Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Knives on tour: Stoke Newington LitFest 2017

There are a lot of literary festivals in the firmament these days, and London has a big share in them, but there seems to be a good consensus that Stoke Newington offers one of the liveliest and most enthusiastically attended. I made my second visit there the other week - the first was in 2011 for The Possessions of Doctor Forrest - and this time I was debating the dangerously hot topic of whether our political life is stranger than fiction, the recent material for such a debate amounting to as much as any of us could reasonably process.

I was talking Knives, of course, and in very good company being on the Stokey platform with Jonathan Freedland, the accomplished Guardian journalist who writes thrillers under the nom de plume of Sam Bourne; and Terri Stiatsny, an ex-BBC reporter who now specialises in prize-winning fiction derived from real-world political events, and who graciously did the chairing of the event though, obviously, we all three of us had things to say about what we do and why. Jonathan's new book isn't actually out yet but imagines a conspiracy against a Trump-like US president. Terri's latest, Conflicts of Interest, is in paperback now.

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