Sunday, 14 August 2011

Reasons to be cheerful

Ingrid Bergman plays a nun

Despite all evidence to the contrary last week, things are looking up in north Manchester: there are now two literary salons within striking distance. Unfortunately, like buses, they've both come along at once.

So on Monday, 12 September, lovers of literature may choose either Bury Literary Salon which presents The Abbreviated Day at Bury Library - performed by poet and artist Joseph Minta, and friends. 7.30pm, £3/£2 Details to follow on Bury Library's facebook page.

Or they may head in the opposite direction to Waterstones, Deansgate, to the second Bookmarked Literary Salon, hosted by the talented and energetic Simon Savidge of his eponymous blog. He's in conversation with queen of crime, Val McDermid. 7pm, £5/£3

For those who have to wash their hair that night, the good news is that Manchester Literary Festival returns in October for thirteen whole days of book-packed action. There's a lot to choose from, including local lass Emma Jane Unsworth, whose novel Hungry, the Stars and Everything I have written about before, and the legend that is Allan Hollinghurst. For some reason, I also particularly like the sound of a performance of Sarah Dunant's historic novel Sacred Hearts in Manchester Cathedral on October 16th. It's the promise of singing nuns, I think. Gets me every time.

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