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Readers’ Day
Readers’ Day


Venue: Guildford Harbour Hotel, Alexandra Terrace,  Guildford GU1 3DA
Date:  Saturday 9th October 2021 
Time: 10.00 - 16.00
Price: £48.00 (includes a light lunch and refreshments)
Online booking subject to a 5% booking fee per ticket (capped at £5 per transaction)

Six fiction speakers in one day, hosted by Fanny Blake at the Harbour Hotel.

Peace Adzo Medie – His Only Wife
When Afi Tekple is persuaded to marry a wealthy man she barely knows she accepts, seeing him as a way into an exciting new life in Ghana’s capital. But it’s not quite the life-changing opportunity she imagined.  For a start he sends a stand-in to his own wedding. And he loves another.  Afi must use all of her courage to confront her situation and create an independent life for herself. Bursting with warmth and humour, this contemporary tale of a young woman making her way in a modern world is a stunning debut novel.

Hafsa Zayyan – We Are All Birds of Uganda
Sameer is a high-flying lawyer in London but senses an emptiness in his life. When he returns to his family home after a tragedy he is put under pressure to stay.  But Sameer sees a different future for himself. On a last-minute trip to Uganda, the land of his grandfather, he uncovers a past he knew nothing about, and finds a life for himself he could never have imagined. Moving between two continents over a troubled century, this is a moving and poignant novel of generational love, loss, and what it means to find home. The book won the first #Merky Books New Writer’s Prize supported by Stormzy.

Deborah Moggach O.B.E – The Black Dress
From the bestselling author of 20 novels including Tulip Fever, The Carer and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, comes this delightful, funny and tender story about the unexpected twists and pleasures of life. When Pru‘s husband walks out on her she’s left to contemplate her future. She’s missing not so much him but the life they had together. In a daze she goes off to a friend’s funeral and finds herself at the wrong funeral. But, everyone has been so welcoming, and she thinks, why not go to another? So, she does. After all what harm can it do?

Stacey Halls – Mrs England
Ruby May is a newly graduated nurse when she arrives at the remote Yorkshire home of a wealthy couple, Charles and Lilian England, to look after their children. She hopes it will be the fresh start she needs but it soon becomes clear that something is not right about the beautiful, mysterious, Mrs England. Set in the Edwardian era, and simmering with slow-burning menace, Stacey’s third novel is a compelling read, and follows on from the success of The Familiars and The Foundling, both Sunday Times bestsellers

Elizabeth Macneal – Circus of Wonders
1866.  Sold by her father to a circus as the ‘leopard girl’ due to the birthmarks on her skin Nell is torn from all that she knows. But as her fame grows, and she finds friendships among the other performers, she begins to think that maybe it was the best thing that could have happened to her.

Moving from the pleasure gardens of Vauxhall to the battle-scarred plains of the Crimea it’s an astonishing story of power and ownership, fame, and one woman’s determination to tell her own story.  Another captivating story from the bestselling author of The Doll Factory.

Tony Parsons – Your Neighbour’s Wife

‘Parsons at his very best.'  Daily Mail

What do you do when your perfect life spins out of control? Tana Carver seems to have it all. A loving mother and wife, a successful business woman, she’s the sort of person you’d want to live next door to, who might even be your best friend. But, on one night of madness, on a work trip from home, she puts all this at risk, and her life becomes a nightmare. There’s only one way out. And it involves murder. A gripping psychological thriller from the award-winning journalist and bestselling author whose books have been translated into more than 40 languages. His most-loved novel, Man and Boy, won the Book of the Year in 2000.

Fanny Blake
Fanny was a publisher for many years before becoming a freelance journalist and writer. She has written various non-fiction titles, acted as ghost writer for a number of celebrities, and is a former books editor of Woman & Home magazine. She has been a judge of a number of literary prizes, including the Costa First Novel award and the British Book Awards. She is also the commissioning editor for Quick Reads and a book reviewer. She has written seven novels, including Our Summer Together, An Italian Summer and her latest book, The Long Way Home.

Sandwich choices:
Tuna and cucumber
Chicken mayo with gem lettuce
Egg and Chive
Ham and tomato
Vegan Alternative
They will be served with crisps, fruit and a brownie.

  • Guildford Book Festival
  • Authors: Tony Parsons, Stacey Halls, Peace Adzo Medie, Hafsa Zayyan, Deborah Moggach and Elizabeth Macneal. Hosted by Fanny Blake. Ticket price includes lunch and light refreshments.
  • Personal Basket