Brighton Magazine

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Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Tuesday 21 February 2017

Thatcher's Fractured Britain Fuels Title Chosen For Brighton's City Reads 2017

City Reads returns with a stunning debut novel, from a British Asian writer, that is both relevant and important. The Handsworth Times is a book for our times - and should be read by everyone who believes in society.

It is 1981, factories are closing, unemployment is high, the NF are marching and the neglected inner cities are ablaze as riots breakout across Thatcher's fractured Britain

The Agarwal family are facing their own personal tragedy, but their pain is eased through humour, friendship and community.

This novel's remarkable authenticity and triumphant spirit proves that there is such a thing as society, and given what is happening in this post Brexit era, we need it now, more than ever.

The book's author, Brighton based author Sharon Duggal, says: 

"It is quite a special thing to know that people from all walks of life across the city where I live and work will be coming together to read my book, just as I have done with many previous City Reads selections. 

"The Handsworth Times is ultimately a book about the hope we find in other people and it will be such a pleasure to have the opportunity to get out there and share the story with so many different people across this city via the inspired City Reads programme of events." 

Kate Tempest the Guest Director of Brighton Festival 2017 has spoken about her passion for the arts and its power to bring communities together:

And in these times, with the fear spreading everywhere and the divisions between us deepening daily, we desperately need to remember that we are all part of the same thing. 

The Handsworth Times reminds us, that we are all part of the same thing, and there is a comfort in putting aside difference and joining together in solidarity.

Andrew Comben, Chief Executive Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival says: 

"That Sharon Duggal's powerful debut explores the importance of empathy and community is particularly fitting as a choice for City Reads which encourages readers to come together with the common purpose of reading and discussing their love of reading together. 

"And with Kate Tempest at the helm as Guest Director this year, it is a theme which is central to her vision for the Festival as a whole."

City Reads launches across Brighton & Hove on 2nd March 2017. - Sharon Duggal - in conversation at Brighton Festival on 14th May 2017.. See cityreads.co.uk  for more info.

by: Mike Cobley




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Kate Tempest by Eddie Otchere

At a political and social moment that feels particularly precarious, Kate Tempest's Brighton Festival programme (6-28 May 2017) celebrates what she calls the Everyday Epic. 

The Unthanks release what has been their most difficult album to make so far, and yet they feel is also their possibly their best to date, thanks to not one but two Drakes, neither of whom are Nick…! 

The Stranglers are the new Christmas. Making their annual drop down Brighton's cultural chimney and having a capacity crowd of believers marvel as their fourth incarnation keeps true to the spirit and obtuse time signatures of the original four-piece.

When broadcasting legend Danny Baker takes to the stage at Theatre Royal Brightonn ext month, no-one, including Danny himself, will know where proceedings are heading.

Sensing the shadows cast by tyrannical forces growing ever greater by the day - The Undercover Hippy is back and on a mission to combat the sinister powers-that-be with his cunning blend of humour, optimism and hard-hitting political commentary.

Byline Festival launches at Pippingford Park, East Sussex, this summer, offering festivalgoers a unique opportunity to recapture the spirit of festivals when they had a sense of purpose. It is for everyone who doesn't want to take Trump, fake news or alternative truth lying down.

After instantly selling out their UK tour within a matter of minutes, electro pioneers Kraftwerk have added a date at the Brighton Centre, in June 2017.
mage (c) Morgan Sinclair

Brighton's Tall Ships will soon unleash new single Petrichor, taken from their forthcoming album Impressions.

Brighton's first-ever 38 Degrees Live event is set to include lively, upbeat discussions aboutlocal politics and will be a chance to hear about inspiring goings on, people, issues and opportunities in the area. 

Official creators of the genre 'Rockgrass', former ACDC tribute band, Hayseed Dixie are back in Brighton next month ahead of the realease of their new album, Free Your Mind And Your Grass Will Follow. 

The Crumpetty Tree Café and Deli in Hove has organised a Mother's Day special lunch donation menu on Sunday 26th March in support of Brighton & Hove Impetus, the award-winning local charity which helps vulnerable people who are lonely or isolated because of disability, poor mental or physical health or age.

“1895: London Society takes its problems to Sherlock Holmes.  Everyone else goes to Arrowood.”  That's the intriguing concept of the debut novel Arrowood, written by Brighton-based Anglia Ruskin University academic Dr Mick Finlay.

He's well-known for playing characters on TV that are bang up-to-date – Jonatton Yeah? (yes, that is the right spelling!) in the cult Channel 4 sitcom, Nathan Barley; the ‘is he gay? Is he straight?’  Marcus Dent in ITV's Coronation Street and, most recently, one half of a same sex parenting partnership in the brilliant ITV crime drama, Unforgotten. 

She's the girl with the big smile, the fresh-faced Nonnatus House nun who couldn'tconceal her true feelings if she tried. 

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