Welcome to the Crime Fiction Lover events diary. Below you’ll find a listing of the key festivals coming up from all round the world. Maybe we’ll see you at one of them! If you’re an event organiser and would like us to list it, send us an email via our Contact page
Aberdeen, Scotland, various venues
Tickets: Weekend pass £90
Scottish authors already crowd the crime fiction shelves and now it looks as if Scottish crime festivals will follow suit. The Granite City – aka Aberdeen – is about to welcome a new, three-day event and it is jam-packed full of tasty goings on. Panellists include Denise Mina, Christopher Brookmyre, Stuart MacBride, Kristina Ohlsson and Russel D McLean, and there are some great family events too. How about Drawing Baddies with Shoo Rayner! Workshops, a self-guided audio walking tour, and even a dramatic performance (called, appropriately enough, A Play, A Pie and a Pint: Dirt Under the Carpet)?
Portsmouth BookFest: Portsmouth Coppers
Portsmouth Central Library, Guildhall Walk, Portsmouth PO1 2DX
Two of the south’s top crime writers, Graham Hurley and Pauline Rowson, whose novels are set in Portsmouth, come under interrogation in a Portsmouth Coppers – a new event for Portsmouth BookFest. Graham and Pauline will chat about how they research and write their crime novels, quizzed by fellow author Diana Bretherick, who worked as a criminal barrister for 10 years and with offenders at Brixton prison before becoming a crime writer. The panel debate will be followed by a book signing.
Mitchell Library, North Street, Glasgow, G3 7DN
Tickets: From £6
Where to begin with this 10-day celebration of all things written? How about Ian Rankin, Jo Nesbo and Val McDermid? Not whetted the appetite enough? OK, then let’s add to the mix Chris Brookmyre chatting to Daniel Cole and Helen Fields; Craig Russell, Rod Reynolds and Dreda Say Mitchell debating Decades of Crime; and Ann Cleeves and Lin Anderson ruminating upon The Darkness of Orkney and Shetland. Really, we’re just scratching the surface of a festival that also includes a Wee Write strand for young readers and the brilliantly named Aye Tunes, featuring the likes of Scottish musical icon Roddy Woomble as well as Spiders from Mars member Woody Woodmansey.
Left Coast Crime
Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, Honolulu, Hawaii
Tickets: Packages $265
To that winning combination of sun, sea and sand you can add… CRIME as Left Coast Crime moves to Hawaii for its 2017 incarnation. This annual mystery convention sponsored by mystery fans – whether they’re readers or writers – is held during the first quarter of the year at a wide range of destinations in Western North America. Final programme details are still to be finalised, but highlights so far include the presentation of a Lifetime Achievement award to Faye and Jonathan Kellerman and appearances by Colin Cotterill and Dana Stabenow. We also love the inclusion of a Ghost of Honor – this year, it’s Earl Derr Biggers, creator of Charlie Chan!
Landmark Centre, Deal, Kent, CT14 6BB
The third annual Deal Noir crime fiction convention is a one-day event, but that doesn’t stop it being packed full of interest for crime fiction lovers. Speakers unveiled so far include Sarah Ward, Barbara Nadel and Nicola Upson, plus a trio with a distinctly telly feel about them – David Hewson, responsible for three adaptations of The Killing as well as his own Pieter Vos and Nic Costa series; Guy Fraser-Sampson, whose three Mapp and Lucia continuation novels were snapped up for television; and actor-turned-author Hugh Fraser, best known as Hastings in Poirot.
Wordpool’s Festival of Written Word
Various venues, Blackpool
Tickets: From £6
Crime and cocktails sounds like a perfect combination… throw in Elly Griffiths, Denise Mina, Sharon Bolton and Alex Marwood and it is a crime fiction lover’s dream! The fab four comprise the panel for the seaside festival’s launch event – Mystery and Illusion: The Art of the Crime Writer – in the art deco surroundings of Stanley Park. Thursday sees Julia Crouch with Sarah Ward and Mandasue Heller, plus MJ Arlidge chatting to Ben Aaronovitch. Oh, and they’ve got a vintage double-decker bus to take you from venue to venue!
28-30 April 2017
The Lit & Phil, 23 Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1SE
Tickets: From £5 – on sale in February
Any festival that opens with a free event featuring Denise Mina certainly deserves some publicity – and that’s just how this year’s Newcastle Noir kicks off. Other highlights include a crime writing workshop with William Ryan and some tasty panel discussions – Geordie Noir, featuring Howard Linskey, LJ Ross and Matt Wesolowski; and Domestic Noir with CL Taylor, Michael J Malone and Louise Beech caught our attention, but there are a total of 13 panels involving 40-plus authors in this busy weekend programme. Details are still being finalised, so keep an eye on the website.
18-21 May 2017
Bristol Marriott Royal Hotel
Tickets: Currently £175 but will rise to £195 as the event approaches
Named one of ‘the best crime writing festivals around the world’ in the Guardian and one of ‘the 50 Best Festivals’ in The Independent, CrimeFest draws top crime novelists, readers, editors, publishers and reviewers from around the globe, so Iceland’s Queens of Crime are sure to get a warm welcome when Jónína Leósdóttir, Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, Sólveig Pálsdóttir and Lilja Sigurðardóttir gather together for a panel moderated by Barry Forshaw. It’s just one of the high points in a packed programme which boasts Anthony Horowitz (pictured) and Peter Lovesey as featured guest authors.
30 June-2 July
Curated by Ian Rankin, this festival will celebrate 30 years of his irascible Edinburgh police detective, Rebus. Plans include interactive events, live music, walking tours, screenings, and food and drink, as well as talks on Ian Rankin’s historic and contemporary influences. Experts, artists and performers will join him across the weekend to provide a unique insight into one of the most significant and best-loved characters in crime fiction. The full festival line-up will be announced on 17 March, when tickets will go on sale. For further updates and exclusive announcements, be sure to bookmark the site.
Grand Hyatt New York
Tickets: Early bird packages from $463
It’s the 12th year of this shindig, billed as ‘the annual conference of the International Thriller Writers’ and attracting some of the biggest names in the genre. Think Lee Child, Lisa Gardner, John Lescroart and Heather Graham for starters and then take your pick of best-selling names from Val McDermid to Karin Slaughter. In addition to a full array of panels, there’s a pre-event FBI workshop to be held at FBI headquarters in NYC on 10 July, Master CraftFest, CraftFest, ThrillerFest, PitchFest and much more.
Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival
The Old Swan Hotel, Harrogate, Yorkshire
It’s the 15th year of this fun-packed event held at Agatha Christie’s old stomping ground, the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate, and Elly Griffiths has been announced as programming chair. The Ruth Galloway creator said: “It is an absolute honour. I’ve been lucky enough to be involved with the Festival really from the beginning of my time as a crime writer. I’ve been encouraged so much by a lot of established authors there like Ann Cleeves and Val McDermid, so it feels almost surreal for me to be Programming Chair a year after Peter James.” Special guests confirmed so far include Ian Rankin, Lee Child, Peter May, Stuart MacBride and Kathy Reichs – with more to be announced in the coming months.
Tickets: Approx £60 for a three-day pass
This three-day festival on the beautiful island of Gotland could be the ideal summer escape for lovers of Scandinavian crime fiction. From the UK, Elly Griffiths will be participating, and from Australia debut author Jane Harper. Norwegians Unni Lindell and Torkil Damhaug will join the powerful Swedish contingent that includes Camilla Läckberg, Jens Lapidus, Katarina Wennstam, Mari Jungstedt, Denise Rudberg and Anna Jansson. Expect panels, talks, screenings and even guided walks at this family-friendly event held in Visby, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Bouchercon 2017: Passport to Murder
Tickets: CDN $195
Ghost walks and a visit to the Toronto Public Library Conan Doyle collection are two added attractions of this festival – and with guests of honour including Megan Abbott, Louise Penny and Christopher Brookmyre it’s no mystery as to why it is such a popular event. Organised by the World Mystery Convention, and named in honour of distinguished mystery fiction critic, editor and author Anthony Boucher, Bouchercon began life in 1970 and is returning to Canada for the first time since 2004. Mingle with authors, publishers, editors, aspiring writers and agents at a whole array of events – and attendees get to vote on the Anthony Awards too.