A cornerstone of the festival’s B-Lit Programme, the Takeover Challenge gives local students control of a whole day of festival events; they choose the topics, pick the speakers, market the events – and they’re the ones running the show on the day.

Oasis Lister Park presents ‘Brave New Worlds: Why Do We Love Dystopian Fiction?’

The world today feels increasingly nightmarish. The evident effects of climate change, melting ice caps, plastic-choked oceans, desperate refugees left abandoned in camps and detention centres.

The news in 2019, rivals any dystopian novel of the last century. This event will explore the history and enduring appeal of the dystopian novel in even the darkest times.


This year we are excited to launch our new B-Lit Programme for young people aged 13 – 18, made possible by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation. Look out for events marked with the B-Lit stamp as tickets are free for anybody aged 18 or under. 



About The Speakers

Fiona Shaw

Fiona Shaw is the author of the YA novel, Outwalkers, shortlisted for the YA Book Prize, longlisted for the Branford Boase Award. Her adult novel Tell it to the Bees, has been adapted for film, starring Anna Paquin & Holliday Grainger. It is released in the UK on July 19th 2019.

Tade Thompson

Tade Thompson is the author of Rosewater, an Arthur C. Clarke Award finalist, John W. Campbell Award finalist and winner of the 2017 Nommo Award for Best Novel. Born in London, he lives and works on the south coast of England where he battles an addiction to books.

About The Chair

Jared Shurin

Jared Shurin is the editor of The Outcast Hours, The Djinn Falls in Love, The Lowest Heaven and many other books, including the annual Best of British Fantasy series.