Katie Hickman's novel, The House at Bishopsgate, is set in 1611. Paul Pindar, rich merchant of the Levant Company, sets sail for England after ten years in the Orient. He brings with him his wife and a legendary diamond and arrives to find a country much changed. James I has succeeded Queen Elizabeth and an artistic Renaissance is flourishing. Pindar immediately begins to restore his great house at Bishopsgate to its former splendour. But all is not as it seems. Ceilia is frail, the marriage childless and an alluring widow becomes increasingly important to the running of the household and happiness of the inhabitants. Who is she, and what are her motives?
Katie Hickman is the author of seven previous books, including two bestselling history titles, Courtesans and Daughters of Britannia, and two travel books, one of which, Travels with a Mexican Circus, was shortlisted for the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award. She was shortlisted for the Sunday Times Young British Writer of the Year award for her novel The Quetzal Summer, and her novels The Aviary Gate and the Pindar Diamond have been translated into 19 languages.
Katie will discuss her novel in a panel event with Marianne Kavanagh, author of Should You Ask Me, a mysterious historical thriller set just before D-Day in 1944, on the Isle of Purbeck, Dorset. Mary Holmes enters a police station and says she has information about human remains recently discovered nearby. Her case is investigated by William, a police officer invalided out of the army after being seriously injured. Mary's confession brings his own violent past to the surface and two stories unravel.
Marianne Kavanagh is a journalist who has worked for publications such as The Sunday Telegraph, The Daily Mail, Tatler, Woman & Home and many others.
The event will be chaired by BBC Radio Solent presenter Steve Harris.
Wednesday 18th October 3.15pm
We really enjoyed the talks we attended... and look forward to next year's event... Kate Adie was brilliant
It is excellent that Dorchester is now on the literary map
William and I had a very interesting and often hilarious time putting (our presentation) together – fortunately we both wanted to be thoroughly prepared, so we refined and refined… we enjoyed ourselves, aided and abetted by the helpfulness of you and yours behind the scenes, the warmth of the audience, and the pleasantness of the setting. Speaking at your festival was an altogether happy experience. I only wish I had managed to organise listening to many of the other talks, which I really wanted to do… Many congratulations to you and all your team, and all wishes for Festival no. 3!
A really enjoyable and unusual event. I got a good feeling from it. And am so glad the Festival in general has gone well.
Very well organised, excellent variety in terms of author and presentation. Favourite was Tony Robinson, but I also really enjoyed Julia Shaw (memory very thought provoking), Richard Dannatt (good solid start to festival) JOHN Wright (local and good humour) Alison Weir (such research and knowledge) and Victoria Hislop (novel in a different style).
I did so enjoy being with you and doing my stuff. I hope to see you again, though I am so busy I don't seem to have time for writing much at present! I am
sure your festival will go from strength to strength….