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BOOK WORMS: Inaugural book festival organised by Bushey resident to celebrate the romance genre

 Published on: 8th May 2024   |   By: Annabel Stock   |   Category: Uncategorized

The UK’s first-ever romance book festival is coming to Bushey this summer.

MeetCute Book Fest is the brainchild of Bushey resident Andi Forsythe, known by her pen name Lauren Forsythe, who has been a romance novelist for more than a decade. Andi, who is the author of The Fixer Upper and Dealbreakers, spoke to BUSHEYnews about the festival.

She said: “It’s been an ongoing conversation amongst romance writers for some time that while there are plenty of thriller and crime festivals, there isn’t an event for romance authors and readers.

“Romance is hugely commercially successful; it’s the second most successful genre, but it is often looked down upon and seen as frivolous. I did a degree in English and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, and it was even looked down upon there.

“I think reading for enjoyment is really important and the genre brings people joy. I remember getting a review from a woman who had been reading one of my books to her mother while in hospital; that’s the kind of thing that makes it all worthwhile.”

The festival will feature various panels, Q&As, workshops and stalls, and visitors will have the chance to buy books signed by the authors. Among the writers attending are Cesca Major, Cressida McLaughlin, Rowan Coleman and many more.

MeetCute Book Fest will take place at Bushey Rose Garden, a suitably “creative historical place” on Saturday, June 22. The festival is being run on a very small budget to ensure it remains free to attend. To reserve your free ticket, visit

Andi said: “We hope people will come together and be inspired, take the chance to try their hand at writing themselves, and discover some new favourite authors. We hope it will take off.”

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