Preview: Manchester Literature Festival

We're media partner to MLF and these are some of the coming week's highlights

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Ben Okri, Anne Enright and Eimar McBride are three glittering names among the host of literary talent coming up in the next week of the Manchester Literature Festival.

Nigerian poet and novelist Okri – who won the Man Booker Prize in 1991 for The Famished Road – will be delivering the first MLF and Royal Literary Fund lecture on 16 October at the Whitworth Art Gallery.

He will talk about the strange art of storytelling before a discussion with host and broadcaster Erica Wagner.

Another Booker winner – for The Gathering, in 2007 – Enright (pictured) will be reading and discussing her work on 17 October at Hallé St Peters.

Later in the week, fellow Irish novelist McBride will be in conversation with John McCauliffe of Manchester University’s Centre for New Writing.

Described by Enright as “that old-fashioned thing, a genius”, McBride will talk about her prize-winning debut A Girl is a Half-formed Thing and her new novel The Lesser Bohemians at the event on 20 October at the Martin Harris Centre, Manchester University.

Big Issue North is once again proud to be media partner to MLF, which runs until 23 October.

This weekend highlights South Asian writers, with Kamila Shamsie – described by Salman Rushdie as “a writer of immense ambition and strength” – giving the seventh Castlefield Manchester Sermon on 14 October.

Members of the Whole Kahani, a collective of British fiction writers of South Asian origin, will read from their anthology Love Across a Broken Map at the Whitworth Art Gallery on 16 October.

Other highlights over the next week include Writing Karachi on 16 October, in which Mohammed Hanif and Kamila Shamsie discuss how the Pakistani city has shaped their writing, and, the day after, Hwang Jung-eun, the young Korean novelist, talking about her novel One Hundred Shadows.

Poet Sarah Howe, on 22 October at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, presents selections from her acclaimed debut collection, which explores the duality of her Anglo-Chinese heritage.

You can find information about these events and more at

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