Robin Stevens

Oxford Literary Festival’s line-up for children and young people this year is incredible! Here are our top picks to book now!

PAWS FOR THOUGHT: SF Said, Tyger, Saturday, 1 April Exeter College Marquee. Age 9+ Join Blue Peter award-winning author SF Said as he tells his own story from avid young reader and Star Wars fan, to writing his prize-winning novels, Varjak Paw, The Outlaw Varjak Paw, Phoenix, and new book Tyger. Learn how he creates exciting, action-packed stories and unforgettable worlds in this energetic, fun and inspiring event. BOOK HERE

SF Said

ACTION AND ADVENTURE: Jonathan Stroud: The Outlaws Scarlett and Browne. Saturday, 25 March, 2pm. Weston Lecture Theatre. Age 10+ Have you fallen in love with the outlaws Scarlett and Browne yet? With Oxford flooded and the rest of the country a wilderness, they hold their own as gunfights and monsters collide. Discover how Jonathan created these books and ask questions too about Lockwood & Co, now a major Netflix series, and his Bartimaeus books. BOOK HERE: BOOK HERE

FANTASY: Frances Hardinge: Unraveller, Saturday, 25 March, 4pm. Weston Lecture Theatre. Age 11+ The award winning master of fantasy talks about her magical, mysterious and spellbinding new book, Unraveller – a tale of curses, old pacts, rage, recovery, mysterious marsh-woods, magical spiders and moonlit markets. BOOK NOW

Frances Hardinge

GRUESOME: Horrible Histories 30th Anniversary with illustrator Martin Brown Saturday, 1 April. 10am. Exeter College Marquee. Age 8+. Celebrate 30 Horrible Years of the world’s bestselling children’s history series! Expect savage stories, gruesome games, foul facts and deadly drawing, as well as the best worst bits of history from brand new book ‘Horrible Histories: The Worst in the World!’.

Martin Brown

THRILLER: Anthony Horowitz. Sunday, 26 March, 10am. Sheldonian Theatre. Age 8+. The brilliant, bestselling author talks about the inspiration and passions behind his books the Diamond Brothers detective adventures, the Alex Rider spy series and the Power of Five thrillers. This will be an hour of unbeatable entertainment. BOOK NOW

Anthony Horowitz copyright Jon Cartwright

DRAGONS: Cressida Cowell, Which Way to Anywhere. Sunday, 26 March 2pm. Sheldonian Theatre. Age 8+ Join Cressida Cowell and ask her questions as she talks about her out-of-this-world new series, Which Way to Anywhere, her bestselling series How to Train Your Dragon books and The Wizards of Once series. BOOK HERE

CRESSIDA COWELL DESK c. Debra Hurford Brown

NATURE: Michael Morpurgo. Tales from the Farm: Writing about Nature, Animals and the Landscape. Sunday, 26 March 12 noon. Sheldonian Theatre. Age 6+ and anyone who loves listening to stories. The bestselling and much-loved author talks about how nature, animals and the landscape inspire his writing. He will also read his latest books Tales from the Farm, inspired by the farms run by his Farms for City Children charity and the animals that live there. BOOK HERE

Michael Morpurgo

WHO DUNNIT: Robin Stevens, Ministry of Unladylike. Sunday, 2 April 12. Sheldonian Theatre. Age 9+ The Agatha Christie for young people! The author of the award-winning and hugely popular Murder Most Unladylike series to find out about her new series Ministry of Unladylike Activity. Robin will share tips and tricks on how to write the perfect murder mystery and the inspiration behind her new team of detectives. Put your own sleuthing skills to the test and ask your burning questions. BOOK HERE

Robin Stevens

ANIMAL MAGIC: Hannah Gold, unforgettable animal adventures
Sunday, 2 April. 2pm. Exeter College: Marquee. Age 8+
Are you passionate about protecting our planet? Hannah Gold’s unforgettable adventures celebrate the love between children and nature and show that no one is too young or insignificant to make a difference. Prepare to be inspired by tales of April and Bear from The Last Bear and Rio and White Beak in Hannah’s new novel The Lost Whale. BOOK HERE

Hannah Gold

ASTRONOMY: Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, Am I Made of Stardust? Saturday April 1, 12 noon. Sheldonian Theatre. Family. The super star space scientist and presenter of BBC’s Sky at Night is back with her new book, Am I Made of Stardust? and ready to answer any questions about the wonders of the universe. Maggie will also explore her own journey into science and how, with enough enthusiasm, anyone can make it. BOOK HERE

Dr Maggie Aderin Pocock

BOLLYWOOD: Puneet Bhandal, Bollywood Adventures. Saturday, 25 March 12 noon 1 hour. Exeter College Marquee Age 8+. The former Bollywood journalist has worked behind the scenes in the Bollywood industry for years. She is also the author of Starlet Rivals in the Bollywood Academy series. Join Puneet for real life insights into the glamorous world of Bollywood and meet Bela and her friends. Puneet might also teach you some Bollywood dance moves of your own! BOOK NOW

Puneet Bhandal_

Rob Biddulph: Draw with Rob, Sunday, 2 April 2023 10am. Sheldonian Theatre. Age 6+. Join the record-breaking, award-winning author and illustrator and creator of lockdown phenomenon: #DrawWithRob YouTube class. Think stories, a singalong and lots of drawing! In this special family friendly event Rob will also talk about the second book in his Peanut Jones trilogy, Peanut Jones and the Twelve Portals. BOOK HERE

Rob Biddulph

POETRY: New Children’s Laureate Joseph Coelho Tuesday, 28 March 1pm. Sheldonian Theatre. Suitable for children in years 4, 5 and 6. Inspire your young poets with this rip-roaring adventure into the world of poems. Joe will share some of his special poetry prompts, reminding us all of the joy that writing, reading and performing poetry can bring. BOOK HERE

Joseph Coelho, The Waterstones Children’s Laureate 2022 – 2024

INTERACTION: Mini Grey: The Greatest Show on Earth. Saturday 1 April 2023 2pm. Exeter College: Marquee. 6+. Join the award-winning author and illustrator on a whistle-stop tour through life on Earth – all 4.6 billion years of it! Meet the amazing creatures and the events that occurred such as mass extinctions. Voyage into the deep past, and explore an actual 600 million year Tape Measure of Time. Learn to draw Rod the Roach and his fellow Shoe Box Theatre Troupe. BOOK HERE

Mini Grey – The Greatest Show on Earth

YOUNG ILLUSTRATORS: Leo Timmers and Fiona Ross on Elephant Island, Sunday 2 April, 4pm. Lincoln College’s Oakeshott Room. Age 5+. Calling on Oxford’s youngest illustrators to help create a giant picture while actor and storyteller Fiona Ross invites the audience to adventure on Elephant Island using their ideas, imagination and problem-solving skills. BOOK HERE

Leo Timmers

For more information on Oxford Literary Festival which runs from March 25-April 2, go to