The comedic writing of Donald Westlake and Elmore Leonard will be the focus of one of several roundtables at the 2016 Festival International du Roman Noir (FIRN) [International Festival of the Noir Novel]. The roundtable, Masters of laughter: Elmore Leonard and Donald Westlake, will be hosted by Michel Abescat, respected Editor-in-Chief of the French culture and TV magazine Télérama. The panel will include:
- Abby Westlake, author, celebrated gardener, Donald Westlake’s widow and favorite co-conspirator
- Laurent Chalumeau, journalist, author, screenwriter and Elmore Leonard biographer
- François Guérif, renowned publisher (Directeur de la Collection, Rivage/Noir), editor, film critic and first non-American recipient of MWA’s Ellery Queen Award in 1997
- Louis Sanders, esteemed translator and author, winner of the Cognac Film Festival’s Grand Prize of the French Thriller in 2003
- Fred Vargas, historian, archeologist and much lauded novelist, first author to win the CWA’s International Dagger Award for three successive novels
The festival runs five days from June 22-26 in Frontignan, Herault, France. The Westlake-Leonard Roundtable will take place on Saturday, June 25, at 4pm local time. You can learn more about the week of events on the festival website.
Merci beaucoup to FIRN President Natalie Castagné and Martine Gonzalez of Soleil Noir for inviting Abby to the festival, and to Ms. Gonzalez for providing information for this post.