Murderous Medway Panel 2 – Politically Thrilling

Henry Hemming, KH Irvine and Gareth Rubin capture the political zeitgeist of the last three years and how it’s informed their work. Chaired by Dr. Kate Bradley.

Henry Hemming is the author of six works of non-fiction, including most recently the Sunday Times bestseller M, a biography of the MI5 spymaster Maxwell Knight.

His latest novel, Our Man in New York is gripping story of a propaganda campaign like no other: the covert British operation to manipulate American public opinion and bring the US into the Second World War.

When William Stephenson arrived in the United States towards the end of June 1940 with instructions from the head of MI6 to ‘organise’ American public opinion, Britain was on the verge of defeat. Surveys showed that just 14% of the US population wanted to go to war against Nazi Germany. But soon that began to change…

Those campaigning against America’s entry into the war, such as legendary aviator Charles Lindbergh, talked of a British-led plot to drag the US into the conflict. They feared that the British were somehow flooding the American media with ‘fake news’, infiltrating pressure groups, rigging opinion polls and meddling in US politics.

These claims were shocking and wild: they were also true.

That truth is revealed by Henry Hemming, using hitherto private and classified documents, including the diaries of his own grandparents, who were briefly part of Stephenson’s extraordinary influence campaign that was later described in the Washington Post as ‘arguably the most effective in history’. Stephenson – who saved the life of Hemming’s father – was a flawed maverick, full of contradictions, but one whose work changed the course of the war, and whose story can now be told in full.

“OUR MAN IN NEW YORK is gripping and intoxicating, it unfolds like the best screenplay.” – NICHOLAS SHAKESPEARE

Find Henry at: www.henryhemming.com

 

K.H. Irvine grew up in Scotland and now lives near London. An experienced business leader for over two decades, K.H. Irvine’s work has taken her to board rooms, universities and governments all over the world and has included personal access to the UK’s Special Forces.

A KILLING SIN is K.H. Irvine’s first book and tackles a number of challenging themes, asking when tolerance becomes intolerable and where security measures become racial profiling. A gripping page-turner with huge commercial appeal and immediate resonance in today’s climate, the book raises questions we may not want to answer and is sure to trigger debate.

Book two is set a few years later as Britain moves to civil unrest and the rise of the far right, where the personal and political become intertwined.

Set in London in the very near future, A Killing Sin centres around three dynamic, flawed women who forged a life-long friendship at university. Through their different career paths, their lives become entwined with that of a young woman, a committed jihadist, who embarks on a horrific terrorist plot hitting right at the heart of Government.

 

Gareth Rubin spent two decades avoiding libel actions as a social affairs journalist before writing his first novel, Liberation Square. His follow-up, published in 2020, is about British agents in France on the eve of D-Day.

Described as ‘a gripping story, with heart’ by the Daily Telegraph, ‘tightly plotted, tense and set in a chillingly plausible world’ by the Sunday Mirror, and ‘a gripping and well-imagined yarn’ by The Sun​, Liberation Square is a murder mystery set in Soviet-occupied London.

It’s 1952 and Soviet troops control British streets after winning the Second World War. After the disastrous failure of D-Day, Britain is occupied by Nazi Germany, and only rescued by Russian soldiers arriving from the east and Americans from the west. The two superpowers divide the nation between them, a wall running through London like a scar.

On the Soviet side of the wall, Jane Cawson calls into her husband’s medical practice, hoping to surprise him. But instead she detects the perfume worn by his former wife, Lorelei, star of propaganda films for the new Marxist regime. Jane rushes to confront them, but soon finds herself caught up in the glamorous actress’s death. Her husband Nick is arrested for murder. Desperate to clear his name, Jane must risk the attention of the brutal secret police as she follows a trail of corruption right to the highest levels of the state. And she might find she never really knew her husband at all.

Fun fact: Gareth also jointly holds a Guinness World Record as a member of the world’s biggest coconut orchestra!

Find him at www.garethrubin.com

Tickets for this panel (£7) and/or an All Day Pass (£30) can be found here.

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May Write Then Socialise

wts may

Sorry for the late notice, but it’s next Saturday! I was toying with the weekend after, but that’s Dickens weekend and it’ll be packed.

So, same place but slightly different time of 1-4pm (though you’re welcome in the library from 10am). I (Jaye) might be a bit late but you know the drill if I am. See you there!

April Write Then Socialise

WTS April

April’s Write Then Socialise will take place during our annual Terry Pratchett celebration, The Turtle Moves, from 10am-1pm in Rochester Community Hub cafe.

The workshops will be in Room 11 at the Rochester hub, and parents who wish to write while their children are crafting are welcome in there instead. The Juvenile Crafters’ Guild runs from 10.30am-12.30pm

We’re also delighted that writer Kerry Hancock is joining us in Room 11 between 11am-12pm. Born and raised in Medway, her life long dream of becoming an author has been realised with the release of her first book ‘The Task’ due this year. A fantasy adventure for young and old, it’s the first in a trilogy.

Kerry will share her story of how she was picked up by her publisher and do a Q&A on the publishing process.

A World Building Workshop using examples from the Discworld will follow between 1.30-3.30pm. See here for details.

Dyslexia House Writing Competition

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Do you have a story to tell but find it hard to get it down on paper?  

If it’s a struggle, why not contact Dyslexia House for help?  They can help get your words into print. So get in touch right now for writing help!

Or do you prefer to express yourself with images rather than words?  Then don’t hesitate…get sketching, drawing and painting right now!

This is the first time that Dyslexia House Association has combined forces with Medway Libraries, Medway Mermaids and Nucleus Arts to encourage writing and artwork.

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The Dickens Festival

Dickens 2016

Join us at Rochester Children’s Library during the Dickens Festival for Poetrees inspired by the great man’s works. Or choose your Dickens Name and write your very own great work, starring the character you would have been!

It’s all free and there’s no need to book, but children must be accompanied by an adult.

Saturday, June 10 from 10.30am-1pm.

With many thanks to the City of Rochester Society for their grant support again this year, which enables the event to take place.