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Cheltenham Literature Festival

As part of their Critical Research Project, Year 11 students attended an event at Cheltenham Literature Festival that discussed the possible outcome of next year's general election. Hosted by Times Radio, Which Election Year is it? was an opportunity for students to listen to conversations about politics in a way that they haven't done in school. Students were interested and challenged by what they heard and possibly began to form political opinions and allegiances.

On Thursday 12th October, a group of seven Year 7 students went to the Cheltenham Literature Festival. The students observed two author events. Firstly, they attended a talk by Carnegie medal-winning author Tanya Landman about gothic traditions, with tips and tools for creating their own gothic stories. They then watched a talk by Julian Sedgwick (author of Tsunami Girl) and his illustrator Chie Kutsuwada, with a live manga art demonstration included.

Tanya spoke a little about Frankenstein and other gothic greats. This book was written when Mary Shelley was 19. Tanya Landman has subsequently rewritten some of the gothic books to include Frankenstein. She removed the long descriptions and adapted the book to make it more accessible to readers under the Barrington Stoke umbrella.

After Tanya Landman’s talk, the students experienced a joint presentation from Julian Sedgwick and his illustrator, Chie Kutsuwada, where they introduced their new collaboration, 100 Tales from the Tokyo Ghost Café. The students learnt a little about Japanese culture and ghost stories. Although the latest book hasn’t yet been published, we were lucky enough to each receive a book sample. Look out for the book, which is expected to be published in November 2023!