Mwhahaha. The Book Grocer rubs her hands together greedily as she contemplates the week ahead. Festival season kicks off this week, and its offerings may be summarised with one word: excellent.
Tuesday: VS Naipaul fans will want to head to Daunt Books tonight to hear Patrick French and AN Wilson discuss French’s recent biography of the Nobel Prize-winning author, The World Is What It Is, heralded as a “magnificent achievement” (7pm, £5).
Wednesday: Broadcaster and author Jonathan Dimbleby is at the Royal Geographical Society to discuss and sign copies of Russia: A Journey to the Heart of a Land and Its People, the travelogue of his 10,000-mile journey around the country that Churchill dubbed ‘a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma’. The book description alone gives us a mean case of wanderlust (7pm, £7.50).
Thursday: Penned in the Margins hosts Visions of the City at the Bishopsgate Institute. Iain Sinclair will be on hand to read from his work, as will poets Chris McCabe, Hannah Silva, and Tom Chivers (7pm, £7/£5 concessions).
Also on: Word Up at Late @ Museum in Docklands celebrates wordsmithery in a mingling of genres: spoken word poetry, hip hop, and comedy. Performers include Polar Bear, Nathan Caton, and Richard Sandling. Word up, indeed (6pm, free).
Saturday: Oi. Our head hurts. There’s just too much good stuff to choose from today, as both the London Literature Festival and London Lit Plus officially get under way. Highlights of the former include the Best of the Booker Prize (7.45pm), Dirty Books (yes, it may make you blush, but don’t you want to parse the nuances of “literary pornography”? 8pm), Josie Long’s Splendid Evening (7.30pm), and spoken word event Fresh on the Stage (10pm). Pick up some tips at the creative writing tent (for a price), share your used books and acquire some news ones (for free), or play a game of Scrabble (also free). If all this overwhelms, head to Speakers’ Corner for a London Lit Plus event featuring readings by Legend Press authors (2–4pm).
Ticket prices vary, so check the festival sites for more details.
Know of an event that belongs in the Book Grocer listings? Please e-mail us at londonist-at-gmail-dot-com.