rankin -

Following a highly successful first event in April 2012, the organisers of the Colonsay Book Festival are delighted to announce a stellar line-up for 2013.

The second outing of this fledgling festival on the idyllic Isle of Colonsay in the Inner Hebrides will take place over the weekend of 26-28 April 2013, with the internationally-renowned crime writer, Ian Rankin, topping the bill. Also appearing are Candia McWilliam, John Burnside, Sara Sheridan, Maggie Fergusson and Angus Peter Campbell.

The news comes just months after Colonsay played host to Scotland’s Makar Liz Lochhead, Alexander McCall Smith, James Robertson, Margaret Elphinstone, Kenneth Steven and Sophie Cooke for the inaugural book festival weekend.

Dilly Emslie, Director of the Colonsay Book Festival, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to have secured such a terrific line-up for our 2013 event and there’s great excitement on the island in anticipation of another unforgettable literary weekend next spring. This year’s inaugural book festival surpassed all our expectations and 2013 is shaping up to be just as successful.”

Ian Rankin, the UK’s best-selling crime writer, publishes “Standing in Another Man’s Grave” in November 2012, and to the delight of all his readers, brings back John Rebus in this, his 25th anniversary year. Rebus is now working for the Cold Case Unit, and his enquiries bring him up against Rankin’s other fictional protagonist, Malcolm Fox, of the Internal Affairs Unit.

Candia McWilliam, who has long connections with the Isle of Colonsay, first came to public notice with her novels “A Case of Knives” (1988) and “A Little Stranger” (1989). “Debatable Land” (1994) won the Guardian Fiction Prize, and, in 1998, its Italian translation won the Premio Grinzane Cavour for the best foreign novel of the year. Mostly recently, she published “What To Look For In Winter: A Memoir In Blindness” (2010).

John Burnside is an acclaimed poet, novelist and non-fiction writer. A Fifer, his collections of poetry have won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize and the Whitbread Poetry Award, and in 2011 “Black Cat Bone” won both the Forward Prize and the TS Eliot Prize. In 2006, his memoir, “A Lie About My Father”, was given both the Saltire Society Book of the Year and the Scottish Arts Council Non-Fiction Book of the Year Awards. His novels include “The Devil’s Footprints”, “Glister” and “A Summer of Drowning”.

Sara Sheridan is a prolific young Edinburgh writer of work ranging from books for children of all ages to historical adventures (including “The Secret Mandarin” and “The Secret of the Sands”), and most recently, crime fiction. Her latest book, “Brighton Belle” (2012), is the first in a series of ‘cosy crime noir’ set in the Brighton of the 1950s, and featuring the feisty private detective, Mirabelle Bevan.

Maggie Fergusson has been a journalist, and is the Director of the Royal Society of Literature. Her book, “George Mackay Brown: The Life” (2006), won the Saltire Society Award for a First Book. She recently published “Michael Morpurgo: War Child to War Horse” (2012), a unique collaboration in which Maggie’s seven biographical chapters are matched by seven autobiographical stories by Morpurgo.

Angus Peter Campbell is a noted Gaelic poet and novelist, and also a journalist, broadcaster and actor. Originally from South Uist, he now lives in Skye. In 2001 he was awarded the Bardic Crown and also given a Creative Scotland Award. His latest collection, “Aibisidh”, was shortlisted for this year’s Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Book Award. He has also collaborated with the photographer Cailean Maclean on a TV programme for BBC Alba on walking through the Hebrides.


"To say this is a BRILLIANT festival - simply the best - is not to say too much. …I'm going to become one of those Colonsay recidivists, D.V. Thank You!" Liz Lochhead

"This has been a terrific festival. I'm very privileged to be among the first authors to come to the Colonsay Book Festival. It's been a great atmosphere, with much good talk, lively debate, and it was a huge pleasure to hear the other authors." Margaret Elphinstone

"This was a wonderful start to a literary festival that I am sure will become one of the most enjoyable festivals on offer. Everything worked so well and the atmosphere was extraordinarily friendly." Alexander McCall Smith


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