4-14 October 2018
Tickets on sale to friends 5 July and general public 19 July

Wimbledon BookFest returns 4-14 October with a diverse programme of talks, debates and workshops showcasing literary names, politics, current affairs, sport, film, music, children’s events and much more in the Big Tent on Wimbledon Common. The Festival opens with broadcaster and bestselling author Graham Norton discussing his new novel A Keeper with Andrew O’Hagan.

The Festival is delighted to welcome novelists Pat Barker, Sebastian Faulks, Patrick Gale, Lionel Shriver, Imogen Hermes Gower and Hanan Al-Shaykh, a major novelist of the Arab World, and in partnership with the University of Roehampton Fiona Sampson and Writer in Residence, Tim Atkins. Lionel Shriver’s short story collection ‘Property’ is the ‘Festival Reads’ title for 2018 with copies available in Merton Libraries throughout the summer.

An expanded comedy programmes is headlined by Alan Davies, Ed Byrne and Mark Watson, whilst comedian and author Adam Kay discusses This is going to Hurt, his hilarious and heart-breaking account of being a junior doctor.

Chef and cookery writer Yotam Ottolenghi celebrates the publication of his new book Simple, whilst legendary musician Billy Bragg is in conversation with Radio X DJ John Kennedy. Sports fans won’t want to miss Rugby legends Brian Moore and Rob Andrew.

A packed Children’s programme features Radio 1 presenters Greg James and Chris Smith talking about their book Kid Normal, Francesca Simon, bestselling author of the Horrid Henry books with a new picture book. Two bestselling adult authors Sophie Kinsella and Jessie Burton introduce us to their new children’s books. 

As ever, the programme features a lively politics and current affairs strand. Alan Rusbridger and Samira Ahmed will be discussing the importance of journalism in a Fake News world whilst Stig Abell, Ayesha Hazarika and Jason Cowley discuss contemporary British politics. Guardian foreign correspondent Luke Harding and Sir David Omand (Former Director, GCHQ) share their insights on Russia. 

History lovers will welcome Simon Scarrow and Robin Waterfield exploring the Ancient World, Max Hastings examining Vietnam, Neil MacGregor discusses his latest book ‘Living With The Gods’ and Andrew Roberts talking about Churchill. Former Cabinet minister and anti-apartheid campaigner Peter Hain will celebrate the life of Nelson Mandela on the 100th anniversary of his birth.

Channel 4 news presenter Cathy Newman commemorates the unsung heroines who made twentieth century Britain, the subject of her book, Bloody Brilliant Women, whilst Zing Tsjeng shares the lives of some talented, inspiring – but largely forgotten – female artists. 

BookFest’s Science strand includes Radio 4 broadcaster and author Adam Rutherford and Nigel Shadbolt, one of Britain’s pre-eminent authorities on AI who will examine how smart machines are transforming us and what we should do about it.

The Festival welcomes Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson who shares her manifesto on climate change and Bryony Gordon, author of ‘Mad Girl’ who explores positive mental health. Fashion fans won’t want to miss writers Hilary Alexander and Chloe Fox on leopard print vs the Little Black Dress.

A new ‘My Wimbledon’ strand starts this year with Afua Hirsch author of Brit(ish): On Race, Identity and Belonging, who grew up locally, in conversation with Samira Ahmed.   

Set on Wimbledon Common, close to Wimbledon Village, a specially commissioned Big Tent seating up to 500, and an intimate William Morris themed marquee, provide the focal point for the Festival.

Tickets on sale to friends 5 July and general public 19 July
See www.wimbledonbookfest.org for more information