Line-up announced for UEA literary festival in Norwich

A prestigious literary festival will come of age next month when it celebrates its 21st birthday with a host of best-selling and award-winning guests.

Next month's International Literary Festival at the University of East Anglia in Norwich was announced today with a diverse line-up featuring prize-winning novelists, a leading scientist and one of the voices of the BBC's Today programme.

The 21st birthday party will open on September 28 with Wilbur Smith, one of the world's best-selling authors with more than 30 novels to his name, followed by award-winning Australian writer Gail Jones and twice Booker Prize short-listed David Lodge.

The festival, hosted by the Arthur Miller Centre, will also feature Evan Davis on October 19, presenter of BBC Radio 4's Today programme and BBC2's Dragon's Den, who wrote Made in Britain for the recent television series.

Ethologist and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, whose book The God Delusion has sold more than 1.5m copies, will visit on October 26.

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November features appearances by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Jeffrey Eugenides, former army officer and historian Antony Beevor, winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize for his book on Stalingrad, and Antonia Fraser, leading biographer and long-term partner of playwright and director Harold Pinter.

Booker Prize-winning novelist Alan Hollinghurst, also long-listed for this year's prize, will close the festival on November 30.

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Prof Chris Bigsby, festival organiser and Arthur Miller Centre director, said: 'It seems amazing that the festival has been going for 21 years. Each year I hope that we will be able to come up to the level of previous years and each year I am surprised and delighted to find that major figures from this country and around the world continue to make their way to Norwich and UEA.'

'This year we have writers from four continents including a leading scientist, historian, biographer and radio and television journalist, along with award-winning novelists. Whatever your taste or interest, there is something here for everybody.'

The autumn festival was launched in 1991 and featured American playwright Arthur Miller, renowned authors Doris Lessing and Salman Rushdie, writer and politician Gore Vidal and best-selling crime writers PD James and Ruth Rendell.

All events begin at 7pm in Lecture Theatre 1 at the UEA. Season tickets are priced �42 and �36 for concessions �36. Individual tickets are priced �6 and are available from the UEA Box Office on 01603 508050 or

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