Torre Abbey Historic House and Gardens is looking forward to hosting one of the most significant literary events of the year on 14 September.

Best-selling author Sophie Hannah will appear at the house with her brand-new Hercule Poirot novel, The Monogram Murders alongside HarperCollins’ David Brawn and Agatha Christie’s grandson, Mathew Prichard. Fans will be agog!

This is the first time an author has been approved to write an Agatha Christie continuation novel and The Monogram Murders, which is published on the 9th September marks Poirot’s first literary outing since 1975.

Torbay's Deputy Mayor, David Thomas, said: “It is wonderful to see Torre Abbey as the hub of the Agatha Christie festival this year.

“The festival, which runs from 14-21 September, has been re-launched this year as a major, new literary festival. It’s a unique blend of crime-writing and vintage programming, hosting some of today’s top authors.

“It is very fitting that this wonderful historic Torbay building plays such a significant role in celebrating the works and life of such as international crime legend who was born here.”

There’s a line-up bursting with contemporary crime authors such as Kate Summerscale, author of The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, and Ann Cleeves who penned the Vera Stanhope novels.

The programme also includes an evening with Ben Stephenson, Head of Drama Commissioning at the BBC, who will speak about adapting Christie for television in the forthcoming Partners in Crime and And Then There Were None dramas, planned for late 2015.

Members of the Agatha Christie Theatre Company will showcase the brilliant work of the ‘Queen of Crime’ throughout the week with the performance of some of her most popular plays, including Black Coffee, and readings of her short stories.

Beautiful Torre Abbey on Torquay seafront, which dates back to the 12th Century, is the stunning location for the festival hub with its Book Tent sponsored by HarperCollins and stocked by Waterstones. There will also be author signings, open mic sessions and Poirot appearances.

In addition, the whole English Riviera will be buzzing with Agatha Christie fans attending the popular fringe events around the Bay. The Agatha Christie-themed events include light-hearted and colourful murder mysteries and garden parties.

Budding young authors, detectives, and actors will also be welcomed to the festival, with a young writers event, children’s detective trail and theatre workshop all taking place at Torre Abbey throughout the week.

The full festival programme can be viewed at the new festival website, where tickets are also now on sale.


Information for Editors:

  • Photos available on request
  • The Agatha Christie Festival has secured Arts Council England funding for the next two years to support its transformation into a major international literary festival and independent charity.
  • The Monogram Murders by Sophie Hannah will be published in the UK on 9 September 2014 by HarperCollins Publishers

For further information please contact:
Anita Newcombe
Anita Newcombe Media & PR
PR Co-ordinator for the English Riviera Tourism Company

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