Byres Road Book Festival… 29 authors, at 28 events… on four days… at four venues

By Ian Marland at

Crime, comedy and children are just some of the themes at this year’s Byres Road Book Festival.

Malachy Tallack, Chris Brookmyre, Douglas Skelton, and Gail Honeyman will be among those bringing fiction, fantasy, history and superheroes to Glasgow’s Byres Road over the September weekend September 22 to September 25.

Byres Road Book Festival

Poster: Tickets are free but availability is limited

Returning for its second outing, the festival will once again be hosted at Hillhead Library, Waterstones, and the Oxfam Book and Music shops.

The book festival will see 29 top authors taking part in talks, drop in sessions and fun activities.

Celebrated author Chris Brookmyre will kickstart proceedings at Hillhead Library (Friday, Sept 22, 6pm) with an open floor on his latest Jack Parlabane novel ‘Want You Gone’ which delves into cyber crime.

Also for crime fans, a Bloody Scotland panel session will be led by Sara Sheridan and Louise Welsh (Sunday, Sept 24, Hillhead Library, 5.30pm) on incorporating the sinister side of Scotland’s buildings into storytelling.

Adding a comic strand, new to the festival are the poet, broadcaster and comedian Ian McMillan alongside leading cartoonist Tony Husband.

Byres Road Book Festival

Sinister: writer Louise Welsh will talk about storytelling

They will bring their unique improvised fun to Hillhead Library, performing a live cartoon history, reflecting on local life, poems and stories. Not to be missed, this one-off event is for audiences of all ages and is sure to make you laugh(Friday, Sept 22, Hillhead Library, 7:30 – 9pm)

Meanwhile, Witty Women will see BBC Broadcaster and newly-appointed chair of the Gaelic Books Council, Catriona Murray, host a loquacious panel session with authors Mairi E. MacLeod, Maureen Macleod and Seonag Monk.

They will each give their perspectives on Gaelic culture and broadcasting. Expect this to be fast-paced, humorous and a refreshing insight on Saturday September 23 (Hillhead Library, 3 – 4pm)

Martin St. John recounts his life in Glasgow punk rock band Primal Scream, with musical performances and readings from his autobiography ‘Psychedelic Confessions of a Primal Screamer’ (Sunday, Sept 24, Oxfam Music Shop, 7pm)

Paul Bristow will share ‘The Superpower Project’ – a session dedicated to crafting wondrous caped crusaders and mysterious magical heroines from the depths of your imagination – for children aged eight to 12 (Monday, Sept 25, Hillhead Library, 1.30pm)

Byres Road Book Festival

Novel: Author Chris Brookmyre kicks off proceedings on Friday evening

Deborah Murray is Byres Road & Lanes business improvement district project manager.

She said: “The 2017 Byres Road Book Festival programme has something for everyone.

“With 28 events, we are really excited to celebrate the vibrant literary landscape with the city.

“From superheroes to live cartoons and the ever-popular crime genre, we aimed to craft a programme that inspires and delights audiences of all ages and encourages you to leaf through our festival.”

Tickets are now available for all events – but be quick as limited tickets are available.

Tickets are free, but some events for adults in Hillhead library will have a booking fee.

For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit www.byresroadbookfestival.com