Literature Festival at Sea 2023.

Find yourself absorbed in a true literary haven, surrounded by fellow book lovers on board the 2023 Literature Festival at Sea. This event, curated by the programming team of The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, sees authors, poets, journalists, critics, and historians unite, bringing the spirit of the Festival to your voyage.

19-26 November 2023, Queen Mary 2.

Take your Cunard voyage to new heights thanks to this seven-day programme of inspiring events designed to celebrate the written word in all its variety. Guests include bestselling authors Lynda La Plante, Kate Mosse and Anthony Beevor; journalists Julia Wheeler and Daniel Finkelstein; literary agent Luigi Bonomi; and former Home Secretary and author Alan Johnson, to name just a few. Start your morning with a daily dose of the news from The Times journalists, before losing yourself in thought-provoking conversation at workshops, Q&A sessions, and speaker events that cover all manner of subjects, both fact and fiction. Listen as literary greats discuss books, art, film, history, and politics, and meet your favourite writers at intimate book signings. Find bookish delights around every corner on this voyage that promises to both elevate and inspire.

Special guests.

Anna Murphy.

Anna Murphy joined The Times as Fashion Director in 2015, having previously been the launch editor of Stella magazine at the Sunday Telegraph. She considers herself proof positive that a love of clothes and of books can happily co-exist in one well-dressed and well-read form.

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Hashi Mohamed.

Hashi Mohamed is a barrister at No5 Chambers and a Broadcaster and a published author. In 2010, he joined The Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn and completed his barrister training in London in 2012. Now at No5 Chambers, Hashi practices in public law; his main area of focus is Planning & Environmental law.

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Marcus Brigstocke.

Marcus Brigstocke is a multi-award-winning comedian, actor, writer, playwright, director and satirist. His TV credits include ‘Have I Got News For You’, ‘QI’, ‘Live At The Apollo’, and ‘Question Time’.

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Nikesh Shukla.

Nikesh Shukla is a novelist and screenwriter. He is the author of Coconut Unlimited (shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award), Meatspace and the critically acclaimed The One Who Wrote Destiny.

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Paterson Joseph.

Paterson Joseph is a beloved British actor and writer. Recently seen on Vigil and Noughts and Crosses, he has also starred in Peep Show and Law & Order UK and he plays Arthur Slugworth in the forthcoming Wonka movie.

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Rachel Parris.

Rachel Parris is a Bafta Award-nominated comedian, musician and improviser. She recently gained global attention for her satirical segments on BBC2's The Mash Report, garnering over 55 million views to date.

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Sharmaine Lovegrove.

Sharmaine Lovegrove is the Publisher of Dialogue Books, the UK’s only inclusive imprint, part of Little, Brown Book Group and Hachette UK. Dialogue Books is a home for a variety of stories from illuminating voices often missing from the mainstream.

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Julia Wheeler.

Julia Wheeler is an experienced journalist and interviewer who worked for the BBC for more than 15 years, including as Gulf Correspondent. She continues to work as a freelance journalist.

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Richard Osman.

Richard Osman is a British television producer and presenter on shows including Pointless and Richard Osman’s House of Games. The Thursday Murder Club, his first novel, is the fastest-selling adult debut novel since JK Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy.

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Jason Solomons.

Jason Solomons is one of the UK's best-known film critics. He is a regular on BBC News, hosting the Oscar nominations and BAFTA red carpet live shows, and the weekend Film Review. Jason hosts Movie Talk on Sky Arts and Virgin Atlantic's What's on Vera entertainment highlights show.

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Kate Mosse.

Kate Mosse is a number one international bestselling novelist, playwright and non-fiction writer. She is the author of six novels and short story collections including the multimillion-selling Languedoc Trilogy (Labyrinth, Sepulchre and Citadel) and Gothic fiction The Winter Ghosts and The Taxidermist’s Daughter, which she is adapting for the stage.

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Greg Mosse.

Greg is a ‘writer and encourager of writers’. He has worked for many years as editor, dramaturge and script consultant in theatre, film and novels. As well as running writing workshops for Guardian Masterclasses, Southbank Centre and Chichester Festival Theatre, he is the founder of the Criterion New Writing script development programme at the Criterion Theatre, London, now in its fifth year.

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Lynda La Plante CBE.

Lynda La Plante was born in Liverpool. She trained for the stage at RADA and worked with the National Theatre and RDC before becoming a television actress. She then turned to writing– and made her breakthrough with the phenomenally successful TV series Widows. Her novels have all been international bestsellers.

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Jamie Susskind.

A past Fellow of Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Jamie Susskind studied history and politics at Magdalen College, Oxford, graduating first in his year before turning to law. Jamie's award-winning bestseller Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech, was published in 2018.

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Clare Mackintosh.

Clare Mackintosh is the multi-award-winning author of I Let You Go, which was a Sunday Times bestseller and the fastest-selling title by a new crime writer in 2015. It also won the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year in 2016.

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Luigi Bonomi.

After studying English Literature at UCL and at Dartmouth College in the USA, Luigi became an editor at children’s publishers Macdonald Futura where he worked on the Enid Blyton estate. While there, he created one of the first Young Adult Children’s publishing lists in the UK.

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Antony Beevor.

Antony Beevor’s books include Crete (Runciman Prize) Stalingrad (Samuel Johnson, Wolfson and Hawthornden Prizes); Berlin; The Battle for Spain (Premio La Vanguardia); D-Day (RUSI Westminster Medal); The Second World War; Ardennes 1944 (shortlist Prix Médicis); and now Arnhem, another international Number 1 Bestseller.

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Yvonne Battle-Felton.

Yvonne is a writer of fiction and creative nonfiction. Her novel Remembered was longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, and her writing has been published in literary journals and anthologies.

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Artemis Cooper.

Artemis Cooper's books include Cairo in the War, 1939-1945; Writing at the Kitchen Table, the Authorized Biography of Elizabeth David; Patrick Leigh Fermor, an Adventure; Elizabeth Jane Howard: A Dangerous Innocence, and Paris After the Liberation 1944-1949, which she wrote with her husband Antony Beevor.

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Alan Johnson.

Alan’s childhood memoir This Boy was published by Bantam Press on 9th May 2013. It won the Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize, and the Orwell Prize, Britain's top political writing award. His second volume of memoirs. Please Mr Postman, was published in September 2014 and won the National Book Club award for Best Biography.

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Val McDermid.

One of the UK’s most accomplished and respected novelists, Val McDermid has sold over 18.5 million books to date across the globe and is translated into more than 40 languages. She is perhaps best-known for her Wire in the Blood series, featuring clinical psychologist Dr Tony Hill and DCI Carol Jordan, which was adapted for television starring Robson Green and Hermione Norris.

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Alan Titchmarsh.

Alan Titchmarsh grew up in Ilkley, Yorkshire. He is a gardener, writer, novelist and broadcaster best known for programmes such as Ground Force, The Chelsea Flower Show and Secrets of the National Trust. He has also presented the BBC Proms and hosts the Saturday breakfast show on Classic FM.

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Clare Chambers.

Clare Chambers began her career as a secretary at the publisher André Deutsch in 1990 when Diana Athill was still at the helm. They not only published her first novel but made her type her own contract. She has written eight further books, including Learning to Swim (1998), which won the Romantic Novelists’ Association best novel award.

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Daniel Finkelstein.

Daniel Finkelstein, OBE, is the Associate Editor, a Columnist and Leader Writer for The Times. He also sits in the House of Lords as Lord Finkelstein. As well as his weekly political column in the comment section and his Saturday Notebook, he writes the “Fink Tank” for the Saturday paper, a statistical column on football.

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Andrew Hunter Murray.

Andrew Hunter Murray is an author, comedian and broadcaster. His Sunday Times-bestselling novel The Last Day was published in 2020 and was one of the top ten fiction debuts of that year; his second novel, The Sanctuary, was published in 2022.

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Event Voyages.

These voyages offer a unique opportunity to meet like-minded individuals and immerse yourself in a theme of your choice.