Nazir is a former Chief Crown Prosecutor and was Chief Executive of the UK’s Police & Crime Commissioners. During a 24-year career, Nazir prosecuted some of the most high-profile cases in the country and advised on many others, with a special focus on domestic violence, child sexual abuse, and honour-based violence. He worked personally on the most high-profile cases, whilst simultaneously overseeing the thousands of prosecutions each year, and is particularly notable for his prosecution of the so-called Rochdale sex grooming gang. Today he sits on the board of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) and is also National Adviser on Gender Based Violence to the Welsh Government. In 2018, he joined the advisory board of Google’s Innovation Fund for counter-extremism.
Katie is former journalist and columnist at the Guardian and Observer, whose debut novel is Everything Happens for a Reason. Although fictional, the premise is loosely autobiographical, as Katie’s son, Finn, was stillborn in 2010, and her character’s experience of grief is based on her own. And yes, someone did tell her that ‘everything happens for a reason’. Katie grew up in Warwickshire and now lives in South London with her husband, children, dog, cat and stick insects. When she’s not writing or walking children and dogs, Katie loves baking and playing the piano.
Rosie was born and grew up in Liverpool, the third of twelve children. She studied History at Cambridge before becoming an English teacher. She lives in Hertfordshire with her husband and daughter. In Rosie's debut novel The Leviathan, set in Norfolk in 1643, a young soldier returns home during the English Civil War to face rumours of witchcraft, and a dark threat involving an old shipwreck.
Ayanna is a writer from Trinidad & Tobago. She is a graduate of the University of the West Indies and holds an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia, where she is now a Creative and Critical Writing PhD candidate. Her work has been published in Moko Magazine, Small Axe and PREE, among others, and shortlisted for Small Axe Literary Competition and the Wasafiri New Writing Prize. When We Were Birds is her first novel; she is now working on her second which will be published by Hamish Hamilton in 2025. Ayanna lives with her husband in London.
Adina is the BBC’s Community Affairs Correspondent and has a wide brief reporting on stories in the UK and abroad. They recently include looking at the impact of the pandemic on ethnic minority groups, George Floyd’s murder and covering the London Mayoral election as part of BBC One’s special programme coverage. She was also deployed to Buckingham Palace when the Duke of Edinburgh died. Before working in network news, Adina used to report and present on BBC South Today covering stories in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and surrounding areas. Adina is a fitness enthusiast and a mum: she gave birth to her son during the first national lockdown.
Joey has a degree in forensic science and has worked in the Criminal Justice System for twelve years. He's a former Crime Scene Investigator, Forensic Examiner, and Forensic Quality Consultant. He also serves as a Magistrate in the adult criminal court. He regularly engages in public speaking about perceptions of forensic science and has lectured at universities, provided awareness training for barristers, and appeared in a BBC Ideas vodcast and BBC1 documentary. He has a penchant for snowboarding and procrastination.
Stacey was born in Lancashire and worked as a journalist before her debut The Familiars was published in 2019. It was the bestselling debut hardback novel of that year, won a Betty Trask Award and was shortlisted for the British Book Awards' Debut Book of the Year. The Foundling, her second novel, was also a Sunday Times top ten bestseller. Mrs England is her third novel.
Antonia is the author of the bestselling Thomas Hawkins historical crime series. She has won the CWA Historical Dagger and been shortlisted for many other awards, including the Theakston’s Crime Novel of the Year. Her most recent book,The Silver Collar, was shortlisted for the HWA Gold Crown in 2021. Originally from Derby, she worked in publishing for over twenty years, before taking the leap to write full time. She now lives in Kent.
Ruth has now sold over a million books. Her first novel, The Keeper of Lost Things, was a Sunday Times bestseller and a Richard & Judy pick and is published in over 30 countries. Her next novels, The Wisdom of Sally Red Shoes and Queenie Malone's Paradise Hotel, helped establish her as one of the queens of uplifting fiction. Madame Burova, her fourth novel, is set in her beloved Brighton. Ruth lives in a chaotic Victorian house with an assortment of rescue dogs and her long-suffering husband.
Cara is the author of the Sunday Times bestselling crime novels featuring DI Adam Fawley and his Oxford-based police team. Her books have sold over a million copies in the UK alone, and been translated into 23 languages so far. Her fourth novel, No Way Out was selected by the Sunday Times as one of the 100 best crime novels since 1945. Her first novel Close to Home sold over half a million copies, was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick and was shortlisted for Crime Book of the Year in the British Book Awards 2019. The fifth book, The Whole Truth, published this year, is a Richard and Judy summer pick for 2021. The TV rights to the series have been acquired by the Fremantle group.
Harriet combines a lifetime of teaching English with experience on the local literary scene, both in book retail and as an interviewer at festivals and other events.
William is the Irish author of five novels, including the Captain Korolev series set in 1930s Moscow. They have been shortlisted for numerous awards, including the Irish Fiction Award, the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year, the Endeavour Historical Gold Crown and the Crime Writers Association’s Steel, Historical and New Blood Daggers. His latest novel, A House of Ghosts, set in 1917, has been described as ‘an atmospheric, hugely entertaining mystery that offers all the pleasures of a classic ghost story – with an appealing dash of romance’. William lives in London and is a licensed mudlarker and keen cyclist.
Antonia is a writer and journalist. She has published two novels set during the English Civil War, and one in twelfth Century Scotland. The latest is The Tyrant's Shadow. Antonia also reviews historical fiction for The Times.
Dave is a BeaconLit founder. His popular crime series featuring detectives Lizzie Archer and Dan Baines is set in Buckinghamshire’s Aylesbury Vale. His latest novel, Die in the Dark, is the sixth in the series. In Ink, published in 2020, introduced DI Nathan Quarrel in the start of a new series set in West Hertfordshire. Dave is also a scriptwriter and lyricist.davesivers.co.uk
Sandra's freelance articles, interviews and reviews have been published in a wide range of national magazines including Country Life, The Lady and The Chap, as well as regularly featuring in regional publications. Sandra is also a ghostwriter, creative writing tutor, editor, proofreader and competition judge. She lives in Buckinghamshire and is delighted to be returning to this year’s BeaconLit.
Andrew joined Thames Valley Police in 2000 and has worked across both the urban and rural areas of Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. Currently a Detective Inspector, he has spent the last two decades working in various roles including uniformed response, custody, neighbourhood policing, CID and Public Protection within the realm of Domestic abuse. He lives in Oxfordshire with his wife and three young sons. When not entertaining the children, he enjoys an active lifestyle, keeping fit and enjoying rugby.