Ennis Book Club Festival 2008 Gets Underway

From: Dunphy Public Relations
Published: Fri Feb 29 2008

Mr. Vincent Woods, playwright, poet and Presenter of RTE Radio 1’s The Arts Show, will this evening launch the three-day event, the largest of its kind anywhere in Ireland and the UK.

The Ennis Book Club Festival 2008, supported by Clare County Library, is expected to attract hundreds of book club members and book lovers from all over Europe and North America.

The programme of events will feature author visits, readings, lectures, workshops, exhibitions and cookery demonstrations, musical entertainment, chocolate tasting in various venues around Ennis, and a speed dating-style networking session for book club members to get to know one another and exchange views.

The festival line-up includes Roddy Doyle, a Dublin dramatist, screenwriter and Booker Prize winning author of ‘The Commitments’, ‘The Snapper’ and ‘The Van’; British author Joanne Harris, who wrote the best seller ‘Chocolat’; Hugo Hamilton, winner of the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature; Dermot Bolger, the author of eight novels and winner of the Samuel Beckett Award; and Nuala O Faolain, Irish Times columnist and author of ‘Are You Somebody?’; Neven Maguire, an award winning celebrity chef; Lorna Landvik, author of the best selling novels ‘Patty Jane's House of Curl’ and ‘The Tall Pine Polka’.

Event organisers have also secured the participation of Brian Keenan, former hostage and author of ‘An Evil Cradling’, the 1991 winner of the Irish Times Literature Prize for Non-fiction; Diarmuid Gavin, writer, garden designer and TV personality; Richard Tillinghast, critically acclaimed US poet; Fintan O’Toole, drama critic, journalist and broadcaster; Morgan Llywelyn, an esteemed author of historical fantasy, fiction and non-fiction books; Ré Ó Laighléis, the biggest selling contemporary writer in the Irish language; and Theo Dorgan, award winning Cork-born poet and broadcaster.

Ciana Campbell of the Ennis Book Club Festival Organising Committee described the festival as 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.

Commenting on the festival line-up, Ms. Campbell said, "The involvement of so many high profile authors, academics and literary figures will no doubt contribute greatly to what will be a diverse programme of events."

Besides various readings and workshops by the principal participants, the Festival’s programme of events will comprise two presentations by Trinity College Dublin lecturer Dr. Darryl Jones on the work of Jane Austen; a presentation on the papers of Maurice Walsh (author of the Quiet Man) by archivist Martin Morris; a poetry session and CD launch by the Clare Three-Legged Stool Poets; and the story of the West Clare Railway by famed folklorist Eddie Lenihan.

Elsewhere, there will be a presentation entitled ‘10 Books You Must Read’ by Fintan O’Toole and Ms. Marion Coy, Director of the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology; a walking tour of the historic streets and buildings of Ennis; a talk by University of Limerick English lecturer Dr. Michael Griffin on the 18th century Ennis poet Thomas Dermody; a talk on the 19th century’s most famous folk healer, Feakle-native Biddy Early; and an ‘Author Identification Parade’ fun competition featuring author effigies designed and constructed by Maghera artist Jean Regan.

Kate Bateman of the School of English and Drama and the School of Education and Lifelong Learning in UCD will host a workshop entitled ‘How to Read a Novel’. ‘How to Read Poetry’, meanwhile, is the title of poet Mary O’Donnell’s workshop where she will share valuable insights into exploring poetry.

Noreen Meagher, who is blind, will host a talk on the value of Audio books for the visually impaired. Included in the session will be a presentation by Colleen Fitzgerald from the National Council for the Blind of Ireland. Irish language readings will be also held to mark Seachtain na Gaeilge 2008, while RTE’s Rachael English and broadcaster/journalist Caimin Jones will chair the Festival’s two main symposiums.

Tickets for all events are on sale at Glór Box Office (065-6843103/info@glor.ie). For further details on the Ennis Book Club Festival 2008 see www.ennisbookclubfestival.com. Alternatively email info@ennisbookclubfestival.com or contact 00353879723647 / 00353857758523.


Note to Editors:
- To arrange an interview please contact Mark Dunphy of Dunphy Public Relations on 0035386-8534900 or email media@dunphypr.com
- Contributor images and biographies are available on request

Mark Dunphy
Dunphy Public Relations
00353-868534900 (mobile)
00353-656839692 (fax)
Company: Dunphy Public Relations
Contact Name: Dunphy Public Relations
Contact Email: media@dunphypr.com
Contact Phone: 00353868534900

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