MK Lit Fest to launch ‘The Bookshop Series’ hosting four events featuring celebrated authors

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The events, in collaboration with Watertones, Milton Keynes, kick off on June 10 with bestselling authors Giles Kristian and Conn Iggulden.

The duo will be in conversation with award-winning writer Philip Stevens about their latest, keenly awaited historical fiction novels, Arthur and Nero.

Then on June 18, Heather Richardson will be at The Box Arts Club, Arts Central, talking through ‘A Dress for Kathleen’, a story around the creation of a hand-embroidered linen dress that also explores family, and the threads that connect past and present. Finally, on June 25, the festival welcomes the inspiring Anna Shevchenko for an online interview on her collection of stories from Ukraine, Around the War in 20 Stories: Ukrainian Tales of Hope, Humanity and Humour. This touching and captivating book provides a revealing glimpse into the everyday lives of ordinary Ukrainians as they navigate the chaos of war.

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Arthur by Giles Kristian is an evocative tale of King Arthur’s legend, bringing the war leader and warrior to life for a new generation. Conn Iggulden’s Nero brims with intrigue and ruthless power games, marking the first instalment in a masterful trilogy about Empress Agrippina’s ambition to make her son Nero the ruler of all Rome. The event starts at 7pm, and ticket holders will receive a complimentary drink and a £2 discount on copies of the novels purchased on the evening. Giles and Conn will be staying after the talk to meet attendees, and sign their books.

British-Ukrainian journalist and writer Anna Shevchenko discusses her latest work, Around the War in 20 Stories, as part of MK LitFest's June eventsBritish-Ukrainian journalist and writer Anna Shevchenko discusses her latest work, Around the War in 20 Stories, as part of MK LitFest's June events
British-Ukrainian journalist and writer Anna Shevchenko discusses her latest work, Around the War in 20 Stories, as part of MK LitFest's June events

A spokesperson added: “Join us at The Box Arts Club on 18 June 2024 at 6.30 - 8.30pm for a heartfelt evening with author and textile artist Heather Richardson, as she shares the touching story behind her book A Dress for Kathleen. This narrative began as a piece of textile art – a hand-embroidered Irish linen dress – commemorating her teenaged aunt Kathleen Hutchinson, who tragically died while cycling home from her first job in a linen mill during World War II. The story weaves together the lives of Kathleen’s parents and their rural existence in Northern Ireland during the early 20th century. With the dress on display at The Box, this event will provide an intimate glimpse into the personal history and artistic journey that inspired the book.

“To conclude our June events, at 7pm online on 25 June, British-Ukrainian journalist and writer Anna Shevchenko discusses her latest work, Around the War in 20 Stories: Ukrainian Tales of Hope, Humanity and Humour, which demonstrates profound insight and solidarity with the people of Ukraine as she captures the essence of resilience and spirit through true tales that range from profoundly moving, to darkly humorous and downright surreal.”

Profits from the event and all proceeds from book sales are donated to Ukrainian charitable projects.

Click here for tickets and full programme details.

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