Return to the Granite City

Aberdeen Booked! Festival is back!

Following a stellar success last summer, we’re thrilled to be heading north once again this August for the second Aberdeen Booked! Festival – a two-day literary feast for all ages, hosted once again by ACT in the heart of the city.

Presented in partnership with Aberdeen City Council, Aberdeen City Library Services and Creative Learning, ACT Aberdeen and Waterstones, this mini-Festival offers strong voices and stories of Aberdeen city and shire in a range of events. Audiences can enjoy free readings over lunch with the local writers behind the National Theatre of Scotland’s 2016 production Granite, and with the emerging talents of Aberdeen Writers’ Studio too. We’re also thrilled to have an event focusing on the life and work of artist Joan Eardley, renowned for her depictions of rural Catterline in Aberdeenshire, with Anne Galastro, who co-authored of Joan Eardley: A Sense of Place to coincide with a major new exhibition.

Aberdeen Unbound, our free evening of words, performance and revelry, returns after a jam-packed session last summer. Local writer Shane Strachan hosts some of the north east’s finest wordsmiths including Leila Aboulela, John Aberdein and Esther Wolfson, plus 2017 Gavin Wallace Fellowship appointee and playwright Morna Young, who folks up some favourite songs with her band Folkify.

Bringing the global together with the local, we welcome internationally renowned crime writer Arne Dahl from Sweden and one of France’s best-selling authors Michel Bussi, who come together to talk about their chilling new novels. Jake Arnott – who also takes to the stage for Unbound –  presents The Fatal Tree, a blend of fact and fiction telling a riveting tale of crime and rough justice in 1720s London. Edinburgh-based children’s author Mike Nicholson reads and sings songs drawn from his fantastic rhyming tale The Giant Who Snored in a free event for young children too.

ACT will be open to the public throughout the Festival too – visit a pop-up Waterstones bookshop, speak with local library staff and get yourself signed up, have fun with the Council’s Creative Learning team, and take part in other fun free activities in the midst of a Festival atmosphere.

In 2016 we were overwhelmed by interest in our free events for schools, and reluctantly had to turn down 2000 requests for places. This year we’ve been determined to include as many local students as possible, and we’re delighted that 1450 pupils from 15 primary and secondary schools across the region will attend; a 28% increase on last year’s event. A generous donation to the Book Festival has allowed us to offer a free book to every attending pupil too, helping kids of all backgrounds engage deeply with reading, writing, words and creativity.

Check out the video above to get a flavour of last year’s phenomenal Festival and book your tickets now for Aberdeen Booked! Festival 2017!

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