Our 2024 Authors

This year’s Marlborough Book Festival features 23 sessions with 17 wonderful authors speaking at the Blenheim’s ASB Theatre Marlborough, Marlborough Library at Te Kahu o Waipuna & Small Town Winery. 

It's going to be a fabulous weekend of inspiring, informative and entertaining conversations. You don't need to be a book reader to love a book festival.

We look forward to seeing you there!

- author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Opening Night - Stories Told Live

The whakatauki/proverb Ka Mua, Ka Muri encourages one to look to the past to inform the future. As we mark our 10th year of celebrating writers and their readers, join us to hear a selection of guest authors share stories, true, imagined, or a mixture of both. Read more

Anna Smaill - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Anna Smaill

Anna Smaill is a poet, novelist, and a former violinist. She is the author of Bird Life, A Novel (2023), which was longlisted for the Ockham Award this year, The Chimes (2015), which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, and the poetry collection The Violinist in Spring (2005). Read more

Bex Bell - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Bex Bell

Bex Bell is a speaker, personal trainer and coach who runs Remix Coaching and Consulting in Blenheim. Dr Bex has a PhD in criminal psychology and an endless fascination with how to optimise human potential. Read more

Chris Tse is an author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Chris Tse

Chris Tse is the New Zealand Poet Laureate 2022-2025. Te Pouhuaki National Librarian Rachel Esson described Chris’s appointment as Poet Laureate as recognition of “a poet leading a generational and cultural shift in the reach and appreciation of poetry in Aotearoa”. Read more

Cleo Browne - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Cleo Browne 

Rina Pinker, writing as Cleo Browne, found happiness from a young age in reading and writing, although her first stories often ended with the line, “and then they died”. As an adult she writes dark romantic comedies with diverse men and women and she’s got better at not killing all her characters off. Read more

Courtney Clark Michaels - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Courtney Clark Michaels

Award-winning author Courtney Ieremia writes as Courtney Clark Michaels.  Courtney’s passion for writing strong, independent heroines and sexy, smart men is equalled only by her passion for travel, online shopping, and patting other people’s dogs. Read more

Emily Perkins - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Emily Perkins

Emily Perkins is an award-winning writer of novels, short stories, personal essays, plays, and screenwriting. Her latest novel, Lioness (Bloomsbury, 2023), won the Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2024. Read more

Fletcher McKenzie - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Fletcher McKenzie

Fletcher McKenzie is an accomplished author and aviator, known for his engaging books on aviation, including From the Pilot’s Seat. Fletcher created the global television show FlightpathTV and operates an international aircraft sales and parts supply business. Read more

Lauren Keenan - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Lauren Keenan

Writer Lauren Keenan (Te Āti Awa ki Taranaki) is the author of the bestselling historical fiction for adults The Space Between (Penguin, 2024). She is also the author of the award-winning middle reader book Amorangi and Millie’s Trip Through Time (Huia Publishing 2021) and the sequel Rimu (Huia Publishing), to be released in July. Read more

Nic Low - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Nic Low

Nic Low's writing on wilderness, technology, and race has been widely published and anthologised. His first book Arms Race, a collection of speculative fictions was shortlisted for the Readings and Steele Rudd prizes and named New Zealand Listener and Australian Book Review book of the year. Read more

Nici Wickes - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Nici Wickes

Nici Wickes is the author of More from a Quiet Kitchen, A Quiet Kitchen, World Kitchen and Cook Eat Enjoy. Nici has worked as a food editor and restaurant reviewer for Viva, NZ Herald, as well as creating, testing, and styling recipes for New Zealand Woman’s Weekly. Read more

Peter Jerram - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Peter Jerram

Peter Jerram is a well-known retired Marlborough veterinarian and author. His first two books stemmed from his work with animals. His latest, The Team that Hit the Rocks, is a more personal read of his experience on board the doomed Wahine passenger ferry. Read more

Rachael King - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Rachael King

Rachael King is an award-winning author and reviewer. Her latest book, The Grimmelings, was published to wide acclaim in February. Her earlier children’s book, Red Rocks, is in development for television. Her adult novels are The Sound of Butterflies and Magpie Hall. Read more

Shaye Torrel - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Shaye Torrel

Sarah Thornley writing as Shaye Torrel has always loved to make believe. After a brush with her mortality, she realised there’s no Someday to chase your Happily Ever After, only Today. Now she’s happily pursuing her life-long dream of writing. Sarah released her debut novel A Dark Dawn, an urban romantasy, earlier this year. Read more

Sue Mackay - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Sue Mackay

Published in 13 languages, Sue Mackay is currently writing her 50th book for the Mills & Boon Medical line. Writing is her dream career despite the days she pulls her hair out because the work in progress is not going to plan. Living in the Marlborough Sounds adds to the passion for exciting stories. Read more

Sue McCauley - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Sue McCauley

Sue McCauley QSM, is a novelist, short story writer, playwright, journalist, and screenwriter. Her first novel, Other Halves (1982), won the Wattie Book of the Year Award and the New Zealand Book Award for Fiction. In subsequent years, Sue wrote five more novels, two short story collections and a biography. Read more

Tayi Tibble - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Tayi Tibble

Tayi Tibble (Te Whānau a Apanui, Ngāti Porou) is a poet and writer. Her first collection of poetry, Poūkahangatus, won the Jessie Mackay Prize for Poetry at the 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. Tayi’s second book, Rangikura was shortlisted for the 2022 Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry at the Ockham Awards. Read more

Vitale Lafaele - author at the 2024 Marlborough Book Festival

Vitale Lafaele

Vitale Lafaele is the eldest son of his hardworking Samoan immigrant family, who arrived in Auckland in the 70s and faced the challenges of life in a new country. He was one of three of 300 recruits to the New Zealand SAS who made it through the gruelling initiation period and later rose through the New Zealand police force to the rank of Area Commander. Read more

Our 2024 Interviewers

The Marlborough Book Festival thanks our fabulous interviewers for all their support and good work. This year, we have a number of regulars joined by some new hands:

  • Belinda Jackson
  • Des Ashton
  • Emma Tucker
  • Jane Forrest Waghorn
  • Kat Mason
  • Louis Pinker Meihana
  • Nikki Macdonald
  • Dr Peter Meihana
  • Sally McLennan
  • Tania Miller
  • Tessa Nicholson