Open Book, Literary Landscapes: Belfast

Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities


Open Book's summer series on Literary Landscapes concludes with one of the most documented yet little understood cities in the United Kingdom - Belfast. A byword for sectarian violence, Belfast is sandwiched between encroaching mountains and the sea;the city is built on mud-flats and has inspired countless poets and authors.

Open Book's literary guide to this multi faced and complicated city is author Glenn Patterson, described as Northern Ireland's prose laureate. Born in Belfast, Glenn has been writing about the city since the 1980s. His first novel 'Burning Your Own' won the Betty Trask prize. He still lives in Belfast and his work reflects its ever changing nature.

Glenn takes Mariella around his city - to the setting of his latest novel, to where the old Belfast docks began in the footsteps of Anthony Trollope, to the foot of the surrounding hills which inspired Jonathan Swift and to the last independent bookshop in the city.

Period29 Aug 2013

Media contributions


Media contributions

  • TitleOpen Book
    Media name/outletBBC Radio 4
    Duration/Length/Size28 minutes
    Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
    DescriptionLiterary Landscapes - Belfast
    Producer/AuthorRuth Sanderson (producer), Mariella Frostrup (presenter)
    PersonsGlenn Patterson