Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

More than 50 authors appearing at Lennoxlove Book Festival

Sir Chris Bonington
Image caption Sir Chris Bonington will open the event with a personal appreciation of Scotland's wild places

A book festival in an East Lothian country house opens later with a talk by mountaineer Sir Chris Bonington.

More than 50 fiction and non-fiction authors will appear at the fifth Lennoxlove Book Festival, near Haddington, this weekend.

Highlights include talks by scientist Richard Dawkins, news anchor Jeremy Paxman and comedian Rory Bremner.

Novelists Maggie O'Farrell, Kate Mosse, Christopher Brookmyre and William McIlvanney are also taking part.

Non-fiction events include BBC Radio 4's James Naughtie speaking about Barack Obama, politician Lord Hurd talking about Benjamin Disraeli and a wine-tasting session with Helen McGinn, author of The Knackered Mother's Wine Club.

Come alive

Alistair Moffat, Lennoxlove Book Festival director, said: "This year, hand on heart, we can honestly say there is something for everyone to enjoy at Lennoxlove - brilliant fiction, history, politics, comedy, wine, food and even golf.

"It's a great family day-out, where books and reading truly come alive. There is nothing like it."

Sir Chris will open the event with a personal appreciation of Scotland's wild places when he gives the John Muir Lennoxlove Lecture, marking the Year of Natural Scotland 2013.

Saturday and Sunday there will be ticketed events for families, including Lauren St John, Sally Gardner and Sally Magnusson as well as free activities for children including Bookbug Rhyme and Storytime Sessions provided by East Lothian Libraries, a Where's Wally-spotting competition, and circus skills workshops in the grounds of the house.

John McMillan, spokesman for East Lothian's economic development and tourism, said: "Lennoxlove has gone from strength to strength and is now established as one of the best festivals, not just in East Lothian, but in Scotland.

"We are delighted to have been involved in establishing such a prestigious event here and I'm sure visitors will enjoy listening to some really high-profile authors in the stunning setting of Lennoxlove House."

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