‘If the ravens leave the Tower, the kingdom of Britain will fall…’
We are thrilled to welcome Christopher Skaife to Hunting Raven Books to talk about his life as Ravenmaster at the Tower of London.
Chris's official title is 'Yeoman Warder of Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress the Tower of London', and caring for the Tower's seven ravens is a central part of the distinguished position he holds.
In his critically acclaimed memoir Ravenmaster, Chris gives a wonderfully personal account of his life in service to Her Majesty the Queen and of his relationship with the portentous birds for which he cares. As he so beautiful states: "I look after the ravens – and the ravens look after us."
The event will take place in Frome, with the venue to be confirmed shortly. The £3 ticket price can be redeemed against purchase of the book on the night. Chris will be happy to sign books.
Tickets can be purchased directly via Eventbrite or by calling 01373 473111, emailing email@example.com or by popping into the Frome shop (9-10 Cheap Street, Frome, BA11 4DU)
'Blood-soaked biscuits and disembowelled pigeons in a wonderfully personal account of life with the ravens' The Guardian
Martin Dimery is a man of many talents: Director of the Frome Festival, rock-and-roll legend (Sergeant Pepper’s Only Dart Board Band; The Unravelling Wilburys), Somerset County Councillor, and published author.
This year, Martin published his first novel The Ruling Classes - a darkly comic satire that compares the fortunes of a comprehensive school and its independent counterpart in the fictional town of Storton, as both battle for supremacy - and funds - in attempting to build a new theatre.
‘Write what you know’ is a common and valuable mantra in the world of novel-writing, and Martin brings his years of teaching in both the state and private sectors, his experience of small town politics, and his life in the arts to bear in his wryly observed piece of fiction.
The event will be held in the Naval Room at the Archangel Hotel and Restaurant. Tickets cost £3 and can be redeemed against purchase of the book on the night. To book your place call 01373 473111, email firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into the shop.
To celebrate the launch of her latest book, 'Meditation Mind' acclaimed British artist Emily Maguire will present an evening of poetry and acoustic songs at Hunting Raven Books.
Singer, songwriter, composer, poet, multi-instrumentalist and mental health advocate, Emily's five albums and two books have established her as a talent to be reckoned with.
With a remarkable, inspiring story to tell, she has been featured many times on BBC Radio 2 and Radio 4 - her thought-provoking lyrics, supremely expressive vocals and spellbinding live performances winning her fans across the globe.
Tickets can be purchased or reserved in the shop, by calling 01373 473111, emailing email@example.com or directly online by visiting https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/emily-maguire-meditation-mind-tickets-49787289122
'Exquisite' UNCUT *** 'A class act' The Mirror *** 'Music for the Soul' Maverick Magazine
Jen Arnall-Culliford, co-founder of Arnall-Culliford Knitwear Ltd, is a knitwear technical editor, knitting tutor, and all round woolly enthusiast.
In 2017, Arnall-Culliford Knitwear Ltd published its first knitting book, A Year of Techniques, which was swiftly followed by Something New to Learn About Cables and Something New to Learn About Lace.
The publishing projects were a new string to Jen’s (highly creative) bow, and learning how to pull together a beautifully designed and professionally put-together book was a learning curve.
Come and join Jen, as she talks about the books, her creative life in knitting, and her best tips for other creatives planning to bring their own artistic passion into print.
The event is free but booking is advised as space is limited. You can reserve your place by calling 01373 473111, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by popping into the shop.
Sidmouth Science Festival 2018
As a connoisseur of comedy, Robin Ince has spent decades mining our eccentricities to create gags - and watching other strange individuals do the same. And for years on The Infinite Monkey Cage with Brian Cox he has sought - sometimes in vain - to understand the world around us. In this book, he unites these pursuits to tackle some of the biggest questions that intrigue us all.
Why do we make the choices we do in life? Where does anxiety come from? Why are we like we are? Do our parents f*&k us up? Informed by interviews with a bevy of A-list comedians from Jo Brand and Tim Minchin to Ricky Gervais - as well as with neuroscientists, psychologists and doctors - this is a hilarious and often profound primer to the mind.
Tickets £3 (redeemable agains a book purchase) from:
An evening with author, historian and former leader of the Liberal Democrats, Paddy Ashdown.
In his latest book NEIN!: Standing up to Hitler 1935-1944 Paddy Ashdown tells, for the first time, the story of those at the very top of Hitler’s Germany who tried to prevent the Second World War and deny Hitler victory. Based on newly released files, the repeated attempts of the plotters to warn the Allies about Hitler’s plans are revealed.
Paddy Ashdown served as a Royal Marine and intelligence officer for the UK security services before becoming leader of the Liberal Democrats for over ten years.
We expect demand for this event to be high, so booking in advance is recommended. Tickets are £5 (redeemable against purchase of the book) and can be obtained from Hunting Raven Books or reserved by contacting email@example.com / 01373 473111
Sidmouth Science Festival 2018
Do you want to be happy? Well, of course you do. But why? What does happiness actually mean? Where does it come from? And can you buy it?
In The Happy Brain, neuroscientist and stand up comedian Dean Burnett delves deep into the inner workings of our minds to answer these fundamental questions - and many more besides. From whether happiness really begins at home [spoiler alert: yes - sort of] to what love, sex, money and success actually do to our brains, Burnett offers a uniquely entertaining insight into what it means to be human.
Tickets £3 (redeemable against a book purchase) from
Join us as local favourites Mick Davis and David Lassman unveil deeds most foul and murders most suspicious - all committed in and around Frome.
The authors have form; not for murder, but for relating, in brilliant detail, the historical happenings of our little town.
The launch of The Awful Killing of Sarah Watts packed out our little shop, and we hope to give David and Mick a warm reception once again as they launch Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in & around Frome.
This event is free but booking is advised to avoid disappointment. Places can be reserved by calling 01373 473111, emailing us on firstname.lastname@example.org or by popping into our shop on Cheap Street, Frome.
Renowned marine biologist, Trevor Day joins us to tell the big story of a little fish…
Trevor Day – fish-watcher, marine biologist and author of over 40 books – has spent nearly a decade researching his latest book, Sardine.
The ‘most challenging book’ of Day’s career, Sardine is written for a general audience and is wide-ranging - taking in poetry, literature, history and art as well as gastronomy, biology and economics. A strong theme running throughout the book is our relationship with nature – told through the story of this familiar fish.
In researching the book, Day travelled to South Africa, Portugal, California and Mexico.
This is a free event, but booking is advised to avoid disappointment. Places can be reserved by calling 01373 473111, emailing us on email@example.com or by popping into the shop at 9-10 Cheap Street, Frome. Books will be available on the night and Trevor will happily sign copies.
From being transported by the sound of 'True Love' by Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly on the radio, as a small child living in condemned housing in ungentrified West London in the late 1950s, to going out to work as a postman humming 'Watching the Detectives' by Elvis Costello in 1977, Alan Johnson's life has always had a musical soundtrack. In fact music hasn't just accompanied his life, it's been an integral part of it.
In the bestselling and award-winning tradition of This Boy, In My Life vividly transports us to a world that is no longer with us - a world of Dansettes and jukeboxes, of heartfelt love songs and heart-broken ballads, of smoky coffee shops and dingy dance halls. From Bob Dylan to David Bowie, from Lonnie Donnegan to Bruce Springsteen, all of Alan's favourites are here. As are, of course, his beloved Beatles, whom he has worshipped with undying admiration since 1963.
But this isn't just a book about music. In My Life adds a fourth dimension to the story of Alan Johnson the man.
We are delighted to bring Alan to Dissenter of Sidmouth, the chapel with a rich history of over three centuries of discussion, dissent and democracy.
Standard tickets £5
Ticket with signed book £16.99
Join us as Costa Prize-winning novelist Andrew Miller launches his latest novel Now We Shall Be Entirely Free. The event, which takes place at the Archangel Hotel & Restaurant, will conclude with a book signing by the author.
Tickets are £18.99 which covers entry and a copy of the book or £3 entry only (redeemable against purchases of the book on the night).
Tickets can be purchased directly online through our Eventbrite page, in person at Winstone's Hunting Raven Books, 9 Cheap Street, Frome, or by phone (01373 473111) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We are proud to be hosting Crysse for a lively and informal evening, as she talks to us about her new book Frome Unzipped. The book lays out - with true quirk and charm - the history of our ubiquitous town characters. From 'Prehistory' right through to 'Post Punk' Frome Unzipped is a brilliant distillation of what it is to be Frome and how we got here.
After her talk, Crysse will happy to sign books (both those purchased on the night or prior to the event).
Entry is free, but you can reserve your place on the guest list by calling 01373 473111, emailing email@example.com or popping into the shop.
Jeremy has been presenting a BBC Radio 2 show since 2003 that attracts more than seven million listeners. In that time he calculates he has taken more than 25,000 calls on topical subjects - big issues and small ones: on life, love, lollipop ladies and poisonous plants. But what have the callers told him?
In a book punctuated by vivid anecdotes and laugh-out-loud moments, Jeremy explains what it's like to hit a button and hear - totally unvarnished and unspun - the voices of so-called ordinary people. And why they are not so ordinary after all.
Tickets £13 (to include a glass of wine). From Kennaway House 01395 515551.
The Life of Stuff : A memoir about the mess we leave behind
Susannah will be with us talking about her new book which explores loss, grief and hoarding, through the story of her own relationship with her mother, and her experiences clearing up her mother's crammed and dilapidated house after she died.
A deeply personal memoir about mourning and the shoring up of possessions against the losses and griefs of life, which also raises universal questions about what makes us the people we are. What do our possessions say about us? Why do we project such meaning onto them? And what painful circumstances turn someone who loves their home and the stuff it contains into an incurable hoarder who ends their days in squalor?
This is a free event but space is limited so please book in shop, on the phone, or via email:
House of Gold
Natasha Solomons will be with us at Hunting Raven talking about her new book House of Gold
A Novel in Five Objects: From Cartier’s Belle Epoque Diamond Butterfly to the telegram that brought America into the First World War, New York Times bestselling author Natasha Solomons will give an illustrated talk on how she spins historical research into immersive fiction.
House of Gold, began with the discovery of a portrait of her family in the Frankfurt ghetto. Find out how that inspired a story of money, power and a desperate marriage.
Thise is a free event but space is limited so please book in shop, on the phone, or via email:
High on a Cornish cliff sits a vast uninhabited mansion. Uninhabited except for Blake, a young woman of dubious background, secretive and alone, currently acting as housesitter.
The house has a panic room. Cunningly concealed, steel lined, impregnable – and apparently closed from within. Even Blake doesn’t know it’s there. She’s too busy being on the run from life, from a story she thinks she’s escaped.
This contemporary suspense novel is Robert Goddard at his nerve-shredding best.
A sliver of a mystery kicks off a juggernaut of a thriller. Layers of secrets, half truths and lies.
Tickets £13 (including glass of wine) from Kennaway House 01395 515511
'The world's greatest storyteller' Guardian
‘Is this his best yet?...Full of sinister menace and propulsive pace with twisty plotting’ Lee Child
Music in the West Country with Stephen Banfield
How does the machinery of government respond when a King steps out of line?
In this fascinating behind-the-scenes account of the royal abdication crisis of 1936, Adrian Phillips reveals the previously untold story of the hidden political machinations and insidious battles in Westminster and Whitehall that settled the fate of the King and Mrs Simpson.
Tickets £13 (including glass of wine) from Kennaway House 03195 515511
Tyler Keevil, author of No Good Brother will be at Hunting Raven Books presenting dramatised readings with musical accompaniment from his brother!
This is a free event, call in or phone us on 01373 473111 to book your place!
No Good Brother:
Tim Harding has spent the fishing season in Canada working as a deckhand, making an honest living. When his hot-headed younger brother tracks him down at the shipyards in Vancouver, Tim senses trouble.
Quick-witted and beautifully observed, No Good Brother is an exquisite portrait of brotherly love and loyalty, examining the loss of innocence and the ties that bind us.
Join award-winning author and illustrator Rob Biddulph for a roarsome Dinosaur Juniors event. Hear Rob talk about how he became a children’s author and illustrator, listen to him read from his latest book ‘Dinosaur Juniors: Happy Hatchday’ and take part in creating some dinosaurs of your own! After the event you will have the chance to purchase a copy of Dinosaur Juniors: Happy Hatchday and get it signed by Rob. For ages 3+.
Come and meet the authors of The Awful Killing of Sarah Watts Mick Davis and David Lassman on Tuesday the 3rd of April at Hunting Raven Books
A true-life Victorian murder whodunnit based in Frome with more twists than a crime thriller and a cast of characters fiction writers would be pressed to equal...
Doors open 6.30pm for a 7pm start. There will be refreshments. Please call 01373 473111 to book a place for this free event.