Straight up fun with Jim Smith

What’s the funniest book you’ve ever read? Probably Adrian Mole, I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much while reading a book as I did while reading that book, which I read while laughing a lot - more than any other book I’ve ever read, in fact.
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There’s more than meets the eye with Steven Butler

Steven Butler, author of 'The Nothing to See Here Hotel' series, weirdly and wonderfully illustrated by Steven Lenton, is coming to Barnes this year with his ragtag band of monsters in tow. Shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, Steven is treating us to an afternoon of monstrously good fun that is not to be missed. Here he tells us about his love of all things deep sea, his fantasy pet monster and the fourth book in the series -- result!
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Kicking things off with Tom Palmer…

When it comes to all things football, one name comes to mind… Tom Palmer. From the Football Academy series to The Squad Series to Armistice Runner, Tom brings his love of football and reading back to Barnes Festival 2019 and we couldn’t be more excited!
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Inside Jeremy Strong’s naturally funny mind

From the The-Hundred-Mile-An-Hour Dog to the My Brother’s Famous Bottom series, funny man Jeremy Strong has written over a hundred books! He will be bringing some of his first class hilarity to Barnes Festival 2019 and introducing his latest book Armadillo & Hare. And this is no ordinary hare of course. For starters, this one plays the tuba... We can’t wait to hear more!
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Sophy Henn on her love of animals

There might not be anyone else on the planet who loves animals as much as Sophy Henn. Sophy is a friend to all things furry and she’s bringing some of that love to this year’s festival: thank you Sophy! A first class picture book maker; she’s the heart behind the highly acclaimed ‘Where Bear?’ and the ‘Pom Pom’ series. If there’s anything more she enjoys than being around animals, it’s illustrating them… unless it’s horses and unicorns. Join us in welcoming Sophy at the festival for non-stop animal fun and her latest books ‘Lifesize’ and ‘Lifesize Dinosaurs’. You’re guaranteed to have a dino-mite time.
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A quick catch up with Candy Gourlay…

Candy Gourlay, the author of Bone Talk and Is it a Mermaid?, joins us for this year’s festival, hoorah! Candy, originally from the Philippines, is a dab hand at writing for different cultures and inviting the reader on a fascinating journey that grips and delights you. Candy is the BookTrust’s writer in residence and she’s coming to Barnes to share her experiences and reveal all about the mysterious dugong, a creature who might just be a mermaid – so it’s definitely not to be missed.
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Christopher Lloyd on Elton John, R2D2 and the difference between man and machine…

From dinosaurs to robots to your standard 30 cm ruler, the man behind the best-selling Absolutely Everything Christopher Lloyd is one of many who will be delighting us at this year’s festival. Three cheers for Chris! Christopher Lloyd is the resident expert on, well, everything. His books include The What on Earth Series and The Story of the World in 100 Species. Lloyd is coming to Barnes to delight and fascinate you about the worlds 13 billion year history, in just 50 minutes. Wow! Bring nothing but your enthusiasm and quizzical questions because if anyone can give you the answers, it’s Chris!
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Travel back in time with Caroline Lawrence

Who wouldn’t want to discover the untold story of how the remains of a 14-year-old girl ended up buried with an ivory knife in Roman London? Caroline Lawrence, an author who needs little introduction after her widely successful award winning The Roman Mysteries, is here to catapult you back in time with her latest book The Time Travel Diaries. With the help of her new protagonist, Alex Papas—a schoolboy who has been roped into travelling back to 260 AD by an eccentric millionaire — Lawrence is doing what she does best, taking you on an exciting journey through Roman London, leaving just enough time for us to meet her marvelously talented self at the festival. Result!
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How to Create a Picture Book with Benji Davies

How does an idea occur? And how can you get inspired to get an idea for a story? Benji Davies, an illustrator, author and animation director, gives us a quick rundown of his 4 top tips for creating a picture book and where he normally looks for inspiration for a story.
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Ben Faulks in Barnes

Who were you as a child? The clumsy one? The sporty one? Did you want to grow up to be the same as the rest of the children in your class or something completely different? Kids today might think it’s challenging to be different to their peers and feel like they all have to be the same to be ‘cool’, but could it be cooler to be different? Today Ben Faulks, the author of Watch Out for Muddy Puddles with Ben Cort, and What Makes Me a Me, appears with an important message highlighting our differences as individuals and helping children begin to see how we are all unique. 
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