The annual Dorset Reading Conference has big names on this year's programme for November 13 at Bovington middle school: Philippa Pearce, Kevin Crossley-Holland, Celia Rees, Philip Reeve, Susan Gates, plus Giles "Purple Ronnie" Andreae. Full details from p.browne@ dorsetcc.gov.uk; tel: 01929 405060. On the same day, East Meets West is the theme of this year's International Board on Books for Young People conference at the University of Surrey, Roehampton. Authors joining the debate include Bali Rai (author of Unarranged Marriage, The Crew and Rani and Sukh), Tanuja Desai Hidier (Born Confused) and Tony Bradman, editor of the short story anthology Skin Deep. See www.ncrcl.ac.uk for full programme and booking form.