Wednesday 28th March  2018

McGrigor Hall at 8.00pm

Tickets £5 with 10% off the book.

There will be a pay bar.

Ken Porter was born in Laindon in 1944. He is a leading enthusiast in the Basildon Borough Heritage Group and Laindon and District Community Archive and gives talks to local societies. Ken’s interest in the First World War began with the discovery of his maternal grandfather’s involvement in, and injury at, the Battle of the Somme on the first day tanks were used. Ken’s interest in the Clacton area stems from a childhood spent there.

This book gives a brief history of the major nearby villages Brightlingsea, St Oysths, Clacton on Sea, Holland on Sea, Frinton and Walton on the Naze as they developed from agricultural areas, to seaside resorts in the mid to late 1800s, and then into heavily defended hives of activity.

The local villages produced a considerable number of men who were awarded the Military Medal/Cross, and Walton on the Naze produced one VC in Herbert Columbine. The tremendous efforts of others are also covered, in particular those of the local women folk. A number of appropriate poems, many written at the time, are included throughout the book, as well as rarely seen photographs and insightful reports from the local papers of that period.

Do join us for this fascinating evening of local history.

Local Author Book Signing

We are delighted to welcome local author

Vanessa Streete who will be signing her debut novel Like China in the shop on

Saturday 17th March from 11am – 12.30pm.

Dobson, just one of those names anyone who’s anyone in London knows. Elizabeth and her brother James have it all – the clubs, the money, the high life, but after the sudden death of their parents the only thing they really have is each other, and that’s the way they’re both determined things are going to stay. With help from Michael, James’ best friend, it’s the way it stays for a while, but time and the violent side of their nocturnal profession are against them at every turn. There are people so desperate to take it all away that they will go to any lengths to get what they want and that includes Elizabeth’s innocence, but Michael has other plans for her on that score and he fights at James’ side to protect her, painfully living the lie of brotherly pretense that has kept his shameful secret from even himself for so long. This is the original fight for a really deep love, the original battle between good and evil, and the honest truth about love and loss and love again.

The book is priced at £10.99 and Ness will be happy to sign the book for you.

Tickets sold out for Supper Book Club

Introducing Luke Allnutt and We Own the Sky

Luke Allnutt started writing WE OWN THE SKY while going through chemotherapy; as he wanted to create something for the people he loved. He said: “All the emotion I felt from losing my father, fearing that I wouldn’t be around to watch my sons grow up, went into creating this family — Rob, Anna, and Jack — that I loved and cared about so much. I suppose the book was really a love note to my own family. It explores how people facing an unimaginable loss manage to survive, how their love for each other can endure against all odds.”

Luke was picked up off the slushpile and landed a million pound international deal! It is your classic rags to riches slushpile miracle, so do come and meet him on Wednesday 28th February at 6.30pm. 

Tickets are £5 which includes a glass of prosecco and canapés.

For more information about the book – please see our Events page.

Supper Book Club with author Claire Fuller

Thursday 22nd February  2018

Café 19 at 6.30pm

Tickets £25 for 2 courses, coffee & a copy of one of Claire’s books.

We are delighted to announce that

Claire Fuller, author of the bestseller

Our Endless Numbered Days will be joining us to talk about her latest novel Swimming Lessons.

Please see below for an outline of each of Claire’s books.

Café 19’s delicious menu can now be seen on our Events page.


‘Gil Coleman looked down from the window and saw his dead wife standing on the pavement below.’

Gil’s wife, Ingrid has been missing, presumed drowned, for twelve years.

A possible sighting brings their children, Nan and Flora, home. Together they begin to confront the mystery of their mother. Is Ingrid dead? Or did she leave? And do the letters hidden within Gil’s books hold the answer to the truth behind his marriage, a truth hidden from everyone including his own children?

‘Thrilling, transporting, delicately realised and held together by a sophisticated sense of suspense…more than matches the power of Fuller’s debut… Powerful, pleasing and pleasurable.’ Sunday Times


Claire’s brilliant first novel Our Endless Numbered Days won the DESMOND ELLIOTT PRIZE in 2015 and tells the story of eight year old Peggy Hillcoat is eight. It’s 1976 and Peggy spends her summer camping with her father, playing her beloved record of The Railway Children and listening to her mother’s grand piano, but her pretty life is about to change.

Her survivalist father, who has been stockpiling provisions for the end which is surely coming soon, takes her from London to a cabin in a remote European forest. There he tells Peggy the rest of the world has disappeared.  Her life is reduced to a piano which makes music but no sound, a forest where all that grows is a means of survival.  And a tiny wooden hut that is Everything.

‘Fuller handles the tension masterfully in this grown-up thriller of a fairytale, full of clues, questions and intrigue.’ – The Times

‘Extraordinary…From the opening sentence it is gripping’ – Sunday Times

Christmas Cheer with Caxton Books

On Friday 15th December from 6-7pm we will be sharing a festive glass with author

Paul Kerensa

who will be signing his latest book

HARK! The Biography of Christmas

We will also be offering 10% off all book purchases to help you complete your Christmas shopping.

We do hope you can join us!

Paul is an award-winning writer of TV, radio, books and his own stand-up comedy, which he still performs twice or thrice a week. He’s part of the British Comedy Award-winning writing team for BBC’s Miranda, the Rose d-Or Award-winning writing team for BBC1’s Not Going Out, he’s written for cult shows like C4’s TFI Friday and BBC Radio 4’s The Now Show and Dead Ringers, as well as mainstream hits like BBC’s Top Gear, Buble at the BBC and the BBC Music Awards.


In this delightful sleigh ride through Christmas history, Paul Kerensa answers the festive questions you never thought to ask. . . Did Cromwell help shape the mince pie? Was St Nicholas the first to use an automatic door? Which classic Christmas crooners were inspired by a Hollywood heatwave? And did King Herod really have a wife called Doris? Whether you mull on wine or enjoy the biggest turkey, the biggest tree or the biggest credit card bill, unwrap your story through our twelve dates of Christmas past. From Roman revelry to singing Bing, via Santa, Scrooge and a snoozing saviour, this timeless tale is perfect trivia fodder for the Christmas dinner table.

Author Supper Book Club with A L Kennedy

We are delighted to welcome to Frinton

 the award winning writer and performer 

A. L. Kennedy

Tuesday 28th November – 7pm at Cafe 19

Her work includes novels, short stories, drama, non-fiction and journalism for a variety of UK and overseas publications.  She is also a stand-up comedian and can often be heard on BBC Radio 4.


Her most recent novel, Serious Sweet, was longlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prizes and tells the story of two middle-aged people desperate to improve their lives.  As Jon and Meg navigate the sweet and serious heart of London – passing through 24 hours that will change them both for ever – they tell a very unusual, unbearably moving love story.

Do join us for what we know will be a truly entertaining evening.

Tickets £15 for 2 courses & coffee

For more information on the novel, please see our Book Club page.

Orla Kiely joins the Books Are My Bag Hall of Fame

Book Shop Day 2017 is THIS
Saturday – 7th October

Meet the Author…
Meet the Artist…

AND grab a Limited Edition
Orla Kiely BAMB Tote Bag

To celebrate Book Shop Day 2017 we have lots of exciting things to make you smile:

Join us for coffee and cake at 11am on Saturday to meet local author Neil Watson who will be talking about his first thriller Muddy Water, set in his home town of Wivenhoe.  For more information about the book, please see our Book Shop page.

Neil will be joined by his wife Jane Watson who is a self-taught artist with a passion for colour.  She is a regular exhibitor in the gallery and will be showing some new work this Saturday to celebrate BAMB Day.  The delightful boat collage above is one of her recent works.



And while you are here, we also have 3 great offers for you:

Offer 1:  Grab a Christmas Catalogue and 20% DISCOUNT TOKEN for all orders placed from the catalogue by 5pm on Halloween.

Offer 2:  Spend £30 and get this year’s beautiful Limited Edition BAMB Bag designed by award-winning designer Orla Kiely (while stocks last).

Offer 3:  Take away a free Children’s Tote Bag featuring Pip and Posy


Re-live the Amazing Weeley Festival of 1971

The Great British Woodstock – Weeley Festival 1971 with DJ Ray Clark

Thursday 28th September at 7pm

Walton & Frinton Yacht Club

Tickets £5.00

Ray Clark is a radio presenter with more than 30 years’ experience. Starting his career onboard Radio Caroline in the 80’s, he’s since been heard on a number of radio stations  – Notably Breeze and BBC Essex, presenting the breakfast shows of both radio stations for a total of 15 years – he was responsible for waking up many thousands of radio listeners every day in Essex.

He has written two books …. so far: Radio Caroline – The true story of the boat that rocked – and The Great British Woodstock – the incredible story of Weeley Festival.

Ray attended the Weeley festival as a 17 year old … as did 150,000 others – a truly amazing event, the likes of which would …. and could never happen again.

Join us to hear Ray’s account of this ground-breaking event, together with tales of his time aboard the boat that rocked!

Join us to meet best-selling thriller writer John Connolly

Saturday 2nd September in the Mcgrigor Hall at 7pm

John Connolly, best known for his hugely popular Charlie Parker thrillers, will be launching his new book he. 

This book was born in 1999, when John Connolly was visiting a friend in LA.  A derby hat was mentioned in the course of the conversation – one given as a gift by an aging comic actor and this planted a seed from which comes an extraordinary fictional reimagining of the life of one of the greatest screen comedians the world has ever known.   He was a man who knew both adoration and humiliation; who loved and was loved in turn; who betrayed and was betrayed; who never sought to cause pain to others, yet left a trail of affairs and broken marriages in his wake…  And whose life was ultimately defined by one relationship of such tenderness and devotion that only death could sever it; his partnership with the man he knew as Babe.

With he, John Connolly recreates the golden age of Hollywood for an intensely compassionate study of the tension between commercial demands and artistic integrity, the human frailties behind even the greatest of artists, and one of the most enduring and beloved partnerships in cinema history: Laurel & Hardy.

Join us for a short Laurel & Hardy film and to hear John Connolly talk about his amazing journey discovering the truth about this extraordinary character.

he is Stan Laurel,

But he did not really exist.  Stan Laurel was a fiction.

And this is his tale….


Tickets £5 with 10% off the book.  There will be a pay bar.

Only one week to go before our next fascinating event …

Wednesday 16th August at 7pm at Walton & Frinton Yacht Club…

Rosheen & Cal Finnigan will be talking about their new book

Letters from the Suitcase

A love affair through letters, this is an enchanting, poignant and incredibly moving account of the five year marriage between two lovers divided by war and the legacy they left for their only child. These letters reveal David and Mary’s surprisingly frank and modern attitudes on everything from sex to politics together with details of their lives: Mary working as a secretary at Bletchley Park and David as a young officer in action on the other side of the world. It is also the story of a father that Rosheen Finnigan never knew, and a fascinating social history, utterly unique in the telling.

Tickets are still available at £10 each which includes a glass of wine, canapés and 10% off the hardback book.