We have some fantastic guests for you for our 2023 festival, listed here in alphabetical order
Alice Bell grew up in South West England. She has previously worked in retail but since 2016 she has worked full time as a video games journalist. In 2018 she became the deputy editor of Rock Paper Shotgun, a popular and respected PC gaming website. In 2019 she was named one of the 100 most influential women in the UK games industry.
After spending several years in London, Alice now lives in Brighton, where she reads a lot of books and plays video games where you can set things on fire and make elves kiss. She has probably read more detective fiction and watched more episodes of Midsomer Murders than you. Grave Expectations is Alice’s debut crime novel.
Tom Benn’s first novel The Doll Princess was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Portico Prize, and longlisted for the CWA’s John Creasey Dagger. Benn’s creative nonfiction has appeared in the Paris Review and he won the BFI’s iWrite scheme for emerging screenwriters. His first film Real Gods Require Blood premiered in competition at the Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for Best Short Film at the BFI London Film Festival. Oxblood was awarded the 2022 Sunday Times Charlotte Aitken Young Writer of the Year Award and longlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize and the CWA’s Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel of the Year. Originally from Stockport, he teaches on the UEA Crime Fiction Creative Writing MA and lives in Norwich.
Sam Blake a multiple No 1 bestselling crime writer, who has been shortlisted for Irish Crime Novel of the Year three times. Her 7th bestseller, The Mystery of Four, and her recently published YA debut, Something Terrible Happened Last Night, are both in shops now. Follow her on social @samblakebooks and find out more at www.samblakebooks.com, where you can join her Reader’s Club and get a free book. Sam is the founder of Ireland’s International Crime Writing Festival, Murder One, and is the co-ordinator for National Crime Reading Month in the UK and Ireland (June 2023). She is a board member of the Society of Authors and the Crime Writers Association.
Disha Bose was born and raised in India, and has been living in Ireland for close to a decade. She worked in the Tech startup industry before pursuing a Masters in Creative Writing at UCD. Dirty Laundry, a domestic noir set in West Cork, is her debut novel. An Irish Times Bestseller, Dirty Laundry was selected as a Good Morning America Bookclub pick, and as An Post’s Booktok Bookclub’s inaugural selection.
Breda Brown is the chairperson of the Irish Writers Centre, the home for writers in Ireland. She presents the ‘Inside Books’ podcast and reviews crime novels for the Sunday Independent. A former journalist, she is a regular contributor to radio and television programmes and is also the co-founder of Unique Media, a strategic communications firm.
Andrea Carter is the author of The Inishowen Mysteries. She grew up in Ballyfin, Co. Laois, and graduated in law from Trinity College, Dublin, before qualifying as a solicitor and moving to the Inishowen peninsula. Having practised law for nearly twenty years, more recently as a barrister, she now writes full time. Her books are in development for television and her short story The Lamb was shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards in 2019. Death Writes is her sixth novel.
The Sunday Times said ‘Carter excels in re-creating the cloistered, gossipy confines of a small Irish village…the Inishowen peninsula community where everybody knows everybody else’s business is a fine stand-in for the mannered drawing-room society of a Christie mystery.’
Jane Casey was born and brought up in Dublin. A former editor, she has written eleven crime novels for adults and three for teenagers. Her books have been international bestsellers, critically acclaimed for their realism and accuracy. The Maeve Kerrigan series has been nominated for many awards: in 2015 Jane won the Mary Higgins Clark Award for The Stranger You Know and Irish Crime Novel of the Year for After the Fire. In 2019, Cruel Acts won Irish Crime Novel of the Year at the Irish Book Awards. The Killing Kind was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick and is being adapted for television. Jane lives in southwest London with her husband and their two children.
Amanda Cassidy is a freelance journalist, commissioning editor and former Sky News and Newstalk reporter. Shortlisted for the Irish Journalist of the Year Awards, and more recently the Headline media writing awards, Amanda holds a BA in European Studies from Trinity College Dublin. Amanda’s debut novel Breaking has been described as ‘a rich gut-punch of a thriller that delivers a confronting examination of maternal love” by New York Times bestselling author, Ashley Audrain. Amanda lives in Dublin with her husband and three young children.
Marie Cassidy worked as a Consultant Forensic Pathologist in Glasgow for thirteen years Marie Cassidy became a forensic pathologist in 1985 following her training as a histopathologist. She worked as a Consultant Forensic Pathologist in the Department of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology in Glasgow for the next thirteen years investigating unnatural deaths and homicides, from gangland shootings and stabbings, to drugs deaths, road traffic accidents and suicides. In 1998 she returned to her family’s homeland of Ireland as deputy state pathologist, working alongside Professor Jack Harbison. When he retired, she was appointed State Pathologist and, like her predecessor, her name became synonymous with murder and tragedy. In over thirty years of practice she has performed thousands of postmortems and dealt with hundreds of murders. She has witnessed the burgeoning role of forensic science and the impact that has had on death investigation and the expectations of the general public, while embracing new technology and welcoming the input of experts in the other sciences. She retired at the end of 2018 to spend more time on the other passion in her life, her family. She lives in London. Her number one bestselling memoir Beyond the Tape was published in 2020. Body of Truth is her first novel.
Steve Cavanagh is a critically acclaimed, Sunday Times best-selling author of the Eddie Flynn series which has sold a million copies in the UK. His third novel, The Liar, won the CWA Gold Dagger for Crime Novel of the year 2018. Thirteen won the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime novel of the year 2019. FIFTY FIFTY was a Richard and Judy Book club choice, and the BBC Between The Covers book club choice. All of his novels have been nominated for major awards. His last four novels have all been Sunday Times Bestsellers
Liza Costello has written two psychological thrillers: The Estate (2019) and Crookedwood (2022), both published by Hachette Ireland. The Estate was originally released as an Audible Original, where it was chosen as a crime and thriller book of the month. Her short stories and poetry have been published in places like Mslexia, The Stinging Fly, The Irish Independent and The Manchester Review. She has been shortlisted for the RTE Radio 1 Short Story Prize, among other Irish writing awards, and came joint second for the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award for an unpublished collection.
Ciara Doorley is Publishing Director at Hachette Books Ireland. She commissions and edits a broad range of non-fiction, from memoir and self-help to spiritual and social history, and fiction, including bestselling novels by Roisin Meaney, Sophie White, Louise Phillips, Emily Hourican and Catherine Kirwan.
Martin Doyle has worked for three decades as a journalist in Ireland and Britain. He was Editor of The Irish Post in London before spending five years with The Times in London. He joined The Irish Times in 2007 and has been Books Editor there since 2018.
Alice Feeney is a New York Times million-copy bestselling author. Her books have been translated into over thirty languages, and have been optioned for major screen adaptations. Including her novel Rock Paper Scissors, which is being made into a TV series by the producer of The Crown. Alice was a BBC journalist for fifteen years, and now lives in Devon with her family. Good Bad Girl is her sixth novel.
Tana French is the Sunday Times and New York Times-bestselling author of In the Woods, The Likeness, Faithful Place, Broken Harbour, The Secret Place, The Trespasser and The Wych Elm. Her books have won awards including the Edgar, Anthony, Barry and Macavity awards, the LA Times Book Prize for Best Mystery/Thriller and the Irish Book Award for Best Crime Fiction. She grew up in Ireland, Italy, the US and Malawi, and trained as an actor at Trinity College Dublin. She lives in Dublin with her family.
Janice Hallett studied English at UCL, and spent several years as a magazine editor, winning two awards for journalism. Her debut novel, The Appeal, was the Sunday Times Crime Book of the Month and a Waterstones Thriller of the Month. Her second novel, The Twyford Code, was published in 2022 and the Nibbie for Best Crime and Thriller book at the British Book Awards. When not indulging her passion for global adventure travel, she is based in West London.
Sophie Hannah is a Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling writer of crime fiction. Her books have sold millions of copies worldwide. She is the founder and coach at Dream Author Coaching, a programme that has helped more than a thousand writers to create more success and happiness in their writing lives.
Sophie’s murder mystery musical, The Mystery of Mr E will be released as a movie on 1 December 2023. In 2013, Sophie’s novel The Carrier won the Crime Thriller of the Year Award at the Specsavers National Book Awards. She has also published two short story collections and five collections of poetry – the fifth of which, Pessimism for Beginners, was shortlisted for the T S Eliot Award. Her poetry is studied at GCSE, A Level and degree level across the UK. Sophie is a Fellow of Lucy Cavendish College in Cambridge.
Joe Joyce is the author of seven historical crime novels, mostly set during the Second World War. His Echoland series is set in Dublin during the Emergency and his latest book, No Second Take, is set on the Riviera during the filming of a classic French film in the 1940s. He is also the author of three non-fiction books including, with Peter Murtagh, the classic account of Charles Haughey in government, The Boss.
Casey King is a crime writer from Co. Cork, Ireland. Her debut novel, DECEIT, the first in a series of female-led gritty gangland thrillers featuring crime boss, Danielle Lewis, will be published by Joffe Books September 21st, 2023. Casey has a Diploma in Policing Studies and over twenty years’ experience in the Irish police force. She has a H Dip in Coaching/Coaching Psychology as well as a Post Grad in Mindfulness Based Wellbeing. She facilitates courses on mindfulness, wellbeing along with creative writing. She is also on the panel of Arts Facilitators for Cork County libraries. Casey is represented by London agent, Kate Nash, of Kate Nash Literary Agency. She can be found on Twitter @letstalkcrime
Catherine Kirwan grew up on a farm in the parish of Fews, County Waterford. She studied law at UCC and lives in Cork where she works as a solicitor. Her first novel, Darkest Truth, was chosen as Cork’s One City One Book in 2019. Her second book, Cruel Deeds, is out now in paperback, published by Hachette Ireland, and her third, ‘A Lesson in Malice’, was published in June 2023, also by Hachette Ireland.
WINNIE M LI
Winnie M Li is an author and activist. Her latest novel Complicit draws from her earlier career in the film industry. It was a New York Times’ Editors’ Choice, listed among the Best Crime Novels of 2022 by The Irish Times, CrimeReads, and Glamour, and shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature’s Encore Prize for outstanding second novel. A Harvard graduate and George Mitchell Scholar, Winnie studied at University College Cork and later worked as a film producer before her life was disrupted by a violent stranger rape in Belfast in 2008. Inspired by that experience, her debut novel Dark Chapter was translated into ten languages, won The Guardian’s Not The Booker Prize and was nominated for the Edgar Award. Winnie also co-founded Clear Lines, the UK’s first-ever festival addressing sexual assault and consent through the arts and discussion. She was profiled in the TV3 Ireland documentary Unbreakable: True Lives, nominated for Irish Tatler’s Woman of the Year Awards, and holds an honorary doctorate of law from the National University of Ireland in recognition of her writing and activism. American by birth, Winnie currently lives in the English countryside. http://winniemli.
Sarah Liddy has been working in Irish publishing for the last 20 years, mostly in commissioning roles. In that time, she has worked with many best-selling authors such as Luke O’Neill, Trisha Lewis, Niall Breslin and Dermot Whelan. Other chart-topping books she has commissioned include Richie Sadlier’s acclaimed memoir Recovering and Daniella Moyles’ Jump. She has acquired books across all genres including wellness, cookery, children’s and memoir.
Gaye Maguire enjoyed a long and award-winning career as a TV Producer/Director before giving up work to focus solely on her passion for writing. Her debut novel BLOOD MOTHERS (2023) explores the fallout decades later from Ireland’s cruel treatment of unmarried mothers and their babies. It introduced DS Kate Hamilton and her colleagues in the Serious Crimes Squad, and quickly hit the Amazon Top 100 gaining five star reviews. Her second novel DARK WATERS (2023) also gets 5 star reviews on NetGalley, and delves into the murky world of online predators and the dangers they present to young people on social media.
Andrea Mara is a Number One Irish Times, Top Ten Sunday Times, and Number One Kindle bestselling author, who has been shortlisted for a number of awards, including Irish Crime Novel of the Year at the An Post Book Awards in 2022, 2021 and 2018.
Her novel All Her Fault was Sunday Times Crime Book of the Month, a top ten bestseller in the UK and in Ireland, and a Kindle Top 5 bestseller. It has sold over 170,000 copies and has been optioned for TV.
Hide And Seek, published in 2022, charted in the Irish Times bestseller list for five weeks. Her newest book, No One Saw A Thing,was published by Transworld/ Penguin Random House in May 2023. It was a Number One bestseller in Ireland and Number One bestseller on Kindle. She lives in Dublin, with her husband and three children.
Michelle McDonagh’s debut novel There’s Something I Have To Tell You became an Irish bestseller when it was published in April of this year by Hachette Ireland. Michelle has been writing stories since she was a child in primary school, and it had always been her dream to write a novel. After far too many years of intense procrastination, she enrolled in the an online novel writing course in 2019 and decided to step back from journalism for a while to focus on finishing her first novel. A native of Galway, she has over 25 years experience as a journalist. She was a staff reporter with The Connacht Tribune in Galway for twelve years before going freelance. She worked for all of the Irish national and tabloid papers covering news and courts, before switching solely to features and health, mainly for The Irish Times. She now lives in Blarney where she is married with three children, and a very cute cavapoo.
Harry McGee is a political correspondent with The Irish Times and previously worked for the Irish Examiner, the Sunday Tribune, RTÉ and the current affairs magazine Magill, which he edited. He has written and presented TV documentaries in English and Irish for RTÉ and TG4, and he produced the podcast series, GUBU, for The Irish Times. A native of Salthill, Galway, he is a graduate of the University of Galway and the King’s Inns. The Murderer and the Taoiseach is his first book.
Paul McNeive writes a weekly opinion column for the Irish Independent and works as a motivational speaker. His first book, Small Steps, an autobiographical business book, was a bestseller in Ireland. Paul’s first thriller, The Manhattan Project, was also a bestseller in Ireland, and was published internationally. Paul’s latest thriller Poison Sky, has recently been published and he has another thriller due for release in 2023.
Originally from Dublin, Ivan Mulcahy set up his London-based literary agency in 2002. Ivan helps public figures make their autobiographies or memoirs into bestsellers. He has a strong list of experts, across many different fields, whose books have become bestsellers. He also enjoys working on subject-led non- fiction books with successful people who bring a deep knowledge, an original perspective and a strong public reputation.
His authors have written major bestsellers on, for example, economics, food, history, fashion, human relationships and have been sold in dozens of countries. He has a great love of literature and is proud to help some exceptional writers build their literary careers and win prizes.
Kitty Murphy lives on the very westerly edge of Co. Clare, Ireland. Death in Heels, and Death in the Dark, murder mysteries set in a fictional Dublin drag scene, are out now, published by Thomas & Mercer.
Deirdre Nolan is publishing director of Eriu, the Irish imprint of Bonnier Books, publishing adult and children’s fiction and non-fiction. She previously worked for Gill Books and New Island, and completed a stint as a journalist that made her realise books are more fun. She is currently commissioning stories that are of interest to Irish readers and have international potential, and has a particular interest in discovering the next great Irish crime writer.
Polly Nolan – After almost twenty years’ commissioning and editing children’s books at some of the UK’s top publishing houses, Polly moved to agenting in 2013 and quickly built a talented and successful list of clients. In 2020, she started her own agency and consultancy, PaperCuts
Ltd, which represents authors writing for adults and children (5 to Young Adult), as well as
offering advice to anyone needing help with their work. Always on the lookout for a good story, arrestingly told, Polly has a particular love of Middle Grade – especially MG that makes people laugh – and, in adult fiction, stories with unforgettable characters.
Liz Nugent was born in Dublin in 1967. She first began to write for broadcast in 2003. Between 2003 and 2013, she worked as a Story Associate on the popular television soap opera Fair City. She has also written several pieces for Sunday Miscellany, a popular RTE Radio series. In 2006, her first short story for adults, Alice, was shortlisted for the Francis McManus Short Story Prize. Her first four novels – Unravelling Oliver, Lying in Wait, Skin Deep, and Our Little Cruelties have each been Number One bestsellers and she has won four Irish Book Awards, as well as the James Joyce Medal for Literature. Her “wickedly dark, twisted and brilliantly observed” fifth novel, Strange Sally Diamond, was published in the UK & Ireland by Penguin Sandycove in March 2023, and went straight to number one.
Gill Perdue is the author of bestselling crime novel If I Tell (previously published as The Interview) and nominated for Crime Novel of the Year in the An Post Book Awards 2022. If I Tell is the first in the Shaw and Darmody series of crime thrillers published by Penguin, set in the fictional Dublin suburb of Clonchapel.
In June 2023, When They See Me, the second in the series was published and received excellent reviews – described as ‘a thrilling read,’ (The Independent) and ‘an impressive follow up,’ (Belfast Telegraph.) She also writes for children. Her first children’s novel, Adam’s Starling, won a Bisto Award (the Eilís Dillon Memorial) for that year.
Gill lives in Rathfarnham with Kevin and Angus (one of these is a dog).
Karen Perry is the Sunday Times bestselling author of Your Closest Friend, Can You Keep A Secret, Girl Unknown, Only We Know, Come A Little Closer, Stranger, and The Boy That Never Was, which was selected for the Simon Mayo Radio 2 Book Club. She has published four novels writing as Karen Gillece and was a recipient of the European Union Prize for Literature in 2009. She lives in Dublin with her family.
Remie Michelle Clarke is an internationally acclaimed voice actor, an author, and a podcast host for Film Network Ireland. In 2017, Clarke edited and wrote for The Broken Spiral, a Dublin UNESCO City of Literature anthology of short stories by Irish authors in aid of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, where she volunteered as a crisis counsellor. One of its stories, ‘How to Build a Space Rocket’ by Roisín O’Donnell, won the Short Story of the Year award at the Irish Book Awards 2018. Clarke’s award-winning debut novel, The Glass Door, was published by Dalzell Press in 2018. Her short stories have been widely published. She was part of the 2018 XBorders:Accord writing project in association with the Irish Writers Centre and Arts Council Northern Ireland. She holds a BA and the Gold Medal in English from Trinity College Dublin. She is represented by Paul Feldstein of the Feldstein Agency.
CATHERINE RYAN HOWARD
Catherine Ryan Howard is the award-winning, no. 1 bestselling author of seven thrillers including the lockdown thriller 56 Days which was named a best thriller of 2021 by the New York Times and the Washington Post, and won An Post Irish Crime Novel of the Year. It is currently being developed for television by Amazon Studios/Atomic Monster. She is published in 19 languages and her work has been shortlisted for the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award for Best Novel and the CWA John Creasey and Ian Fleming Daggers, and longlisted for the Dublin Literary Award 2023. Her latest thriller is The Trap.
Simon Trewin has spent thirty years working as a literary agent and his authors have been published in over 54 languages and sold many millions of copies. In 2019 he launched his own agency to represent authors, brands and entrepreneurs in the areas of art, culture, digital, literature, and live events. He is also the founder of vintage letterpress studio The Garage Press.
Colin Walsh’s short stories have won several awards including the RTE Francis MacManus Short Story Prize and the Hennessy Literary Award. In 2019 he was named Hennessy New Irish Writer of the Year. His writing has been published in the Stinging Fly, the Irish Times and broadcast on RTE Radio 1 and BBC Radio 4. KALA is his first novel. He is from Galway and lives in Belgium.