Next May may seem like a long way away, but preparations for CRIMEFEST 2010 are well under way. Colin Dexter, Gyles Brandreth, M. C. Beaton and Ariana Franklin have already been announced as "featured authors" but some new names have just signed up: Michael Stanley, author(s) of the Inspector Kubu series; Jonathan Hayes, born in Bristol, and now a veteran forensic pathologist in the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Manhattan by day and crime writer (amongst many other things) by night; Dan Waddell (Creasey Dagger nominee); and Laura Wilson (Historical Dagger nominee). Lots of other participants have signed up already: a full list is available here, and you can register for the festival here (special registration rates available until 15 October; special hotel rates available until April 2010).
Crimefest have also announced the next online reading group title, "an excellent debut crime novel that has just been nominated for a Gold Dagger: M.R. Hall's The Coroner. The novel is set in Bristol and the Wye Valley, and not only does it catch the atmosphere of CRIMEFEST 's home base, it is a great psychological suspense novel as well. To receive a copy, the first twenty people to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with 'Coroner' in the subject line and their postal and email address in the body of the message will receive a free copy of the book. The deadline is October 30. Have you already read the book and would like to join the discussion? Then please sign up at ONLINE READING GROUPS." A new book is discussed every month, and several copies of each month's selection are given away free.
You can also enter a competition to win a signed first edition of Fever of the Bone, the latest in Val McDermid's chilling Tony Hill series. To enter the draw for the free signed first edition, send an email with 'Bone' in the subject line, and your name, postal and email addresses in the body of the message to email@example.com. The deadline to enter is October 30.