Here is our line up for 2022!
As well as a few regulars, we have plenty of new talent as well.
Details of the rest will appear shortly as the information comes through.
Ginny Davis - writer, performer & public speaker
Patrick Kingdom QC has it all: a success practice, large house, happy family, a close friendship with a High Court Judge and a beautiful lover. A misdirected email changes everything.
After a tramp’s body is pulled from the Regent’s Canal, the QC, his lover and the judge are caught up in the police investigation into the death. The witness oath to tell the truth governs criminal trials. But what really is the truth? Should it always be told?
Ginny was born in Birmingham and educated at schools in Birmingham and Malvern. She first trained as a secretary and linguist and worked as a translator at the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and as Headmaster’s secretary at Kingham Hill School, Oxon. She then read law as a mature student at the University of Cambridge. In 1989 she was called to the Bar and practised criminal law in the Midlands until the birth of her children when she became a stay at home mum. She would not call this giving up work. Since 2007 she has been a full time writer and performer. She lives in Warwickshire with her husband and dog.
Georgina Jeffery - Author
The Jack Hansard Series
An urban fantasy series with a wide streak of humour and a lot of British folklore. Jack Hansard, occult salesman, turns reluctant detective when his mythical merchandise is stolen and becomes embroiled in a supernatural kidnapping case. Trolls, Shellycoats, Kelpies, and even the legendary Phoenix won't stop him from chasing the elusive thief... right into the jaws of danger.
A dark fantasy series of short stories reimagining old myths in modern settings - from a seductive troll granting wishes in the Norwegian wilderness to an aging dragon tended by a conscientious grandma in Poland. Pop by Georgina's table for a chance to win an eBook copy of these stories at the festival!
Georgina will have signed copies of her books for sale alongside a range of fantasy-themed goodies. She's looking forward to meeting people at the event and would love to chat about your favourite books, folklore, and everything in-between.
Georgina Jeffery is a speculative fiction author based in Shropshire where she writes in frenetic sprints during her daughter's nap times and very late into the night. Her stories blend elements of fantasy, humour and horror, and tend to reflect her interest in mythology and folklore from around the world.
Georgina's work can also be found in a variety of journals and anthologies including The San Cicaro Experience, The NoSleep Podcast, Unbreakable Ink, and Copperfield Review Quarterly.
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Georgina-Jeffery/e/B08PP9M9FY
Jason Cobley - Author
This is the story of Private Robert Gooding Henson of the Somerset Light Infantry and his journey from the farm to the trenches.His story is that of the working-class Tommy; young men caught between rural values and a new kind of war. It is a story where the land knows no time.
"Early Somerset-set scenes evoke Laurie Lee, whilst the later scenes based on the Western Front bear comparison with Goodbye to All That and Remarque's masterpiece." - Ewan Laurie
'An elegy for a world swept away by the horrors of the first World War. A book written with so much love; beautifully written and deeply moving' - Phillip Gwynne Jones
"deep and touching" - Beyond the Books
JM Cobley was born in Devon of Welsh parents and now lives in Warwickshire with his wife, daughter, dog and rabbit. By day, he teaches English, but also writes. The central character of his new novel A Hundred Years to Arras, published by Unbound, is based on his relative Robert Gooding Henson, who fought in Arras in 1917. He will also be signing copies of the follow-up The Mines of Arras and Other Stories. He is currently working on another historical novel set during the Tonypandy Riots of 1910.
Available from all booksellers in paperback and e-book formats.
Anna Patrick - Author
No Going Back
Arrested by the Gestapo for carrying a gun, Marta has to think fast.
With a mixture of courage, cunning and sheer good luck, she faces down her interrogators and protects her beloved fiancé. But at what cost to her?
Nothing in her privileged background prepares her for the horrors of Ravensbruck concentration camp in Germany. Close friendships and an unshakeable belief help her survive.
As the war ends, she has to pull together the fragments of her shattered life. What does the future hold and will she ever see her fiancé again?
Blending imagination with historical fact and the memories of an exceptional woman, No Going Back is a tale as gripping as it is moving and offers a unique insight into modern Europe’s darkest period.
After a career in journalism, public relations and teaching, Anna took early retirement and published her first book called No Going Back, based on a true story. She has since written a sequel, Reckoning, about the aftermath of World War II and is now busy writing a contemporary novel.
She lives in Leamington Spa with her husband, Mike, and a black cat called Buster.
You can find out more about her on her website:
Charley King - Author
Mr Blinking appears to have everything: money, status, successful businesses, even a football team, but when he accidentally meets up with a very plucky mouse called Molly in his shop everything changes.
Molly threatens to expose Mr Blinking to the Mice Mafia when he tries to make her homeless and reveal his selfishness on social media if he carries on being motivated by greed.
Molly wants to help the refugees in Mr Blinking’s trainer factory but haunted by his parents Mr Blinking resists being helped and fights tooth and nail to carry on living his selfish life. Molly isn’t having any of it.
Charley King was born in Buckinghamshire, England. As a child, she was an enthusiastic amateur gymnast. She loved books and her favourite three were 'My golden book of animals', 'Tim Mouse' by Judy Brook and 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,' by Roald Dahl. After leaving college she worked as a PA during the cold war for the Ministry of Defence and carried on working as a secretary until she left work in 1993 to look after her adopted son. Charley's imagination started to grow when she created her kitchen garden and noticed all the little creatures in her vegetables and flowers. The first story she wrote was about a ladybird that lived in her garden. Since then in her everyday life stories spring into her mind and she can't wait to get them down onto paper. After writing her first story Charley decided she wanted to illustrate it so she joined her local art group of which she is still a member today. Charley uses watercolour paints for her illustrations and describes on her website how she creates them.
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mr-Blinking-Charley-King/dp/1916395341
Anne Harrison - Author
A truly original story of life in and after care. The author’s own account of being left behind by her mother as a one-year-old and her life in foster homes and institutions. When eventually traced, ‘Call Me Auntie’ was the best her mother could offer, but this was just the start of a bizarre sequence of events.
Call Me Auntie is a telling account of abandonment, ‘Heartbreak House’ care homes, family history and survival. It is also one of resilience and personal achievement as the author discovered she also had a brother left behind in the same way, forged a professional. career, searched for her long-lost relatives in Barbados and eventually came to understand that she ‘may be a princess after all’.
Call Me Auntie is a story of survival, resilience and changing attitudes to racism and ethnicity as the author forged a successful career beginning as a Woolworth’s shop girl before joining the police, then moving into social work.
Anne’s mother came to England from the Caribbean as one of the Windrush generation. Abandoned soon after birth, Anne entered the care system. She was fostered by a white family in Rugby before being moved to a children’s home. She was a Woolworth’s shop girl before she left school and joined the police. From there she became a residential social worker and social care manager, working for the Coventry and Warwickshire local authorities. She is now happily retired, living with her husband. She has one son and two stepsons, all grown up. She is the author of Call me Auntie: My childhood in care and my search for my mother, published by Waterside Press in 2020, available from https://www.watersidepress.co.uk/books/call-me-auntie-harrison-9781909976801/.
Chris Burleigh - Poet
In 2017 I decided to gather together the best of my work and to self-publish a collection of poetry and wit as Particles of Light. The book has been well received and has sold well in my local bookshops.
Intersecting Lines, my second collection, was traditionally published by indie publisher Beercott Books in 2021. It continues to reflect my interest in people, love, the natural world, and the human condition, and is written very much with the reader in mind.
‘Life is serious, but is not to be lived too seriously’.
Serious or humorous, my poems are always good-natured.
I write when I have something to say, and I feel I have found the right way to say it.
I have been writing poetry all my adult life as my response to scenes, situations, people and emotions. Over the years, as poetry took up more of my time, I joined writers’ groups, and started entering poetry competitions with some success. I have been published in anthologies by Fish Publishing and Indigo Dreams.
I hope readers will enjoy reading my poems, and will feel I am putting their own experiences and emotions into words.
It’s such a great feeling when you get good feedback and review comments, or when somebody chooses to take home a copy of your words from a bookshop. That’s communication!
I read regularly at poetry ‘open mics’ and at local literary events, and I give talks about my poetry to community groups.
Anthony Etherington - author
Caradea, Eastern Europe, Spring 2030 – Marta Ionescu, thirty-four and single, lives alone in a small apartment on the run-down Goval estate. She has good friends, a secure job and runs a popular youth club. But with her elderly mother growing increasingly fragile and her boyfriend, Arpad, frequently absent and drinking heavily, Marta’s optimism is fading fast. Worse, she has discovered a series of photographs that suggest Arpad might be involved in sex trafficking. Her dream of settling down and having children in limbo, Marta decides to look elsewhere for the husband of her dreams. But Arpad does not take his rejection kindly and, when Marta agrees to help newly widowed Michael Brancusi with his troubled teenage daughter Steffi, she sets off a chain of events that threatens the people and things she loves and, ultimately, her own life.
A former shop manager, mental nurse, recruitment & development specialist and drummer, Anthony has written several teleplay pilots and audio plays as well as three feature length dramas. One of these, Yellow Dragon and the Red Fox, won Best Screenplay awards at the European Independent Film Festival and The International Film Festival of Wales in 2014. Two of his short scripts – Flotsam and Gemma’s War – have been filmed and are available to view on YouTube
Europia is his debut novel.
Marilyn Pemberton - author
A Teller of Tales is the first of a historical trilogy that tells of Lizzie, who takes out her frustrations at the constraints put on women by telling tales. Her own story is one of prejudice, loss, duty and yes, love. It is set in Wednesbury in the 1820s and the collection of tales that Lizzie writes is a thread that continues in the other two books of the trilogy: A Keeper of Tales, due to be published at the end of 2022 and A Seeker of Tales, due to be published Spring 2023.
During research for my PhD, I “discovered” Mary De Morgan, a Victorian writer of fairy tales. I wrote her biography (Out of the Shadows: The Life and Works of Mary De Morgan) but there were still gaps in my knowledge so I decided to write a fictional novel based on her life (The Jewel Garden).
My second novel, The Song of the Nightingale: a tale of two castrati, is a historical novel set in 18th century Italy that tells of two young boys who are bought from their families, castrated and then trained to be singers. It tells of passion, revenge, jealousy, love and redemption. This book won the Fiction category of the 2020 International Rubery Book Award.
I have also just submitted a stand-alone novel to my literary agent, set in 1936 in Egypt.
Andrew Mullaney - author
If you are a mentor, wish to be mentored, or are seeking to be the very best version of yourself, then this book is for you. It cuts across the generations in the form of a handy, easy to read guide to surviving and sometimes winning at life. Using the game of snakes and ladders as a constant theme and analogy, each chapter covers many of the challenges and dilemmas that we all face on a daily basis. Andrew encourages you to take everything on with full consciousness and gives practical advice, tips, examples and experiences from his life and career as well as sharing others’ stories too. This also includes the opportunity to learn from some of the mistakes he’s made over the years, which he bravely and honestly shares throughout. At the end of every chapter, you will find a bullet point summary of ladders to climb, helping you secure quick wins, as well
find a bullet point summary of ladders to climb, helping you secure quick wins, as well as the snakes - i.e. pitfalls - to avoid. This means you can take away what you feel is most relevant to you in a quick “grab” style format. This book is one that will get you questioning why things happen and how you can influence the game of life much more that you realise. Ultimately, you’ll learn how to get the best possible outcome for you as you roll the dice and make your next move. About the book the author says: “The principle theme of the book would be my belief that life is a game, a series of games in fact, that we can choose to play in full consciousness in order to survive and sometimes win. The book would be for others as a route map, guide, series of tips, experiences and reference points to ensure that there was help, hope and a handhold on the cliff face of life should people ever need someone else to turn to.”
Born and bred in the Black Country, Andrew J. Mullaney is a proud family man and has had a successful 35 year career in banking. He lives in Stourbridge with his wife and two grown up children. Now retired and a regular volunteer he is passionate about giving back and guiding others where he can. He began writing his debut book “Didn’t Anyone ever Tell You? It’s All A game!” In the summer of 2019 to not only fulfil a lifelong ambition to be a published author but also with the aims of making a difference, helping people to become the best version of themselves that they can be and to leave a legacy.
Pauline Crame - author
The Affairs of Gods and Men, is self-published. It is a fictionalised account of real events. It was short-listed for the Luke Bitmead Bursary.
Polly lives in suburban Britain in relative affluence. Kabita lives in the foothills of the Himalayas in relative poverty. When the car in which their husbands are travelling plummets down a mountainside, their lives become entwined.
Her first book, Song in the key of Madeleine, is published by The Book Guild. Before publication it was shortlisted for the 2013 Yeovil Prize.
Madeleine has survived an abusive childhood. Shibu has grown-up in a traditional Indian Catholic family. The two begin an affair. Soon passion becomes challenged by guilt and ghosts from the past.
Pauline grew up in Wiltshire and moved to the midlands in the mid-eighties, where she continues to live. Writing has been her passion for many years. Although she has written several short stories and some poetry, she concentrated mainly on writing novels. Two of which have been short-listed for national prizes. Her full time job is working as a mentor in a college for students with special needs. She is a mother and grandmother.
Jason Wilson - author
With the passing of his crime boss father, Jason Wilson began writing 'The Old Man and Me: A Gangster's Life, A Son's Journey'.
Both a biography of crime boss Anthony Spencer and Jason's own memoir of life and work with his late father,' The Old Man and Me' tells of a search for answers: what transformed a successful businessman into the Midlands' Public Enemy No. 1?
Recently published by Mirror Books, the book is the subject of numerous articles, the author the subject of several podcasts, the book receiving rave reviews and more than 200 Amazon ratings to date.
Previously an animation artist, graphic novelist and psychology graduate, Jason wrote The Old Man and Me whilst working as a mental health worker during the pandemic. He is now working on 'Square Pegs' due to be published in 2023.
Adam Wood - author
This 162-page softcover book features a detailed account of the Whitechapel murders of 1888, a history of Swanson's handwritten notes discovered 50 years after his death which name the chief suspect and what happened to him, and an examination by the author into the events described in Swanson's marginalia.
Donald Sutherland Swanson was born in the far north of Scotland, leaving for London in 1867. The following year he joined the Metropolitan Police and began patrolling the streets of the capital as a uniformed constable. When he retired 35 years later, in 1903, he had risen to the rank of Superintendent of the CID at Scotland Yard, the top detective in the country.
On 15th September 1888 Swanson was hand-picked by Commissioner Sir Charles Warren to lead the investigation into the Whitechapel murders by the so-called Jack the Ripper, as a result learning more about the case than any other officer as he read every report, statement, letter and telegram.
Although the mystery was never officially solved, more than 50 years after Donald Swanson’s death his grandson discovered private handwritten notes which seemed to finally explain what happened to the murderer – and to name him at last.
Adam Wood is a historic true crime author who lives in Chapelfields, Coventry.
Adam is Executive Editor of Ripperologist magazine, the leading publication dedicated to the serious study of the Whitechapel murders and their place in social history. From 2017 to 2021 he was Editor of the Journal of the Police History Society.
His other books include The Watchmaker’s Revenge, an account of the long-forgotten shooting rampage in Victorian Coventry by watch finisher Oliver Style, set against the backdrop of the vibrant watchmaking community of the 1840s-1880s; The Case of the Painted Bicycle Lamp; Swanson: The Life and Times of a Victorian Detective and Murder on the Brighton Express.He is also co-author with Police historian Neil Bell of Sir Howard Vincent’s Police Code 1889.
Amy Clennell - Poet
Art. Nature. Films. News headlines. Her Life and her loved ones’ lives.
Everything around Amy Clennell inspires her to write. But writing is more than just an artistic venture for her – she has found that crafting her poems provides solace in her own life too.
In March this year her first book of poetry, Renaissance, was published by Cherish Editions. It is the first poetry book to be published by them receiving some very favourable reviews on NetGalley. Amy sincerely believes that its content will resonate with others and may also prove to be helpful as well as enjoyable.
Amy says, “My condition, cerebral palsy, leaves me with some obvious and some hidden disabilities. At times, such difficulties lead to conflict, frustration and insecurity. For example, experiencing some problems with vocal articulation, I have found that committing words to paper gives me more opportunity to formulate my thoughts, emotions and responses. In many ways, for me, writing is a healing and motivating process.”
Having cerebral palsy in my case means that I am a wheelchair user and am also visually impaired. Because of my disabilities I cannot see enough to read and cannot use my hands for reading Braille, typing or writing. However my disability does not define who I am.
My home is in Long Itchington, a neighbouring village of Southam. I graduated from Coventry University in 2007 with a degree in Theatre and Professional Practice after which I lead drama workshops for both adults and children with disabilities. In recent years I joined a creative writing group where I was encouraged to enter competitions. Some of my poems and short stories have received awards and have been published in anthologies.
Trigger Hub - https://triggerhub.org/product/renaissance-amy-clennell/
Or if you like real bookshops, it's available in Kenilworth Book Shop, Talisman Square.
Rugby Café Writers
We are a lively gathering of writers, poets and playwrights;
Around fourteen of us meet in the Thirteen Bells Café, Rugby, to talk about our work, for encouragement, advice, and to enjoy sharing our journey along that hazardous road into print.
We discuss anything from tackling writer’s block to promoting sales of our books.
Jennifer Jenkins - author
In 1665 a box from London brought more than cloth from plague-ridden London to the quiet village of Eyam in Derbyshire. For the next year the villagers had to learn to live with a silent enemy. 'Three' tells the story of three very different women in their courageous attempts to keep themselves and their loved ones alive as Eyam closed its doors to the outside world, instead facing the malevolent danger alone. Emmott Syddall, Catherine Mompesson and Elizabeth Hancock were each determined to live and the courage each of them found was as unique as the women themselves. Will 1666 bring salvation?
‘Three: A Tale of Brave Women and the Eyam Plague’ is my debut novel. The beautiful front cover was designed by my talented husband, David. I hope to write more books in the future.
I live in a village just outside of Rugby in Warwickshire with my husband, two sons and lovely little dog (for those of you who love the Hairy Maclary books, he’s a Snitzel Von Krumm!). I work for Coventry Diocesan Board of Education supporting local schools with Religious Education and spiritual development. I love all things literary, baking, crafting and walking in the countryside.
Brian Pollitt - Bookbinder & Repairer.
Brian's passion is to breathe new life into books that are of personal value and have precious memories associated with them, as well as creating new books to capture new memories.
What books do you treasure? -Typically they are family bibles, granny's cook book, children's books, photo Albums.
Such well-loved books are often damaged from use over the generations or just by accident. You may be afraid to use such books for fear of further damage but worry not - most can be returned to at least a safe-to-use functional condition and many can be restored to their former glory.
If your book is too delicate or valuable to repair, then it can be protected by making a custom-made clam-shell box to protect it.
For books you want to keep in good condition, slip cases are great way to protect them.
You may have a collection of papers, photos or memorabilia that need collating into a dedicated binding to keep them together and protecting, or maybe a story you wrote as a child and would like it binding into a book – pretty much anything is possible if you have the imagination.
Bring your books along and Brian will examine the damage and explain what can be done to bring them back to life, whether it is a repair or designing a completely new binding to your requirements. He can also provide a guide to its value.
There will also be some of Brian's most recent new bindings, including blank notebooks for sale. For the practical types, there will be some journal kits if you want to have a go at making one yourself.
Brian is a book repairer and restorer who focuses on books of personal value, rather than
conservation of books with historical significance and high commercial value. This started off
as a hobby some years ago after having some old family books passed to him. Having worked
with a number of bookbinders to develop his skills, word of mouth has got around and now
has enough work coming in to keep him out of mischief.
BeerCott Books - publisher
Beercott books is an independent publisher of craft and theatre related books. Based in Warwickshire, close to Leamington Spa and the Shakespeare town of Statford-upon-avon, our aim is to provide readers with quality books by passionate authors.
Beercott books was founded in 2017 by husband and wife team Kerry and Simon. The name is a combination of names from their ancestors – Beer and Medlicott, and the logo is a combination of animals from the corresponding coats of arms.
Kerry has a passion for all things craft (but especially knitting), and Simon a passion for theatre.
Sara Rose - Apollo Creative
Hand stamped keepsake bookmarks and enamelled homeware accessories.
I began to create hand stamped bookmarks as I was guilty of two cardinal book sins - folding down the corners of the page or folding round the dust jacket to use as a book mark.
Please forgive me book gods and fellow readers!
A good book deserves a great bookmark and Apollo Creative and the ever increasing range of different themed bookmarks was born.
Warwick Bahá’í Bookshop
Despite its name, this is neither based in Warwick, nor a bookshop! It was started by Paddy and Ann Vickers when they lived within the Warwick district, but they moved to Southam in 1983 and have been here ever since. They actually sell books at events and by post. They started publishing in 1989 - firstly leaflets, and then small books from 2012. These books and leaflets are all to do with the Bahá’í Faith. Paddy and Ann have been Bahá’ís since the beginning of the 1970s, so this is a labour of love, rather than a commercial enterprise.
They specialise in affordable books - small compilations from the Bahá’í Writings, simple history and introductory books, and books for children. There are 19 titles so far, prices range from 50p to £1.50. They sell across the English-speaking world and also some of their books have been translated into other languages including Spanish, Latvian, and Swahili.
Although most of the books are for those who are interested in learning something about the Bahá’í Faith, one in particular may be of interest to many. Called “Inspiring Words for Daily Life”, it was produced as a result of the first lockdown and has proved very popular. Another uplifting book, produced in response to the invasion of Ukraine, is called “Words of Peace”.
Nearly everything is written by Paddy and Ann or their daughter Helena. Everything is designed and edited in Southam and then printed by Clintplan in Southam, who have given wonderful service over the last 3 decades.
Southam Heritage Collection
Southam's museum is based in the town centre and has published several books by local authors on themes related to the town's history. All the books are priced under £10 and cover a wide range of fascinating subjects. Their short film will present both authors and volunteers talking about the books and other merchandise available to buy from the museum. All proceeds from book sales go to support the work of this small heritage charity.
Southam Lions - second hand book sale.