Six authors at Summer Reads books festival

Keiron PimFancy getting involved in a Norfolk-wide book club featuring books and personal appearances by six great authors? Then the new Summer Reads programme could be for you.Keiron Pim

Readers across Norfolk are invited to take part in a county-wide book group this summer that will feature appearances from six great authors, and offer a host of complementary activities.

Running from June through to August, Summer Reads is a collaboration between literature development agency Writers' Centre Norwich and the Norfolk Library Service, which will be stocking extra copies of the books in question at its branches.

The six books are: The Lessons by Naomi Alderman; Summertime by JM Coetzee; The Tall Man by Chloe Hooper; Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell; The Widow's Tale by Mick Jackson; Tail of the Blue Bird by Nii Parkes.

Chris Gribble, Writers' Centre Norwich's chief executive, said: 'Traditionally, summer reading is seen as light, but these books are both accessible and stimulating, and will transport the reader all around the world.

'There's also loads of ways to join in, whether through looking at extra info online, joining in discussions or coming to meet one of the authors at our events in June.'

The idea is that readers across Norfolk read as many of the books as they wish and can then download extra information, attend the Summer Reads Book Club events at venues in Norwich, take part in competitions and join in online discussion, as well as seeing the authors in person.

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The programme gets off to a flying start this coming week with a trio of events sure to excite book-lovers.

This Monday, June 21, sees the Summer Reads official launch take place at the Millennium Library, Norwich, as Naomi Alderman, Nii Parkes and Mick Jackson give readings between 6.30pm and 7.30pm. Tickets cost �2 and the event is part of Writers' Centre Norwich's Worlds Literature Festival, which runs from June 20-27 - telephone 01603 877177 to reserve a place.

On Tuesday evening, June 22, the great South African writer JM Coetzee is at Norwich Playhouse with three of his compatriots, Gabeba Baderoon, CJ Driver and Zo� Wicomb. This event is also part of the Worlds Literature Festival, and will see Coetzee, a Nobel laureate and two-time Booker Prize winner, return to Norwich for a rare reading of his own work. Tickets may be booked via Norwich Playhouse's box office, on 01603 598598.

On Thursday, June 24, Chloe Hooper will star at the Australian Voices Event at the UEA Drama Studio. The author of The Tall Man, which the New York Times called a careful and ingenious story that 'will pull you in atom by atom and haunt you', will be joined by fellow Australian writers Michelle de Kretser and Steven Amsterdam. The event runs from 7pm to 8.30pm and tickets are �5 - call the UEA box office on 01603 508050.

See www.writerscentrenorwich.org.uk or telephone Sam Ruddock on 01603 877177 for more information about Summer Reads, or email readers@writerscentrenorwich.org.uk

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