Scaling a new peak of rash over-ambition, Tim Moore ('Bill Bryson on two wheels,' according to the Independent) tackles the 9,000km route of the old Iron Curtain on a tiny-wheeled, two-geared East German shopping bike.
Asking for trouble and getting it, he sets off from the northermost Norwegian-Russian border at the Arctic winter's brutal height, bullying his plucky bike through the endless sub-zero desolation of snowbound Finland.
Sleeping in bank vaults, imperial palaces, and unreconstructed Soviet youth hostels, battling vodka-breathed Russian hostility, Romanian landslides and a diet of dumplings, Moore and his bike are sustained by the kindness of reindeer farmers and Serbian rock gods.
Haunted throughout by the border detritus of watchtowers and rusted razor wire, Moore reflects on the curdling of the Communist dream, and the Cold War generation reared on fear of apcalypse.
Three months, 20 countries and a 58 degree jaunt up the centigrade scale, man and bike wobble up to a Black Sea beach in Bulgaria, older, and wiser, but mainly older.
Sunday 22nd October 12.30
Thank you for organising the Dorchester Literary Festival. It was our first year...and will certainly attend again. We particularly enjoyed Victoria Hislop (with a good interviewer), Kate Adie and Dr Julia Shaw on Memory - excellent presentation and interesting subject.
I was particularly delighted by how many of the audience seemed to know and appreciate my work. As you know, authors are solitary creatures - mostly - and for me at least it's a real pleasure to have good reason to leave my work-room (a shed in the garden with a too-seductive view of the Cambrians) and meet and talk with readers and fellow writers (not forgetting that many of us are both).
I'm now back at my desk after Ann Cleeves' mammoth book tour and wanted to send a note to say a huge thank you for hosting such a fantastic event for us. It was a definite highlight out of the 30 events!
Paul was an excellent interviewer, and I loved the format. Great audience, acoustics...
Absolute pleasure, thanks for such an enjoyable night. I think having Tony Robinson there promoting his autobiography was a great idea...
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).