Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Gibraltar Festival Attracts Moroccan Book Lovers

From Friday October 25 to Sunday October 27, the streets of Gibraltar will throng with book lovers and internationally known authors. The first Gibunco Gibraltar International Literary Festival offers a stellar line-up of authors includes prize-winning author Joanne Harris and Man Booker Prize winner Ben Okri, as well as celebrated cookery writers Claudia Roden, Ken Hom and Madhur Jaffrey

The first of its kind on the Rock, the Gibunco Gibraltar International Literary Festival is initiated by Her Majesty's Government of Gibraltar and directed by the organisers of the Oxford Literary Festival. The programme reflects the rich cultural heritage that comes from Gibraltar’s location between Europe and Africa and from the influence of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.

Other authors to appear will include Richard Hamilton, who will recount how he tracked down the last few remaining storytellers of the Marrakech Medina to record their tales for his book, The Last Storytellers: Tales from the Heart of Morocco. Thriller writers Tom Mogford and Jason Webster, whose books are set in the Mediterranean, will add a hint of danger to the Festival as they discuss crime in the sun, as will Gibraltar mystery writing duo Sam Benady and Mary Chiappe. Novelist and former Moroccan culture minister, Mohammed Achaari will take part in an event, Voices From Morocco event, as will Moroccan author Abdelkarim Jouaiti.

Author Joanne Harris will speak about her new book Peaches for Monsieur Le Curé

Festival director Sally Dunsmore points out that Gibraltar has had an extraordinary history, which is reflected in the the city state’s diverse cultural, ethnic and religious traditions. "I have sought to reflect these rich influences in the festival programme," she says. "I am delighted that so many speakers are coming from Morocco and Spain to join the many distinguished novelists, poets, historians, biographers, journalists, cookery writers and public figures from all over the world." She says she is especially pleased that three new books will be launched at the festival by Gibraltar writers. "We have a strong contingent of speakers from the Rock, together with three British novelists who have used Gibraltar as the backdrop for their latest works."

The festival will be held in beautiful historic venues, such as the Garrison Library, the King's Chapel and The Convent.

Prize winning author Ben Okri
Some of the featured events will be Ben Okri's session on The Conjunction of Africa and Europe; Madhur Jaffrey talking about My Life on Stage and Screen, followed by a screening of the romantic movie set in India, Heat and Dust; lunch with celebrity cookery author Ken Hom and Tahir Shah on his new book Casablanca Blues.

There are so many events running simultaneously in the richly packed program, some tough choices will need to be made about which to attend. On Friday morning at 10 am, for example, should you go to Peter Snow talking about When Britain Burned the White House (in 1814); John Sutherland and John Crace on Sex and Marriage; Leanda de Lisle on Women in Power and History or Joanne Harris's Peaches for Monsieur Le Curé? And this is just a taste of what is on offer.

If you love language, literature, books, ideas, good food and stimulating conversation, do yourself a favour and head for the Rock for the inaugural Gibunco Gibraltar International Literary Festival on October 25 - 27.

To see the program in detail and purchase tickets, please CLICK HERE. 

Madhur Jaffrey will speak on her life on stage and screen

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