Edinburgh's Radical Bookshop

First Date Romance Festival 2024

14.06.2024 : 17:00 - 20:30
image for event: First Date Romance Festival 2024


Save The Date dear reader: On 14-15th June YOU are invited to join us for another edition of our First Date romance festival!

As great lovers of romance and feel good fiction - and following a fortuitous conversation with Jenny Colgan in 2022 - we thought it was high time we created a platform for a much beloved genre that deserves its own stage, and so we give you FIRST DATE!

Now in our second year, FIRST DATE serves up a dazzling variety of romance books, events discussing genre boundaries, subversive politics, queer joy, and feminist pleasure, *and* an all-day marketplace to find your next (or maybe your first?) romance read. We’ve added an erotica writing workshop, a somatic pleasure workshop, and a book launch with dinner to the programme, bringing you even more ways to engage with this broad and exciting genre.

‘Pleasure is the point. Feeling good is not frivolous, it is freedom’ - adrienne maree brown

I know we said it last year, but it deserves to be said again: Romance writing has long shown that the personal is definitely political. The genre has hosted important conversations on consent, and represents a huge diversity of stories which are still missing from mainstream fiction - joy and pleasure for women, queer people, people of colour, fat people, disabled people, and more. Too often it’s seen as a frivolous genre - but our pleasure is not frivolous! Our pleasure is radical.

All events will take place in person at Summerhall, with plenty of space for book stalls, movement, writing, and talking about all things romance. AND we will of course livestream all events to the Lighthouse website & YouTube for anyone who wants to join in from afar. You can browse the events, reserve your tickets, and pre-order books below!

BOOK STALLS at Summerhall: FREE TO BROWSE! Friday 14th June 5-7pm, Saturday 15th June 10am-8.30pm