In BristolNews

One of Europe’s biggest crime fiction conventions will take place in Bristol (12-15 May) featuring the genres most wanted authors.

Featured guests include Ann Cleeves - the author behind the hit TV series Vera, which stars Brenda Blethyn, and Shetland, with Douglas Henshall.

Andrew Child will also make his first UK appearance since taking over the helm of the Jack Reacher series. An author in his own right as Andrew Grant, the younger brother of Lee Child has been hugely successful as the continuation author, dominating the bestseller lists. The books have also been dramatised for Amazon Prime.

CrimeFest, sponsored by Specsavers, is hosted at the Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel. It returns after a two-year hiatus from Covid.

Up to 150 authors will descend on Bristol appearing in over 50 panels.

The convention, which began in 2008, is based on the American convention model and is considered the most democratic and accessible crime fiction event in the UK.

As well as drawing readers and fans, it attracts editors, publishers and reviewers, thanks to its reputation as a hotbed for crime writing talent.

The convention also features the past two winners of the Crime Writers’ Association’s highest accolade - the CWA Diamond Dagger. Robert Goddard received the Dagger, awarded for a lifetime contribution to the genre in 2019, and Martin Edwards in 2020.

Goddard's books captivate readers worldwide - translated into over thirty languages - with their edge-of-the-seat pace and their labyrinthine plotting. As well as a prolific award-winning novelist, Martin Edwards is a renowned editor, reviewer, columnist and versatile writer of non-fiction, and a leading authority on crime fiction.

Director and co-founder of CrimeFest, Adrian Muller, said: “We pride ourselves on being open to all authors, which makes it a diverse and democratic celebration of the genre. Behind the scenes there is a team of passionate readers and volunteers, so there’s a friendly and inclusive energy at CrimeFest. Bristol is known for its vibrant, creative and independent spirit, and CrimeFest offers an exciting opportunity for writers and readers alike to meet and mingle.”

Panels delve into diverse topics from division in society today to historical crime, and locked room mysteries to police procedurals.

A ‘from page to screen’ panel includes the number one bestselling Icelandic writer, Yrsa Sigurðardóttir and the ‘queen of twists’, Sarah Pinborough - author behind the Netflix hit, Behind Her Eyes.

A wealth of crime authors in attendance have had books recently snapped up for TV or film, including Cathy Ace, whose Cait Morgan Mysteries have been optioned by Free@Last TV, behind the hit Agatha Raisin series.

Other acclaimed authors attending include Holly Watt, Matt Wesolowski, C.L. Taylor, Lynne Truss, Barry Forshaw, Simon Brett, Vaseem Khan, Helen FitzGerald, Ruth Dudley Edwards and Michael Ridpath.

Saima Mir will also appear as the first recipient of the CRIMEFEST bursary for a crime fiction author of colour. Saima Mir’s debut novel The Khan was a Times and Sunday Times Crime Novel of the Year in 2021, and has been longlisted for The Portico Prize.

This year’s Ghost of Honour, commemorates Dick Francis, and highlights include the Gala Dinner with Toastrix Zoë Sharp, creator of the Charlie Fox series of crime thrillers, and the annual CrimeFest Awards, featuring the Specsavers Debut Crime Novel Award. This year it will also host the inaugural Best TV Crime Drama award, voted by the public.

Real life contends with fiction too, with authors such as Vicki Bradley - a detective constable in the Met police, former lawyer Steve Cavanagh and thriller writer, Simon Conway - a former British Army officer and international aid worker, who has cleared landmines in wars across the world.

CrimeFest is at the Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel from 12-15 May, 2022. For the full list of authors and to book, go to:




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