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Shetland Arts’ annual book festival (8 – 11 November) goes on sale on Friday 7 September to the general public (on sale to Wordcard holders on Tuesday 4 September). Curated for the second year by Karen Cunningham, former director of Glasgow’s Aye Write! Festival, and featuring a great line up of authors and events!

Wordplay 2018 will be a real taste of Shetland and, taking this literally, features Shetland: Cooking on the Edge of the World by Tom and James Morton which explores life on the islands with food, drink and community at its heart and celebrates a very different kind of island paradise.

Shetland Arts is also delighted to welcome local writers Malachy Tallack, one of Shetland and Scotland’s most exciting new writers and his exquisite debut novel, Valley at the Centre of the World; poet and novelist Robert Alan Jamieson; Ann Marie Anderson and John Goodlad, for many years the voice of the Shetland fishing industry, bringing us the incredible stories of Shetland fishing and people in The Codhunters.

The festival is about bringing the best local, national and international writing to you and while the world we live in seems increasingly uncertain, we hope to cover some of these challenging issues through our debates and events.

The EU referendum in the UK and Trump's victory in the USA sent shockwaves through our democratic systems. In Democracy and Its Crisis A. C. Grayling investigates why the institutions of representative democracy seem unable to hold up against forces they were designed to manage, and why it matters.

In the year we celebrate the centenary of womens’ suffrage Deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats, Jo Swinson, talks about the steps we can take, small and large, to make our society truly equal, based on her book Equal Power.

Prizewinning natural history writer, Patrick Barkham with Islander: A Journey Around Our Archipelago, seeks to discover what it is like to live on a small island, and what it means to be an islander, a theme developed by journalist and novelist Amy Liptrot in The Outrun.

Wordplay also includes special screenings of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969) and Where the Wild Things Are.

To ensure that you can attend as many events as you want this year’s festival sees the return of the Wordcard an easy way to pay and get access to everything you want for only £45/£30. The programme is available now on online and in print. Tickets are available from, over the phone on 01595 745500 or in person at Mareel.


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