Monday, 12 February 2018

Criminal Activity detected in Camden


Simon & Schuster held their 2nd annual Crime Showcase, following the success of last year’s event [which was hosted in the Phoenix Artists Club in London’s West End].

To showcase their 2018 Crime / Thriller list, Simon and Schuster brought their guests to Camden, North London. Joining Mike Stotter, Ayo Onatade and I, were fellow journalists / bibliophiles Chris Simmons [Crimesquad], Karen Robinson [The Sunday Times], John Coates [The Express], Barry Forshaw, Jake Kerridge [The Telegraph], John Dugdale [The Guardian and Sunday Times], Rony Campbell and her colleagues from Breakaway Reviews – as well as many booksellers and bloggers.


Apart from the Publicity and Editorial Teams, many of the Simon and Schuster authors were present, including Felix Francis, Kate Rhodes, Andrew Wilson, Luca Veste, Chris Carter and Craig Robertson. It was good to congratulate the R J Bailey writing duo for their Barry Award Nomination, and Sarah Vaughan for scaling the UK book charts with ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL.


This year Jo Dickinson and her colleagues had much to celebrate as last year Chris Carter made No 1 in the UK with The Caller. We have enjoyed Chris’ dark tales for some time now, and he produced an essay for our readers which is available here


Also present was Andrew Wilson, the writer of the definitive biography of Patricia Highsmith [‘Beautiful Shadow’]. Andrew Wilson’s upcoming Murder Mystery featuring Dame Agatha Christie has been gathering excitement as has Craig Robertson’s dark thriller THE PHOTOGRAPHER, which our reviewer Maureen Ellis described as –

Craig Robertson writes with such ease and clarity, that even though the subject deeply unpleasant, he compels the reader ever onwards. The characters are strong and completely believable, though the plot is dark and very gritty, the evidence is slowly revealed until the reader is driven headlong to the excellent climax – breathless.



So before too long, Jo Dickinson welcomed the guests to the 2018 Simon and Schuster Crime Fiction Showcase, which we have captured on video below -


And so it was time to mingle, with wine, beer and canapes flowing as calmly as the conversation; as between slugs of wine, we had a look at was coming from this important publishing house.


After thanking the Simon and Schuster team it was time to head back into a dark and frosty London night, clutching a goody bag and the memories of a wonderful party with our friends and colleagues from Literature’s darkest niche – Crime and Thriller.


We present a series of photographs from the party.


For more information about the Simon and Schuster Crime Fiction List Click HERE


Photographs © 2018 A Karim 


Granite Noir - Friday 23 - Sunday 25 February 2018



Granite Noir - Friday 23 - Sunday 25 February 2018

MOST WANTED
OUR GRANITE NOIR HEADLINE EVENTS
TONY AND CAROL ARE BACK: A CONVERSATION WITH VAL MCDERMID
Friday 23 February, 8pm - 9pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge | £9.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Chaired by Fiona Stalker
BSL Signed
The one, the only, the magnificent Val McDermid joins us to talk about Insidious Intent, the tenth in her series featuring Tony Hill and Carol Jordan. This story of a clever murderer targeting needy single women will make your pulse race — and the novel’s astonishing ending will stop you in your tracks. 

FAMILIAR FACES, FANTASTIC BOOKS: IN CONVERSATION WITH HUGH FRASER AND ROBERT DAWS
Saturday 24 February, 5.30pm - 6.30pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £9.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Hugh Fraser will always be adored for playing Poirot's sidekick, Captain Hastings, as well as the Duke of Wellington in Sharpe. His first novel, Harm, introduced us to compelling, complex assassin Rina Walker. The latest in this series, Threat, sees Rina going head to head with Soho gangsters in 1960s London. It’s a tough assignment hitting close to home, and forcing her to confront unspeakable depravity. RADA trained Robert Daws has appeared in Midsomer Murders, New Tricks, Death in Paradise and Father Brown, to give just a few of his screen credits. He co-created and wrote the long running BBC Radio detective series, Trueman and Riley. The Killing Rock, is the third of his Sullivan and Brock novels, set in Gibraltar.

OUT OF THIS WORLD CRIME WRITING WITH CHRIS BROOKMYRE
Saturday 24 February, 7.30pm - 8.30pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £9.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Fabulous, funny Chris Brookmyre is back to talk about Want You Gone and Places in the Darkness! In the former, Jack Parlabane and a hacker known as Buzzkill must pull off an impossible heist, or lose everything they love most. Places in the Darkness, set on the first colony ship in outer space, introduces irreverent, irresistible sleuth Nikki Fixx, who never met a rule she wouldn’t break. Chris’s novel Black Widow, won 2016’s McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Book of the Year, and 2017’s Theakston Crime Novel of the Year. He sold out at 2017’s Granite Noir — don’t miss your chance to see him in 2018.

MEET THE CREATOR OF SHETLAND AND VERA: ANNE CLEEVES IN CONVERSATION WITH DR JAMES GRIEVE
Sunday 25 February, 12pm - 1pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge | £9.50 inc. bf. | BOOK TICKETS
BSL interpreted
Ann Cleeves has been called the successor to Ruth Rendell’s alter ego, Barbara Vine. She recently received the CWA’s Diamond Dagger, honouring contributions to the genre and a career of sustained excellence, and was the first writer to receive Iceland Noir's Honorary Award for Services to the Art of Crime Fiction. With Ann is Dr James Grieve, Emeritus Professor of Forensic Pathology at the University of Aberdeen, and a frequent consultant to crime writers, who appears as himself Ann’s Shetland novels. 

IN CONVERSATION
CRIME WRITER INTERROGATIONS
THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE — OR IS IT? WITH MATT WESOLOWSKI AND MICHAEL J MALONE
Friday 23 February, 12pm - 1pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
In Six Stories, Matt Wesolowski probed the nature of truth, telling the story of a murder from multiple perspectives via investigative journalist Scott King, whose Serial-like podcasts have made him a cult figure. Michael J Malone’s House of Spines also asks whether we can believe its central character’s version of the truth. At its heart is a writer with mental health problems who uncovers secrets about his late mother and her family. 

BREATHTAKING THRILLERS WITH LILJA SIGURDAROTTIR AND CATHERINE RYAN HOWARD
Friday 23 February, 2pm - 3pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Lilja Sigurdaróttir is a star in her native Iceland, but Snare, the first in her Reykjavik Noir trilogy, is her first novel to be translated into English. It’s already an international bestseller, with film rights sold to Palomar Pictures. Catherine Ryan Howard’s compelling thriller, The Liar’s Girl, takes us to Dublin, where the emergence of a copy-cat serial killer forces a young woman to return to the homeland — and identity — she abandoned, and confront her worst nightmare. 

MAY THE (POLICE) FORCE BE WITH YOU WITH SARAH WARD, MARI HANNAH AND JØRN LIER HORST
Friday 23 February, 6.30pm - 7.30pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
We’re delighted to welcome back author, reviewer, blogger, and Scandi Crime aficionado Sarah Ward, talking about her new DC Connie Childs novel, A Patient Fury. Mari Hannah is a former probation officer, whose award-winning, Northumberland-set Kate Daniels novels — now in development with Stephen Fry’s production company — vaulted her into crime fiction’s top tier. Jørn Lier Horst, author of the successful William Wisting series, has won the Riverton Prize, the Glass Key, the Martin Beck Award, and the Petrona Award. 

PUBLISH AND PERISH WITH LOUISE HUTCHESON, LUCY ATKIN AND SARAH STOVELL
Saturday 24 February, 11.30am - 12.30pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Louise Hutcheson’s debut, The Paper Cell, examines the deadly potential of literary envy — and its bitter, lifelong aftertaste. In The Night Visitor, by Lucy Atkins, a high-flying telly presenter and bestselling historian is tormented by her socially awkward researcher, who is privy to the most dangerous secret of her career. Sarah Stovell’s Exquisite is a claustrophobic psychological thriller about obsessive love, featuring one writer at the top of her game, and another still dreaming of success.

HERE’S LOOKING AT YOU, KIDS WITH MELANIE MCGRATH, COLETTE MCBETH AND SANJIDA KAY
Saturday 24 February, 1.30pm - 2.30pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Three authors, three gripping takes on the complicated relationship between parents and children. In Melanie McGrath’s Give Me The Child, a doctor confronts her husband’s past infidelity, and his love child. With her family in peril, she wonders if you can be born evil, and whether violent behaviour is genetic. An Act of Silence, by Colette McBeth, questions how far a mother will go to protect a son who is accused of murder. Is she desperate enough to risk other’s lives to save his? In The Stolen Child, Sanjida Kay portrays a frightened family threatened by the arrival of a man claiming to be their adopted daughter’s biological father — and he wants her back.

PAGE AND SCREEN WITH MJ ARLIDGE AND STEFAN AHNHEM
Saturday 24 February, 3.30pm - 4.30pm  | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Discover how two authors juggle work as novelists and screenwriters, and how those disciplines compare and contrast. MJ Arlidge writes the bestselling DI Helen Grace thrillers, the newest of which is Love Me Not. He’s an equally successful screenwriter, whose first job was writing for Monarch of the Glen. Sweden’s Stefan Ahnhem will talk about his Stockholm-set Fabian Risk thrillers, The Ninth Grave and Eighteen Below.

PETRIFYING PSYCHOLOGICAL NOIR WITH TORKIL DAMHAUG AND LOUISE VOSS
Sunday 25 February, 9pm - 10pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
The mind may be the most devastating weapon of them all. Torkil Damhaug, author of the best-selling Oslo Crime Files series, was a psychiatrist, and brings specialist knowledge to his taut thrillers. In Certain Signs That You Are Dead, forensic pathologist Jennifer Plåterud is called in to investigate the death of a hospital patient, and discovers she has personal links to this baffling case. Louise Voss has been writing psychological thrillers, police procedurals and contemporary fiction for 18 years. Her twelfth novel, The Old You, asks: How well do we know our spouses? What if your husband isn’t the man you think he is, but harbours a devastating secret, instead? 

WHEN BYGONES AREN’T BYGONES WITH JOHANA GUSTAWSSON AND CLARE CARSON
Sunday 25 February, 2pm - 3pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Introducing two mysteries hinging on deadly secrets from the past. French native Johana Gustawsson, now married to a Swede and living in London, co-authored the bestselling On se retrouvera, whose television adaptation in 2015 drew over 7 million viewers.  Clare Carson’s The Dark Isle, set in Orkney, finds Sam, daughter of an undercover agent who was killed in the line of duty, struggling to piece together the puzzle of his past.

THE WRITE INVESTIGATOR WITH WILL DEAN AND JAMES OSWALD
Sunday 25 February, 4pm - 5pm | The Lemon Tree Studio | £8.50 inc. bf. | BOOK TICKETS
Will Dean is the debut novelist everyone’s talking about. His novel Dark Pines, set in a remote Swedish town, introduces deaf journalist Tuva Moodyson, sent to investigate a body found deep in the woods. Will grew up in the East Midlands, studied Law, then moved to rural Sweden with his wife. There he built a wooden house in a boggy forest clearing, and it's from this base that he compulsively reads and writes. James Oswald is one of Scotland’s most popular authors, who’s just published The Gathering Dark, his eighth Inspector Edinburgh-set Tony McLean novel—and inked an exciting deal that sees him launching a new series this autumn. He was the only Scottish author listed in this year’s CWA ‘Dagger in the Library’ award. In addition to writing, James runs a sheep and cattle farm in Fife. 

WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE? WITH STUART TURTON AND FELICIA YAP
Sunday 25 February, 8pm - 9pm | The Lemon Tree Studio|  £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Two of the most talked-about recent debuts feature protagonists with unstable identities. Stuart Turton’s The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, has been called “Gosford Park meets Inception by way of Agatha Christie.” Felicia Yap, named one of the Observer’s Rising Stars of 2017, is sure to be one of the biggest names in crime fiction for years to come.

WORDS AND MUSIC, SCANDI STYLE. AN EVENING WITH THOMAS ENGER
Sunday 25 February, 8pm - 9pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge | FREE | BOOK TICKETS
We’re delighted to launch the UK publication of Killed, the final instalment of Norwegian bestseller Thomas Enger’s internationally renowned Henning Juul series. Packed with tension and twists, here is the long-awaited conclusion to the drama of this conflicted, disillusioned crime reporter, as he finally comes to grips with shocking revelations about who set the fire that killed his six-year-old son — and why. As well as talking about his writing, Thomas will play some of his stirring, original piano compositions, including the lullaby written to accompany Henning’s story.  

DON'T MISS...  LOCALS IN THE LIMELIGHT
Granite Noir is proud to offer a stage to North-east writers. This year five of the region’s most talented authors will read extracts from their noir fiction ahead of some of the festival’s main events. 
Friday 23 February
2pm Gavin Gilmour before Breaking Thrillers
Saturday 24 February
11.30 Jo Gilbert before Publish & Perish
5.30pm John Bolland before Familiar Faces, Fantastic Books
7.30pm Shane Strachan before Chris Brookmyre 
Sunday 25 February
10.30am Jan Simpson before Petrifying Psychological Noir
There will also be pop-up readings by these authors in the Central Library cafe throughout the weekend. 



CRIMEWATCH…… GRANITE NOIR FILM SCREENINGS
Tickets available to buy at www.belmontfilmhouse.com
DOUBLE INDEMNITY
Friday 23 February, 6pm | Belmont Filmhouse | £10 / £8 concession
Walter Neff (Fred MacMurray), a salesman for Pacific All-Risk Insurance, staggers into the office late one night to record a memorandum regarding the recent death of a policyholder: “I killed Dietrichson… for money, and a woman. I didn’t get the money, and I didn’t get the woman.” 
There’s nothing but a towel and a staircase between Neff and the woman when they first meet; Neff pays a house call on Dietrichson’s Spanish-revival pile in LA, and encounters the oil executive’s bored, platinum-blonde wife, Phyllis (Barbara Stanwyck). She’d like to know if she can secretly procure a life insurance policy for her spouse; Neff knows she’s conscripting him for her husband-disposal unit, and he knows that claims manager Barton Keyes (Edward G Robinson) will smell a putrefying rat, but they’ve got power-surge chemistry, and that’s a honey of an anklet she’s wearing… With diamond-hard repartee by Wilder and Raymond Chandler (by way of James M Cain’s novel) and ghoulish cinematography by the great John Seitz, this is the gold standard of ’40s *noir**, straight down the line. PG; 107 Mins; Director Billy Wilder; Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G Robinson; 1944; US.
Robert Daws chose Double Indemnity
A classic tale where the fool falls for the psychopath, it’s as fresh and as terrifying today as it was on first release. Film Noir at its best.”

THE BIG CLOCK
Saturday 24 February, 8.45pm | Belmont Filmhouse | £10 / £8 concession
Just 24 hours ago his life was perfect. Oscar-winning Best Actor Ray Milland stars in this smart and stylish thriller based on Kenneth Fearing’s novel and precursor to 1987’s No Way Out starring Kevin Costner. Milland portrays hotshot crime magazine editor George Stroud, who inadvertently becomes the subject of a murder investigation after spending an evening with his boss’ (Charles Laughton) mistress. She ends up dead and he is being framed by the actual killer. Meanwhile, at the publishing office, Stroud’s competent staff scurries for clues while he finds himself in a race against the clock. It seems the prime suspect they are seeking matches an all-too familiar description…his own! Maureen O’Sullivan and George Macready co-star in this richly told, often humorous story The New Yorker hailed as “slick and entertaining.” Known for its intriguing film noir cinematography and featuring beautiful costumes by Edith Head, this is one suspense classic you won’t want to miss.
PG; 95 mins; Dir John Farrow; Ray Milland, Maureen O Sullivan; 1948; US
Val McDermid chose The Big Clock:
When I read Kenneth Flaxner Fearing’s novel, The Big Clock, I was blown away by the cleverness and the originality of the plot. The film ratchets up the suspense, the performances are edgy, and because it’s told in flashback, it’s real edge-of-the-seat stuff. I’ve never understood why it doesn’t usually make the lists of ‘10 best noir films.”

THE BIG EASY
Sunday 25 February, 3.30pm | Belmont Filmhouse | £10 / £8 concession
In New Orleans, Remy McSwain, a lieutenant in Homicide finds that he has two problems, the first of a series of gang killings and Ann Osborne, a beautiful attorney from the D.A.’s police corruption task force in his office. He begins a relationship with her as the killings continue only to have charges filed against him for accepting bribes as he stumbles on a police corruption Sting. While this is happening, the criminals insist that none of the crime gangs are behind the killings.
15; 96 mins; Dir Jim McBride; Dennis Quaid, Ellen Barkin, Ned Beatty, John Goodman; 1986; US
Chris Brookmyre chose The Big Easy:
In a decade synonymous with morally simplistic, big-budget action thrillers, here was a gem of a crime movie in which all the lines are blurred. You will love the characters, you will love the music, you will love the food, and you will even love the bad guys.”


YOUNG CRIMINALS ….. GRANITE NOIR FAMILY EVENTS
WRITING WORKSHOP WITH ELEN CALDECOTT
Saturday 24 February, 11am - 3pm | Central Library | BOOK TICKETS
FREE (Ticketed event so booking required)
Award-winning Elen Caldecott is the author of children’s mysteries such as The Great Ice Cream Heist, Operation Eiffel Tower, and The Mystery of Wickworth Manor. In this hour-long workshop she’ll help aspiring young writers explore their creativity and look at how to develop an idea. She’ll cover characterisation, point of view, and pace. Bring your inspiration — we’ll supply pens and paper.
Recommended age: 8-10

STEVE & FRANDAN TAKE ON THE WORLD WITH RON BUTLIN
Saturday 24 February, 2pm - 3pm | Central Library | BOOK TICKETS
FREE (Ticketed event so booking required)
Poet, playwright, novelist, and former Edinburgh Makar Ron Butlin unveils this rollicking rollercoaster of a novel, packed with adventure and adversity. Steve is sick of being cyber-bullied, and of adults messing up the world. His best friends, twins Fran and Dan, agree. The trio sets off to solve the world — but wind up in hot water. They’re captured, but Fran manages to escape, and realises it’s up to her to mount a one-woman rescue. Guaranteed giggles and gasps in this hour with one of Scotland’s most engaging authors. 
Recommended age: 11-14

MAGIC, MYSTERY AND MAYHEM WITH MEG MCLAREN
Sunday 25 February, 1pm - 2pm | Central Library | BOOK TICKETS
FREE (Ticketed event so booking required)
Be mystified by amazing magic tricks as Meg McLaren introduces the characters from her book Life is Magic. Then hear from Meg's new mystery story, Pigeon P.I. Can you help find out who’s stealing all the feathers?
Recommended age: 0+ years

SFX MAKE UP WORKSHOP
Sunday 25 February, 3pm - 4pm | Central Library | £15 | BOOK TICKETS
Join theatre make-up artist specialist and teacher Raymond Wood for a hands on SFX make up workshop. Over the course of the session Raymond will demonstrate a number of stage make up special effects that could be found on a body at a scene of a crime. We’ll be imagining crime scene scenarios and teaching you how to create though make up the trauma wounds they might lead to. There’ll also be an opportunity to create your own special effects. This workshop is fun and packed with information. All materials and products are included. 
Recommended age: 16+


GRANITE NOIR WORKSHOPS
LEARN FROM THE BEST AND DEVELOP YOUR WRITING SKILLS
HIDDEN TREASURES:  NARRATIVE NON-FICTION FROM HISTORICAL ARCHIVES WITH DIARMID MOGG
Friday 23 February, 3.30pm – 4.30pm | Seventeen | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Writer and researcher Diarmid Mogg shares his experience of delving into historical archives to uncover fascinating but forgotten crimes and explains how he brought them to life in the Granite Noir exhibition – Crime Scene Aberdeen - and through Small Town Noir, his online exploration of the stories behind a unique collection of salvaged mug shots.

HOW TO GET AHEAD IN PUBLISHING WITH ORENDA BOOKS’ KAREN SULLIVAN
Saturday 24 February, 10am - 11am | Lemon Tree Lounge | FREE | BOOK TICKETS
Meet the powerhouse publishing phenomenon that is Karen Sullivan. In 2014 she founded Orenda Books, an independent press dedicated to literary and crime fiction, many of them works in translation. Her authors include Thomas Enger, Agnes Ravatn, Gunnar Staalesen, and Amanda Jenning. Karen will give an informal talk offering top tips to aspiring writers about how the publishing industry works, how to pitch, what to expect if a publisher asks to see your work, whether you need an agent, and what happens after a book is accepted for publication.

HOW TO PLAN YOUR NOVEL (AND GET IT FINISHED) PERFECTING PLOT, WITH KILLER WOMEN’S COLETTE MCBETH
Saturday 24 February, 3.30pm - 4.30pm | Central Library  | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
This master class demystifies the process of novel writing, helps you break down your story into manageable chunks, and shows how plotting will not only get you started, but take you all the way from the beginning to “THE END”. Learn about storyboarding techniques, outlining, character arcs and how to weave suspense into your novel. There will be useful tips (and hacks) for creating and managing multiple timelines and points of view, as well as ways to avoid the dreaded midway dip, and power through to the final chapter. 

CRAFTING COMPELLING CHARACTERS WITH KILLER WOMEN’S MELANIE MCGRATH
Sunday 25 February, 11am - 12pm | Central Library  | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Learn how to develop convincing, compelling characters, and discover how to use relationships between characters, story and setting to really make a character sing, dance — and murder. Discover how to craft likeable and unlikeable characters for stand-alones and series, and how to avoid the five most common pitfalls. This is a practical class. Be prepared for solo and team exercises. You'll leave having created two characters of your own from scratch.

WILLIAM HEPBURN: CRIME IN MEDIEVAL ABERDEEN
Sunday 25 February, 2pm - 3pm | Town House  | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
What crimes were committed in medieval Aberdeen? Who committed them? What measures did the authorities take to prevent and punish crime? This talk will draw on the work of the Law in the Aberdeen Council Registers (LACR) project to shed light on those who fell on the wrong side of the law in the streets of Aberdeen 500 years ago. It will look at the many acts of violence and breaches of the peace recorded in the UNESCO-recognised Aberdeen Council Registers. It will also focus on rare evidence for more serious crimes such as murder. It will show how crime was tried in Aberdeen’s courts and what kind of punishment people faced if they were found guilty. The talk will also showcase the work of the LACR project and offer tips for those keen to research Aberdeen’s history or find inspiration for creative writing.


UNUSUAL SUSPECTS - OTHER EVENTS FROM GRANITE NOIR
WANTED EXHIBITION OF POLICE WANTED POSTERS
The Lemon Tree
In a time before Crimewatch and the photo-fit, police ‘wanted’ posters were a common sight. They were one of the principal ways in which information about suspects, lost property or missing persons was disseminated. Their short-term purpose meant that they were often disposed of after the case had been solved. This exhibition draws on a collection of such posters that, instead of being thrown away once they had served their purpose, accumulated at Dufftown police station over many years and which now form part of the Grampian Police archive held by Aberdeen City & Aberdeenshire Archives. 
They cover a multitude of cases from petty theft and stolen motor vehicles through to missing children and violent crimes, including some notorious cases of murder, including those committed by Dr. Crippen. They are fascinating social documents with each one telling a vivid story.

CRIME SCENE ABERDEEN: EXHIBITION OF CRIME SCENE PHOTOGRAPHS
Friday 23 February - Saturday 3 March, | Seventeen |
Photography has been a useful tool in the police’s armoury almost since the invention of cameras, and photographs of a crime scene can prove vital to solving a case or securing a conviction. They may also inadvertently capture a wealth of detail that makes them fascinating to modern-day viewers. This exhibition displays a selection of crime-scene photographs from the Grampian Police archive, held by Aberdeen City & Aberdeenshire Archives, and tells the fascinating stories of the cases, ranging from burglary and petty theft to murder. Crime Scene Aberdeen has been created by writer and researcher Diarmid Mogg.

HIDDEN TREASURES: NARRATIVE NON-FICTION FROM HISTORICAL ARCHIVES
Friday 23 February, 3.30pm - 4.30pm | Seventeen  | £8.50 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Photography has been a useful tool in the police’s armoury almost since the invention of cameras, and photographs of a crime scene can prove vital to solving a case or securing a conviction. They may also inadvertently capture a wealth of detail that makes them fascinating to modern-day viewers.
This exhibition displays a selection of crime-scene photographs from the Grampian Police archive, held by Aberdeen City & Aberdeenshire Archives, and tells the fascinating stories ofthe cases, ranging from burglary and petty theft to murder. Crime Scene Aberdeen has been created by writer and researcher Diarmid Mogg.

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT IN ABERDEEN: WALKING TOUR
Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 February, Times TBC |  BOOK TICKETS
Join Chris Croly and the [M]apping team from the University of Aberdeen and Andrew Sage Art and Entertainment to take an interactive tour of sites associated with medieval and beyond crime and punishment in Aberdeen. Discover historic gaols, the Gallow Hill, learn about piracy, witchcraft, beheading and hanging. This tour will meet at Castlegate. #aberdeensdarkpast

POISONED COCKTAIL PARTY
Sunday 25 February, 8.30pm | 1906 Restaurant at HMT  | £25 inc. bf | BOOK TICKETS
Join us for a refreshing tipple at our not to be missed Poisoned Cocktail Party. Under the expert guidance of Dr Kathryn Harkup, author of A is for Arsenic and Making the Monster: The Science Behind Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, we’ll treat you to three specially concocted cocktails, all inspired by some of Agatha Christie’s favourite poisons. Our very own Granite Noir cocktails will feature on the menu and non-alcoholic versions will be available.
Drink them if you dare!

POISONED HIGH TEA
Sunday 25 February, 3pm | 1906 Restaurant at HMT  | £20 / £27 inc. Prosecco | BOOK TICKETS
What could be more inviting on a chilly Sunday afternoon than a plate piled high with warm scones, pastries and dainty sandwiches, washed down with strong coffee or aromatic tea? But beware! Dr Kathryn Harkup, author of A is for Arsenic, is here to remind us that in the hands of literary Grande Dame Agatha Christie, everything on the menu could — and did — become a lethal weapon. While you dine, Dr Harkup will talk about some of Christie’s favourite poisons, describing how the Queen of Crime deployed them, and where she found her inspiration. It all adds up to one unforgettable meal!


LATE NIGHT NOIR IN THE LOUNGE
FOLK
Saturday 24 February, 9pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge  | £5.50 inc. bf. | BOOK TICKETS
When Grace discovers her estranged mother has died, she journeys back to her island home. But the circumstances of her mother’s death unlock a strange new world that challenges everything Grace believes in. Led through a dark journey by a talking crow, a pedantic husband, a rebellious minister and spirited daughter, Grace’s scientific mind is overwhelmed by mythology, religion and spiritualism. 
A work-in-progress sharing of a new musical play which unites multi-disciplined artists Annie Grace, Alan McHugh and Morna Young with director Dougie Irvine. Co-written, co-composed and co-performed by the artists, FOLK is a contemporary folktale – a story of faith and love – exploring human existence in our modern world.

CRIMINAL MASTERMIND - CRIME WRITERS PUB QUIZ WITH RUSSEL D MCLEAN
Sunday 25 February, 5.30pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge  | £5 per person | BOOK TICKETS
Pit your wits against some of the festival authors and other crime enthusiasts in our Granite Noir pub quiz. Think you know your crime writing? Looking for a mental challenge? Looking for a fun activity to enjoy with friends? This quiz is for you. With some rounds specifically written by our authors, lots of prizes and friendly competition this will be a fantastic event for all our Granite Noir fans!
Max 6 per team or we can put you in teams on the night.

WORDS AND MUSIC SCANDI STYLE. AN EVENING WITH THOMAS ENGER
Sunday 25 February, 8pm - 9pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge  | FREE | BOOK TICKETS
We’re delighted to launch the UK publication of Killed, the final instalment of Norwegian bestseller Thomas Enger’s internationally renowned Henning Juul series. Packed with tension and twists, here is the long-awaited conclusion to the drama of this conflicted, disillusioned crime reporter, as he finally comes to grips with shocking revelations about who set the fire that killed his six year-old son — and why.
As well as talking about his writing, Thomas will play some of his stirring, original piano compositions, including the lullaby written to accompany Henning’s story.
Chaired by Lesley Anne Rose

NOIR AT THE BAR
Sunday 25 February, 9pm | The Lemon Tree Lounge  | FREE | BOOK TICKETS
Host Russel D McLean (founder of Glasgow’s Noir at the Bar) hosts this informal gathering of festival and local talent for a night of readings and hijinks. The format originated in Philadelphia and has sprung up around the world, becoming an international phenomenon. Anything can happen: you may hear new work, readings from published novels, maybe even a song or two. Get up close and personal with some of your favourite writers in a relaxed setting.

GRANITE NOIR TV
Introducing Granite Noir TV, our live streaming and pay per view service, new for 2018! Watch selected talks along with exclusive content and interviews. Check aberdeenperformingarts.com/granitenoir and social media for further details.

BOOKING GRANITE NOIR TICKET DISCOUNTS
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Sunday, 11 February 2018

The Genius of Betrayal by Stewart Binns

An autobiographical/first person approach to a fictional novel is a tried and tested technique, but it has advantages and disadvantages. It allows the reader intimate access to the character’s/author’s innermost thoughts, whether they be their positive aspirations or their darkest fears. It also offers the immediacy and tension of reality, but lays bare things that have been hidden away, or, are best not said.

In my case it offered a convenient way of telling a story I wanted to tell and saying some things I wanted to say, without compromising anything for which I have huge respect and without damaging anyone who doesn’t deserve to be damaged.

The genesis of Betrayal began in 2015. After writing two major historical series, one set in the Middle Ages and one focused on the First World War, I wanted to explore a more contemporary subject, one that could have real meaning for people living today.

In searching for a topic, I came across a soldier’s story, Rain, written by Barney Campbell. It’s also a first person/autobiographical tale about a British officer and his two tours of Afghanistan in 2009. I was completely absorbed by the book and read it in 48 hours. At the end, I was exhausted and in floods of tears.

Rain was the emotional spark that led me to think about Betrayal. Barney’s story made me think back several decades to my own modest time in the military and provoked memories which I had chosen to bury.

It wasn’t that my experiences were horrendous, like those described by Barney, and I certainly didn’t do anything even vaguely heroic, but they were in the context of a time in our country’s modern history which does not bear much moral scrutiny.

It also led me to think a lot about myself: who I am, where I come from and what I have done, both laudable and not so laudable. I am a child of the 60s, when I was appropriately radical, a persuasion that has survived to this day, even though I have to admit to many periods of doubt and introspection.

Anyway, the thoughts prompted by Barney’s novel made my realise that I had the basis of a sort of cathartic novel set amidst real events and real people in very distressing circumstances.

For me, the early 80s was a dark period in our history and Northern Ireland was one of the most shadowy parts of it. I wanted to tell a story of those times, which would cast a light on murky corners that have been hidden/obscured for many years.

My own military experience was with the SAS, for which I passed selection in 1980.  I applied for no other reason than bravado, not the most worthy of motives. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and the opportunity to try all sorts of challenges in all sorts of extreme conditions. It was a chance to play with some very special kit and meet some exceptional people. It was like a wonderful adventure holiday, paid for by the taxpayer. Except, of course, for the all-to-real business of Northern Ireland and Britain’s increasingly dubious role in the conflict.

I was able to go to Belfast several times during those days. They were visits that, added to my Anglo-Irish heritage, a lifetime’s interest in Irish history and many other visits, both north and south of the border, allowed me to weave the narrative of Betrayal.

So, I had a character and a context, but my respect for the Regiment and its soldiers, quite apart from my signature on an Official Secrets Act document, meant that I did not want to compromise anyone involved in one of the finest military cadres in the world. The details of Special Forces operations are kept secret for very obvious and good reasons.

So Betrayal is entirely fictional, as are the central characters, including Jim, the fictional me. Jim is only loosely based on the real me and is no more than a flimsy caricature, but he serves my purpose.

Finally, for obvious reasons, I am the only one who knows which parts of the story are true and which parts are fiction and that is how it must remain.

Betrayal by Stewart Binns (Published by Michael Joseph)
January, 1981. Jim Dowd is a British Special Forces soldier, highly-trained and loyal. With his colleague, army intelligence officer, Maureen O'Brien, he enters a bitterly divided Belfast with a mission: to go undercover with new identities, infiltrate one of the city's most dangerous Catholic communities, and help change the course of a war that nobody is winning. The Ardoyne is a perilous world, cut off from the law and run by dangerous men, where even a hint of Jim's and Maureen's true identities will prove fatal. But it is also full of pride, courage and loyalty, and Jim realises he admires this community - and as relationships form, his guilt at his deception grows ever stronger. When they receive shocking orders, Maureen knows they must act swiftly and ruthlessly, but can she rely on Jim? And if they rebel, are they betraying their country, or are they being betrayed?

More information about the author can be found on his website. You can also find him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter @StewartBinns