Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Ennis Book Club Festival 2009

Ennis Bookclub Festival 2009The Ennis Book Club Festival 2009, in association with Clare County Library, will take place in the County Clare capital from 6-8 March next. The festival programme will feature visits, readings, lectures and workshops by internationally acclaimed authors, along with drama, musical entertainment and chocolate tasting. Contributors include John Boyne, author of The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas; Mark O’Halloran, award winning writer and actor; Salley Vickers, best selling British novelist and author of Miss Garnet’s Angel; John Breen, author of Alone It Stands; Jennifer Johnston, Booker Prize nominated writer; and Allan Guthrie, Scottish crime novelist. Other festival participants include Gerard Donovan; author of the Booker Prize nominated Schopenhauer's Telescope; Aifric Campbell, author of The Semantics of Murder; Órfhlaith Foyle, critically acclaimed poet and author of the debut novel Belios; Gerard Stembridge; novelist, film director, playwright and co-author of the satirical radio show Scrap Saturday; and travel writer Manchán Magan.

One of the highlights of the weekend will be the Sunday Symposium during which the theme of "Reading Politics" will be explored by journalist and political analyst Conor O’Clery, Public Relations consultant Terry Prone and Labour politician Michael D. Higgins. Elsewhere, journalist and broadcaster Kevin Myers and Maria Dickenson, head of book buying in Eason will host “10 books you should read”; Georgina Byrne, of South Dublin Libraries, will discuss e-books; author/TV producer Anna Heussaff will present a workshop on enriching your Book Club; broadcaster and author Denis Sampson will discuss his book on John McGahern, entitled Outstaring Nature’s Eye, and broadcaster and journalist Rachael English will chair an interview and reading session with John Boyne and Salley Vickers.

Poetry will also feature prominently at the festival. Winner of the Rooney prize for Irish Literature, Medbh McGuckian; founder member of Aosdána and winner of the Marten Toonder prize for Literature, Micheal O'Siadhail, awarded an Irish American Cultural Institute prize for poetry in 1982 and in 1998 the Marten Toonder prize for Literature; Dublin-based Russian poet, Anatoly Kudryavitsky; winner of the 2003 Cúirt Festival Poetry Grand Slam, Kevin Higgins; and poet and dramatist Rita Ann Higgins, whose many accolades include the Peadar O’Donnell Award, will all delight and challenge their audiences during the Festival.

Meanwhile, students from Trinity College Dublin will stage an exclusive performance of “The Trial of Oscar Wilde” at Ennis Courthouse. The only other enactment of the trial, which led to Wilde’s public disgrace and two year imprisonment for acts of "gross indecency”, was held at Trinity College in April. The festival launch will include a "giant book club gathering" featuring a mass reading and discussion of “The book of Lost Things" by Irish novelist John Connolly. The festival presents a unique opportunity for book club members from Ireland and beyond to get together to share their joy of reading, to meet authors, to discuss books, and to have a weekend break with friends.

Tickets are on sale at Glór Box Office 00353 65 6843103 Further details on the festival at
email or contact 00353879723647 / 00353857758523. Click here for programme of events.

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