Literary Lunch with Elly Griffiths & Val McDermid

Fri 19 Apr 2024 | 12:30pm - 2:30pm

Elly Griffiths & Val McDermid
Elly Griffiths - The Last Word
Val McDermid - Past Lying
Alex Clark

Book early for this year’s two course lunch with wine provided by the wonderful Parker’s Tavern, where murder is firmly on the menu. Two of our top crime writers Elly Griffiths and Val McDermid set down their pens, pick up their forks and treat us to a criminally good discussion about their writing lives, their latest page-turners and why crime writing is SO addictive. Perfect for Book Clubs, why not book a whole table and get 1 seat free!

In conversation with Alex Clark 

A two-course lunch plus a glass of wine is included. The event will take place in the Ballroom at the University Arms Hotel. Tables will be arranged in groups of 10, you will be allocated seats. Please check the seating plan upon arrival. If you have any special seating requirements or would like to be seated with friends who have booked separately, please let us know in advance.

Benefactor & Patron complimentary tickets cannot be redeemed against events at the University Arms.



Venue: University Arms hotel

Duration: 2 hours

Choose your tickets:

In-person tickets:
University Arms hotel
  Elly Griffiths & Val McDermid | Literary Lunch Full Price
12.30-2.30pm | Friday 19 April | University Arms hotel
  Elly Griffiths & Val McDermid | Literary Lunch Table for 10 - Get one seat free!
12.30-2.30pm | Friday 19 April | University Arms hotel
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Author biography

Elly Griffiths worked in publishing before becoming a full-time writer. She is best known for her award-winning Dr Ruth Galloway series and The Brighton Mystery series. In 2018, Elly wrote her first standalone novel The Stranger Diaries. The novel was a top 10 paperback bestseller, selected for the BBC Radio 2 Book Club, as a summer 2019 Richard and Judy book and won the Edgar Award for Best Novel in the USA. Her second standalone The Postscript Murders followed and her third standalone Bleeding Heart Yard published to glowing reviews in October 2022. The paperback of Bleeding Heart Yard was published in April 2023 and triumphantly stood as Hachette’s highest selling title of the week. In spring 2019, Elly published her first children’s book A Girl Called Justice to great reviews. The fourth published in May 2022. Elly lives near Brighton with her husband, an archaeologist. She is #18 on the list of most borrowed authors from UK libraries and is a hugely in demand for events, regularly holding audiences spellbound.  

Val McDermid has sold over 19 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 Tony Hill and Carol Jordan, which was adapted for television starring Robson Green and Hermione Norris. She has written three other series: private detective Kate Brannigan, journalist Lindsay Gordon and, most recently, cold case detective Karen Pirie. She has also published several award-winning standalone novels, books of non-fiction, short story collections and a children’s book, My Granny is a Pirate. Her latest Karen Pirie novel Still Life was published in paperback in February 2021, followed in May by a graphic novelisation of Resistance, her acclaimed 2017 radio drama series, illustrated by Kathryn Briggs and published by the Wellcome Collection.  

She is an experienced broadcaster with regular and hugely popular appearances on TV and radio. Val has guest edited BBC Radio 4’s Front Row, fronted features for BBC Two’s The Culture Show, written and presented many radio documentaries and appeared on a remarkable range of shows from Question Time to Have I Got News For You. In 2016 she captained the winning University Challenge alumnae team, having previously become Celebrity Mastermind champion!   

Val has won many awards internationally, including the CWA Gold Dagger, the CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger, the Grand Prix des Romans D’Aventure and the LA Times Book of the Year. In 2016 she received the Outstanding Contribution to Crime Fiction award at the Theakston’s Old Peculiar Harrogate Crime Festival and in 2017 she was elected a Fellow of both the Royal Society of Literature and the Royal Society of Edinburgh. She has served as a judge for both the Booker Prize and the Women’s Prize for Fiction, and chaired the Wellcome Book Prize in 2017. She is the recipient of seven Honorary Doctorates and is an Honorary Fellow of St Hilda’s College, Oxford. She is Visiting Professor in the Centre for Irish and Scottish Studies at the University of Otago in New Zealand. She is Patron of the Scottish Book Trust and a Trustee of the Homeless World Cup Foundation. 

Chair Biography

Alex Clark is a broadcaster and journalist, who writes for many publications including the Guardian, the Observer, and the Times Literary Supplement. She is a co-host on the Graham Norton Book Club for Audible and hosts the TLS podcast. She is a professional chairperson and appears all over the UK at Cheltenham, Hay and the Southbank Centre. Alex is a festival honorary patron.