On Thursday 6th June, Penguin Random House UK gathered to celebrate some of our most exciting authors, their forthcoming books, and the transformative power of reading. From Malorie Blackman, Stormzy and Bill Bryson, to Dolly Alderton, Simon Sinek and Ai Weiwei – the show brought together an incredible, diverse – and unexpected – line-up of authors and actors to explore what sparks the imagination and the way that reading and books can change people’s lives.
‘Penguin Presents’ saw 1,500 colleagues, alongside select guests from the creative and media industries, come together and invited to rethink the traditional role of the publisher and our place in the wider creative industries landscape. Through the theme of ‘Penguin Imagines’, we asked our authors to share their vision for a hopeful future and how reading can have a positive impact in the world. We wanted the show to contemplate tomorrow and acknowledge its challenges without falling into dystopian clichés: instead, offering a much-needed antidote to pessimism.
Here we’ve compiled some of the incredible highlights from the show:
Tom Weldon, our CEO, gave an opening speech in which he talked about how, more than ever, books are leading the cultural discourse. He talked of how publishing has never been more alive, exciting and influential, and how there’s never been a more important moment for Penguin Random House UK. Tom also paid tribute to three colleagues who have very sadly died this year.