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Greta Thunberg to launch new book at London Literature Festival

Climate activist Greta Thunberg speaking on the Pyramid Stage during the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset (Yui Mok/PA)
Climate activist Greta Thunberg speaking on the Pyramid Stage during the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset (Yui Mok/PA)

Greta Thunberg has been announced as the headliner for this year’s London Literature Festival.

The 19-year-old climate activist will use her slot to launch The Climate Book, a collection of more than 100 contributions from figures such as economist Kate Raworth, writer and activist Naomi Klein and author Margaret Atwood.

Hosted in collaboration with Penguin Live at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, her speech will be live streamed for free around the world.

The festival, which takes place from October 20-30, will also host a series of events exploring the climate crisis.

Science journalist, author and broadcaster Gaia Vince will demonstrate how migration could be the answer in an event around her new book, Nomad Century.

In a special live recording, BBC Radio 4’s Open Book will look at how our natural environment has shaped our fictional landscapes.

Elsewhere, writers Jessie Greengrass and Daisy Hildyard will discuss the imminent emergencies of everyday life as they launch their respective new works.

Ted Hodgkinson, head of literature and spoken word at the Southbank Centre, said: “I am truly thrilled that Greta Thunberg is headlining this year’s festival in a world exclusive launch of The Climate Book.

“With inclusivity and accessibility at the Southbank Centre’s heart, we’re also live streaming this event for free around the world.

“We welcome everyone to join us to celebrate the power of language and explore the most timely story of today – how and why our planet is changing.

“This year’s London Literature Festival promises to inspire, entertain and empower audiences of all ages.

“We’re combining the very best of our year-round programme with a wider range of aspiring writers and events, featuring emerging homegrown London talent alongside internationally acclaimed authors, artists and thinkers, plus an exciting and engaging free programme for all the family.”

The festival line-up also features appearances from UK and international literary names such as Malorie Blackman, Karl Ove Knausgard and George Saunders as well as YouTuber Adam B, actress Minnie Driver, chat show host Graham Norton and broadcaster Jon Snow.

Tickets go on sale to Southbank Centre Members on Thursday June 30 and to the general public on Friday July 1 online.

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