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Body in the library

A crime festival, running across various Surrey Libraries. The events range from coffee mornings with an author to a crime writing workshop, from a story time for adults to author talks and book signings:

Tickled to Death - an evening with crime novelist Simon Brett

Simon Brett is a crime fiction novelist best known for his series of novels featuring Charles Paris a middle aged actor down on his luck. He is also the creator of the well loved 'Fethering ' mysteries set on the Sussex coast featuring Carole Seddon and her mysterious sidekick, Jude.

Originally a writer and producer in radio comedy, Simon created the radio comedy 'After Henry' with Prunella Scales and Joan Sanderson for BBC Radio 4 which latterly became a very successful television situation comedy about three generations of women living in the same house. This was followed by the very successful BBC Radio 4 comedy 'No Commitments ' with Rosemary Leach, Celia Imrie and Nicola Paget.

Simon was awarded an OBE in the 2016 New Year's Honours 'for services to literature' and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. Simon was presented with The CWA Diamond Dagger, one of the highest accolades in the crime writing world in 2014.

Simon promises a delightful evening talking about his writing life in crime and comedy. There will be the opportunity to purchase copies of his books and Simon will sign them at the conclusion of the evening.

Book tickets for Simon Brett

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Coffee with crime author Monica Weller

Monica Weller's talk is about her latest book; Injured Parties, Solving the Murder of Dr Helen Davidson and how she came to investigate this unsolved murder and write her second true crime book published in 2016 by The History Press. She will describe her journey to find the killer of a much loved Buckinghamshire GP with no enemies, whose battered body was found in dense woodland in 1966. Armed only with a brief description of the murder and a few newspaper cuttings, Monica demonstrates her flair for the art of investigation. She is the ghost writer of Ruth Ellis My Sister's Secret Life, published in 2005, about the last woman to be hanged in the UK. Copies of the book will be available for purchase.

Book tickets for Monica Weller

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Tea with crime novelist Guy Fraser-Sampson

In addition to having penned The Hampstead Murders series, Guy Fraser-Sampson is a well known authority on the golden age of British detective writing and has been much in demand as a speaker on the likes of Ngaio Marsh, Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, Josephine Tey, and Margery Allingham at festivals around the country. He believes that crime fiction today has largely polarised into gritty 'noir' on the one hand and cloying 'cosy crime' on the other, leaving the middle ground thinly populated.

With The Hampstead Murders, the fifth of which is published this month by Urbane, he offers us a compelling mix of contemporary narrative and golden age style. We follow the personal and career ups and downs of a group of likeable police officers as they pursue murder inquiries in the atmospheric surroundings of London's most picturesque village. The most recent addition, The House On Downshire Hill, was inspired by a real life murder from a few years ago for which someone is currently serving a life sentence.

Guy is also well known for his Mapp and Lucia novels, all three of which were optioned by BBC television.

Book tickets for Guy Fraser-Sampson

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The Craft of Crime Writing: a writing workshop with Veronica Heley

Surrey Libraries are delighted to host a crime writing workshop with novelist, Veronica Heley. Veronica celebrated the publication of her 81st book in June 2018 and is perhaps best known for her Ellie Quicke and Bea Abbott detective novels, set against a suburban London background. In addition to writing detective fiction, Veronica also writes short stories, including a series for the Methodist Recorder, as well as historical novels and stories for children.

The workshop will cover all you need to know to start writing crime fiction and is aimed at new and continuing writers. It will include genre, readership and length, plot and theme and writing in the present and past tense. Other parts of the writing workshop will include, creating tension, integrating dialogue with action and the importance of that very first sentence!

Veronica will also cover practical aspects of getting published, how to submit to agents and publishers as well as registering for PLR and ALCS. The workshop is scheduled to run for around 3 hours and includes light refreshments.

Book tickets for Veronica Heley

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Storytime for Adults with actresses Rosalyn Landor & Geraldine Moffatt

Surrey Libraries are delighted to welcome celebrated actresses, Rosalyn Landor and Geraldine Moffatt for a very special crime themed Storytime for Adults. The event forms part of the first week of this inaugural Body in the Library: Crime Fiction Festival and both readers have chosen some delightful crime fiction short stories, to entertain, thrill and maybe even surprise you. Storytimes are not just for children!

Rosalyn Landor is an established, film, television and stage actress. Her film appearances include; The Amazing Mr Blunden, Arthur the King and The Devil Rides Out. Television includes; Hammer House of Horror, Sherlock Holmes, Cats Eyes, Rumpole of the Bailey, Star Trek and Love in a Cold Climate. Rosalyn's stage work has included appearances in Hay Fever by Noel Coward and Shaw's Arms and the Man. Latterly, Rosalyn has concentrated on providing the voices for a series of video games and short films as well as narrating audio books for a new audience of readers and recently won the Female Narrator of the Year award – the Audie.

Geraldine Moffatt is an established film, television and stage actress. Her film appearances include Get Carter and Quest for Love. Television includes Father Brown, The New Avengers, Crown Court and several Alun Owen Plays George's Room and Stella which have recently been reissued by the BFI. Geraldine's stage work has included appearances in Alfie by Bill Naughton and Close the Coalhouse Door by Sid Chaplin. Latterly, Geraldine has concentrated on occasional stage work but made a return to the screen in a cameo role for the video game Grand Theft Auto.

Book tickets for Storytime for Adults

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Agatha, Poirot and Me: an evening with crime writer Sophie Hannah

Bestselling author Sophie Hannah will talk about her lifelong love of Agatha Christie, and how, nearly 40 years after Christie's death, she became the first author to write about the great detective Hercule Poirot. Sophie will discuss her three Poirot novels, The Monogram Murders, Closed Casket, and the new The Mystery of Three Quarters.

Book for Sophie Hannah

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The making of a crime novel with Martin Edwards

Martin Edwards discusses the process of taking a new direction as a crime writer from the first ideas to writing Gallows Court, a novel very different from his earlier books, seeking a publisher and seeing the book through to publication: it has been acclaimed by Lee Child as "Superb... the book Edwards was born to write"'.

Martin Edwards' latest novel, Gallows Court, was published in September. He is consultant to the British Library's Crime Classics series, and has written sixteen contemporary whodunits, including The Coffin Trail, which was shortlisted for the Theakston's Prize for best crime novel of the year. His genre study The Golden Age of Murder won the Edgar, Agatha, H.R.F. Keating and Macavity awards, while The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books has been nominated for two awards in the UK and three in the US.

Editor of 38 anthologies, he has also won the Crime Writers Association Short Story Dagger award and the Crime Writers Association Margery Allingham Prize, and been nominated for an Anthony, the CWA Dagger in the Library, the CWA John Creasey Memorial Dagger, and a CWA Gold Dagger. He is currently President of the Detection Club and Chair of the Crime Writers' Association, and Archivist of both organisations. He has received the Red Herring award for service s to the CWA, and the Poirot award for his outstanding contribution to the crime genre.

Book tickets for Martin Edwards

Father Brown; from page to screen with Ceri Meyrick and Jude Tindall

Surrey Libraries are thrilled to welcome Ceri Meyrick, producer and developer of the top rated crime drama Father Brown alongside lead writer of the series, Jude Tindall who will talk about how they created the series; idea to screen. Father Brown has proved an international hit and has been successful in countries throughout the world. Ceri and Jude will give an insight into where the original idea came from and how they created the characters, the world of Kembleford as well as the process of adapting the series from the original books by G K Chesterton, as well as discussing the production and filming of the TV series and locations.

Book for Father Brown; from page to screen

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To Amsterdam and back; an evening with crime writer Daniel Pembrey

  • Wednesday 21 November, 7.30pm–8.30pm. Esher Library. Tickets: £5.

Daniel Pembrey is the author of the Henk Van Der Pol mysteries The Harbour Master and Night Market. Daniel promises to take you from Esher to Amsterdam (and back) in an evening. He will use examples from his own books, set in the Dutch capital, to discuss how location is an essential element in fiction – and how crime fiction in particular can offer a rich guide to foreign locations. Maximising audience interaction, he will cater to readers and any aspiring writers, sharing insights that he has gained from his journey as a full-time professional writer.

Daniel Pembrey grew up in Nottinghamshire beside Sherwood Forest. After studying history at Edinburgh University and receiving an MBA from INSEAD business school near Paris, he spent a decade working in America and more recently Luxembourg, coming to rest in Amsterdam and London. Dividing his time now between these two great maritime cities. He is the author of the Henk van der Pol detective series and several short thrillers, and he contributes articles to publications including The Financial Times, Country Life and The Sunday Times.

There will be the opportunity to purchase copies of Daniel's books at the event.

Book for Daniel Pembrey

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Getting Away with Murder: tea with crime author Sandra Hempel

Before the birth of modern forensic toxicology, it was frighteningly easy to get away with murder – provided you chose the right method. In the 1800s, arsenic could be bought for a few pence over the counter. It is fatal in tiny doses, undetectable in warm food and drink and produces the same symptoms as several diseases that routinely killed people. And even if its use was suspected, there was no way of proving it. No wonder then that it became known as the inheritor's powder.

Sandra Hempel is a former Times journalist and author who has written for a wide range of national newspapers and magazines. Her first book, The Medical Detective, looks at the struggle to understand the great cholera epidemics of the 19th century. Her latest book, The Inheritor's Powder, a Radio 4 Book of the Week, tells the story of a real-life murder mystery that marked the beginning of the science of forensic toxicology.

Book for Sandra Hempel

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Elly Griffiths - on tour at Horley Library

Join bestselling crime writer Elly Griffiths as she talks through her career and influences. A wonderfully engaging speaker Elly will discuss how she got her pen-name Elly Griffiths, her love of crime writing, and the influences on her writings and characters.

Book for Elly Griffiths

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Crime stories with Cliff Chapman

Surrey Libraries are delighted to welcome actor and voiceover artist, Cliff Chapman for a very special crime themed Storytime for Adults. The event forms part of the last week of this inaugural Body in the Library: Crime Fiction Festival and Cliff has chosen some delightful crime fiction short stories, to entertain, thrill and maybe even surprise you.

Enjoy a cosy, convivial afternoon tea and listen to some amazing short stories as part of our Body in the Library celebrations. Storytimes are not just for children!

Book for Cliff Chapman

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Coffee with Thriller writer Jessica Duchen at Weybridge Library

Inspired by a true incident – "the strangest detective story in the history of music" – Jessica Duchen's Ghost Variations traces the bizarre rediscovery in the 1930s of the long-suppressed Violin Concerto by Robert Schumann. In this thriller, set against a background of rising fascism, music itself is the victim...

Jessica Duchen, a London-born writer and music journalist, is the author of numerous novels, biographies and dramatic works including plays and opera libretti. She was music critic for The Independent for 12 years and has written for The Guardian, The Sunday Times and numerous music magazines. Her next book, Odette, is out in December 2018.

Copies of Ghost Variations will be available for purchase and for signing.

Book tickets for Jessica Duchen

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Why we are Crazy about Crime? An evening with crime writer William Shaw

Crime fiction currently outsells every other type of fiction in the UK. Why do we relish delving into the dark side so much?

William Shaw's The Birdwatcher was longlisted for the Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year and hailed as "a contender for thriller of the year" in The Sun. Elly Griffiths praised it as, 'an astoundingly good crime novel.' Salt Lane, also set in Kent, launches a new contemporary series featuring DI Alex Cupidi and has been optioned for TV by Expectation Entertainment. Peter James has called him, "one of the great rising talents of UK crime fiction." He's also the author of the Breen and Tozer series, set in late-sixties London. Before becoming a crime writer, William Shaw was an award-winning music journalist and the author of several non-fiction books.

Book for William Shaw

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Nine Lessons in Murder: an evening with crime writer Nicola Upson

Nicola Upson's crime novels featuring the author Josephine Tey have been praised as 'historical crime fiction at its very best' (Sunday Times) and 'a masterstroke of literary theft' (Independent on Sunday). Set in the 1930s, they weave original murder mysteries around a celebration of Tey's life and work, bridging the Golden Age and the contemporary. The latest, Nine Lessons, takes readers from Cambridge to the Suffolk coast, following a series of audacious murders inspired by M.R. James' famous ghost stories; the book has been shortlisted for the 2018 CWA Historical Dagger and was a Publisher's Weekly Best Mystery of 2017.

Book for Nicola Upson