Join renowned writers for a relaxed and intimate day of readings and public conversations chaired by Dermot Bolger. This year’s line-up features award winning authors Jennifer Johnston, Mary Costello, Martina Devlin, Carlo Gébler & Hugo Hamilton talking about their fathers, Michael O’Loughlin and popular broadcaster Joe Duffy.Jennifer Johnston is one of the foremost Irish writers of her, or any generation. She has won the Whitbread Prize, the Evening Standard Best First Novel Award, the Yorkshire Post Award, and Best Book of the Year on two occasions. She has also been shortlisted for the Booker Prize with Shadows on our Skin. Her other novels include Truth or FictionFoolish MortalsThe Gingerbread WomanTwo Moons and Shadowstory. Rich in dialogue, Johnston’s novels deal with political and cultural tensions in Ireland and often focus on family relationships and the difficult transition from childhood to adulthood. She will read from her work and talk with Dermot Bolger about her childhood and her writings since her first book, The Captains and the Kings, appeared in 1972.

Mary Costello grew up in County Galway. Her collection of short stories, The China Factory, was nominated for the Guardian First Book Award. Her stories have been published in various anthologies and broadcast on radio. Her debut novel, Academy Street, has been shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award 2014 and the Irish Book Awards Novel of the Year 2014.

Martina Devlin is an Omagh-born author and journalist. Her novels include The House Where It Happened, a ghost story inspired by Ireland’s only mass witchcraft trial; Ship of Dreams, about the Titanic disaster; and her latest book is About Sisterland, set in a near future ruled by women where it all goes horribly wrong. Prizes include a Hennessy Literary Award and the Royal Society of Literature’s VS Pritchett Prize, and she was twice shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards. A current affairs commentator for the Irish Independent, she has been named columnist of the year by the National Newspapers of Ireland.

Joe Duffy, broadcaster, is the presenter of Ireland’s most popular daily radio show, Liveline, on RTE Radio 1. He also presents Joe Duffy’s Spirit Level on RTE television and writes a weekly column for the Irish Mail on Sunday. Born in Dublin’s Mountjoy Square and reared in Ballyfermot, his bestselling memoir Just Joe was published in 2010. His interest in researching and writing about the forgotten children killed in 1916 was sparked by an art project he undertook in Easter 2013 for the Jack and Jill Children’s Foundation. In 2014 he organised the first national ecumenical service of reclamation and remembrance for the children killed in the Easter Rising.

Carlo Gébler was born Dublin in 1954, son of the writers Edna O¹Brien and Ernest Gébler. Carlo was raised by his mother and endured difficult visits to Dublin see his father, who became an reclusive and contrary figure until he succumbed to Alzheimer’s and Carlo became his guardian. He has just published a new life of his father, entitled, The Projectionist, based on material mined from copious notes written by his father. Carlo Gebler’s many novels include The Dead Eight; inspired by a famous 1940 murder and subsequent miscarriage of justice in Tipperary.

Hugo Hamilton was born and grew up in Dublin. His many novels include Surrogate CityThe Last ShotThe Love Test and Every Single Minute. He is perhaps best known for his two internationally acclaimed childhood memoir, The Speckled People and The Sailor in the Wardrobe, which detail his difficult relationship with his Irish speaking father who banned all English words from the house and with his gentle German mother who started a new life in Ireland after the horrors of war in Europe. The French translation of The Speckled People, won the Prix Femina Etranger in 2003 and the Italian translation won the Premio Giuseppe Berto in 2004. Hugo Hamilton lives in Dublin.

Michael O’Loughlin was born in Dublin in 1958. He has been one of the most arresting voices in Irish poetry since his debut, Stalingrad, the Street Dictionary, in 1980. He lived for many years in Barcelona and Amsterdam where many of his screenplays were filmed and is the author of an acclaimed collection of stories, The Inside Story. His Selected Poems, Another Nation, was published in Ireland and the UK in 1996 and his latest book, In This Life, in which brings a new sensibility to bear on the disturbing realities of the Ireland he returned from abroad, in poems in his own voice and poems, ostensibly translated from the Latvian, written in the voice of a fictional immigrant to Ireland who acts as an outside observer of Irish life and culture.

Dermot Bolger is one of Ireland’s best known writers. This is his thirteenth year to curate and present Reader’s Day. This autumn sees the publication of his Selected Poems, That Which is Suddenly Precious. His 12th novel, Tanglewood, was acclaimed upon publication earlier in the year. His stage adaptation of Ulysses toured China this spring. He regularly writes for all of Ireland’s leading newspapers and in 2012 was named Commentator of the Year at the Irish Newspaper awards.

Brought to you as part of Red Line Book Festival 2015