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Book Lovers, Beware! Serious Temptation at the Town of Books Festival

toto sniffs out some great books, including one with a picture of a cat, for The Town of Books festival

Toto ‘nose’ to follow the yellow book road to Graiguenamanagh Town Of Books festival

September in Ireland is usually gorgeous; mild, sunny, and perfect for festivals. If you love books, this is a festival you will want to attend– but you may need extra hands to bring home your book booty. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

During the Town of Books Festival the medieval riverside town of Graiguenamanagh, Kilkenny will be filled with over 20 booksellers on the 14th – 15th September 2013! It’ll be the best place in Ireland to pick up a bargain in new, 2nd hand, antiquarian,children’s and specialist books.

On the 13th-15th, the Town Of Books Festival will feature many events: readings & workshops for all ages, theatre, music, & a host of a tempting food, crafts and interesting activities at the traditional Michaelmas fair. 

Graiguenamanagh is an outdoor activity headquarters for the Barrow Valley, and is constantly alive with hillwalkers, cyclists, canoeists, fishing and boating enthusiasts. Plus, there’s swimming & diving in summer. Come visit!

I should tell you that I do help out with this festival from time to time & but I don’t think I’m too biased. I loved & attended it several years it before I ever did anything with the festival. I’ve shelves full of quirky and fascinating vintage travel books to prove it! 🙂


YAY! All events are FREE unless noted otherwise 🙂


Friday, 13 September

**please note, booksellers will not be selling on this day**


Louise Philips, Award winning crime writer of bestseller 
Red Ribbons
Louise will read from her 2nd chilling book, A Doll’s House
Graiguenamanagh Library, 8pm



Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm


Saturday, 14 September

Booksellers open 10am to 6pm

Library open from 10-1.30

Graiguenamanagh Community Garden open day: 

 Bring the kids and come see the garden, & perhaps chat with us about the plants! 10–5


Children’s Workshop on Imagination & Story

  Helena Duggan, graphic designer & children’s author

Bring colouring pencils if you have some. (Also provided.)

Ages 9+,  The Abbey Hall, 11am

Paint a Mural! 

Fun for all ages! At the basketball court, Abbey Hall 12-2pm


Paul Howard, AKA Ross O’Carroll-Kelly 
Paul Howard is an, author and comedy writer, and the creator of the cult character Ross O’Carroll-Kelly. He will read from his newest book Downturn Abbey
In Graiguenamanagh Library, 2pm

Children’s Book Reading & Workshop

Paula Leyden, award winning author of The Butterfly Heart, and The Sleeping Baobab Tree

For ages 9+, 2pm, The Abbey Hall

Writing Workshop for Older Children

Author Edward Crane gives writing tips, & talks about The Havishams, his children’s fantasy series. Ages 10+, The Abbey Hall, 4pm



Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm


There will be a fantastic festival atmosphere, with music throughout the streets during the day


Sunday 15 September

Booksellers open 10am to 6pm

Michaelmas Fair

The traditional Michaelmas fair of Tinnahinch & Graiguenamanagh has a long history. In a bye-gone era the area was a hub of activity when the fair came to town and rural & urban dwellers met and exchanged produce, services, cultural ideas and local stories. There will be farm animal displays, activities for children, music, history, a duck race, and more!  €5 entry


Artisan Food & Craft Market

Local producers and makers, including celebrity chef & author Edward Hayden, will tempt you with their wares at the Michaelmas Fair.

Local History Tour

A fascinating look at the rich history & stories of Graiguenamanagh and environs. A huge hit last year, don’t miss out! Given by the local History Society this tour starts at 2.30pm from medieval Duiske Abbey.


  Written by Shameless and Skins writer Jack Thorne.

 A one-woman theatre show from Spark Productions (adult language/ themes)

Duiske Inn,  €8. Doors 7.30, start 8pm

Rowing a boat on a river of yellow books!

By land or by water, follow the yellow book road to Graiguenamanagh Town of Books festival

The Town of Books website is here:

You can follow them on Twitter @townofbooksfest

And Like them on Facebook: Irelands Town Of Books Festival

Click here for more posts on Graiguenamanagh 


See you in Graiguenamanagh for the Town Of Books Festival, 13-15 September, 2013. You won’t need very much money, but you will need loads of bookshelf space!

 Here’s Graiguenamanagh on the map, below. 

View Larger Map

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