Fantastic line-up of authors for the 10th Chiswick Book Festival

The Chiswick Book Festival celebrates its tenth year in September with a stellar line-up of authors: Anthony Horowitz, Kate Mosse, Joanna Trollope, Max Hastings, Charles Spencer, Charles Cumming, Roger McGough and Julian Clary amongst others.

Anthony Horowitz, long known to teenage readers for his Alex Rider spy thrillers, has just published his second James Bond novel using original material by Ian Fleming. Forever and a Day is a prequel to Casino Royale, Fleming’s first 007 novel, and explores the origins of the world’s most famous secret agent.

‘M laid down his pipe and stared at it tetchily. “We have no choice. We’re just going to bring forward this other chap you’ve been preparing. But you didn’t tell me his name.”

“It’s Bond, sir,” the Chief of Staff replied.

“James Bond.”’

I’m looking forward to hearing how he approached the task of forming the character of James Bond. Such a huge responsibility!

Not just a new book but a new series …

Looking forward also to reading Kate Mosse’s new novel The Burning Chambers, not only a new book, (I’ve enjoyed all her others), but the beginning of a new series of historical novels spanning three hundred years of Huguenot history.

Joanna Trollope has just published her 21st novel, An Unsuitable Match, about the impact on two families when a couple marry, each for the second time, in later life.

Historian Max Hastings will have his new book on the history of Vietnam published in the autumn. Charles Spencer, 9th Earl Spencer and brother of Diana, Princess of Wales, is also a prolific history writer. His latest book is To Catch A King: Charles II’s Great Escape.

Charles Cumming is also one of my favourite authors. His latest spy thriller The Man Between is about a novelist who is drawn into the intelligence world and soon finds himself out of his depth.

Roger McGough, one of Britain’s best-loved poets for both adults & children, is so prolific he will probably have knocked out a few more books by the autumn, but his latest poetry book at time of writing is That Awkward Age and, for children, The Imaginary Menagerie with illustrations by the author.

From scandalous stand-up to children’s author

Julian Clary I only know as a deliciously acerbic and very rude stand up comic, but he too has reinvented himself as a children’s author with his stories about The Bolds, a family of hyenas who disguise themselves as humans and live in Teddington, where he himself grew up. In his latest book The Bolds are In Trouble:

‘it isn’t always easy hiding tails and fur under clothes, and it’s important not to raise suspicion amongst their human neighbours. But trouble soon comes skulking when a very sly fox starts making a big nuisance of himself…’

Looking at his Twitter account he is also having to reinvent himself as a jam maker: ‘My gooseberry crop has rather exceeded expectations. I was only expecting a handful. Now what to do? Must I become a jam maker? This is not what I hoped for’.

He does make me laugh. Maybe Chiswick’s jam makers at Abundance London can come to his aid.

Roll on September – it may be worthwhile coming back from the seaside after all. Jo James, who books the authors, and Torin Douglas, the Director have done a stonking job. Torin has written a guest blog about how the Book Festival has grown from small beginnings, which you can see on The Chiswick Calendar website.