Bookmarked Crime Night… The Report

Last week was the second Bookmarked Literary Salon and what a criminally good night it was. You all know how much I love a good crime novel so to have the legendary Val McDermid and wonderful debut novelist M.J. McGrath (or Melanie as I’m now allowed to call her) was bliss for me. I went and did that silly getting nervous thing again, fortunately it didn’t last long and we were soon chatting away between having our photos taken together before it all started off.

After each author had done a reading it was time for a good old natter, you may notice we changed the seating from last time so it’s less authors vs. hosts. The conversation flowed and it all went far too quickly.

Val had some really interesting insights into how crime is changing through technological advances and not just in the case of solving crimes but in what you write. Her son has been reading some of her earlier novels and after reading about Kate Brannigan hunting down a phone box for a few pages asked why she didn’t just use her mobile phone? We also discussed social media, how psychopaths are using it to their advantage. Apparently there is now a twitter account called Vance On The Run which is apparently Jacko Vance, Val’s own creation, who is trying to follow her! How mad is that? Mind you I follow Jackson Brodie on twitter, erm let’s move on…

Melanie had tales to tell from quite another world, the arctic, and how her friends can Facebook her and tell her they have a dislocated shoulder but can’t get to a hospital or drugs delivered because they are so remote. As she spent lots of time in the arctic as a journalist (and wrote ‘The Long Exhile’ which I am now desperate to read) she also had wonderful tales to tell of the Inuit life and how she became a figure of fun after locking herself out her house, with only ten minutes till she would freeze to death, and getting to grips with peeing when it becomes an icicle mid-flow. Oh and a brilliant semi-tragic tale about a hunter who met his match with a polar bear he was after. It was utterly fascinating.

Too soon and it was all over. Time to sign books for the wonderful audience who came along, including Polly of Novel Insights, and made it such a wonderful event we didn’t want to end.

In fact we loved it so much we might just be having another meeting of the same minds next year, we shall see. Val and Melanie have said they will and Melanie even wrote a contractually binding comment in my copy of her book, so I’ll be holding them to that!

Thanks again if you were in the audience, I did speak to some of you but not all. It was a wonderful evening and if you couldn’t make it I hope this post gives you a feel for the night. I’m loving this salon malarky, can you tell?

Bookmarked will be back in just under two weeks, time really flies, on Monday the 3rd of October for a Victorian themed evening (with two of my favourite books of 2011 and their authors) of ‘Sensational Stories’ as Jane Harris will be discussing ‘Gillespie and I’ and Carol Birch will be talking about ‘Jamrach’s Menagerie’, as well as all things Victoriana based, to say I am excited would be an understatement. I hope to see you there (if not I will report back again)!


Filed under Bookmarked Literary Salon, M.J. McGrath, Val McDermid

8 responses to “Bookmarked Crime Night… The Report

  1. Sounds great. But a dislocated soldier in the Arctic — what did she do with him?

  2. Lovely! That sounds like so much fun!

  3. Ruthiella

    Wow, this sounds fantastic and the next event, even better. I don’t suppose these events could be podcasted? So we outside of the UK could have a peek and vicariously attend?

    • Well I have started a podcast with Gav of Gav Reads called ‘The Readers’ which will be featuring interviews with all the guests who come. Bookmarked is having a revamp after xmas so maybe a podcast could be worked upon. We will see.

  4. Helena

    Oh, I would love to be there for the next event! I just simply LOVE victorian novels. I have just finished reading (like 3 minuites ago) “Gillespie and I” witch I started two days ago after reading your rewiew of it. And WOW! I’m absolutely blown away! What a good book! I would love to meet Jane Harris and hear her talk about her book but I live in Stockholm (Sweden) so it’s a bit far to travel to be there but I’ll look forvard to your report of the evening. Thanks also for your blog. I just resently discovered it and I love it! I mean, what can be wrong when the first thing that you see is a picture of Daphne Du Mauriers “Rebecca”? 😉

    • Haha, thanks Helena. I hope you have been enjoying the Discovering Daphne season. We discuss the amazing Rebecca next week.

      Shame there isnt a teleporter from where you are to here, it was a wonderful night with two wonderful authors.

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