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Upcoming NYC Bookish Events!

9 May

As most of you know, Book Expo American is coming up later this month! For everyone else, there are still plenty of fun local area events and signings you can attend:

May 16th at Books of Wonder:
Andrea Cremer and David Levithan signing “Invisibility”!
6-8pm

May 16th at The Strand:
OK Cupid Book Swap for Passionate (single) readers. 7pm.
More info here.

May 20th at Books of Wonder:
YA ICONS TOUR, Featuring Margaret Stohl, Gayle Foreman, Tanya Hurley and Barry Lyga!
6-8pm

I’ll be at both Books of Wonder events (along with a few off-site events during BEA, like the S&S Teen Blogger Preview). If you see me, be sure to say hello! 🙂

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Insurgent Release Day: Veronica Roth in NYC!

24 May

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One of my favorite YA authors, Veronica Roth *finally* made it to NYC earlier this month to promote the release of her new book Insurgent. Book 2 in the Divergent trilogy. If you’ve been living under a rock, and somehow haven’t ready Divergent yet— go buy it asap! It is one of the best, most absorbing dystopian novels I’ve ever read. It *gasp* may even be better than The Hunger Games!

It’s hard to really review Insurgent without spoiling major plot elements from both it, and its predecessor. But suffice to say, it was even better than book 1. Veronica Roth really understands the motivations and psychology behind ALL of her characters, something I find some authors to really struggle with. Every single person in her books if a fully fleshed-out, realistic character. And she also gave the reasonings and rationale behind the basis for every faction.

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Quite a few people turned out for the release day signing, at Barnes and Noble Tribeca. Veronica read from one of the earlier scenes in Insurgent, then did a short Q&A with the audience before beginning the signing.

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Getting excited about an audience question

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About to sign

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Veronica meeting her fans!

If you get a chance to catch Veronica on her tour–take it! I hear she may be at BEA 2012 too. Her interaction with the audience was candid, informative, and brutally honest about all things Tris, Divergent, and even a little about her personal struggles as an author, and human being.

I gave Insurgent 5/5 STARS. And Veronica 5 stars as well. 😉

NYC Teen Author Festival

12 May

Last month, one of my favorite NYC bookish events returned for it’s annual appearance! The NYC Teen Author Festival.

It was a busy work week for me, with back to back photo shoots mixed in with author panels. But I managed to catch a group of authors at a NYPL panel, and the “finale” Mega-Signing at Books of Wonder!

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Elizabeth Eulberg, Tara Altebrando, Jenny Han, and Stephanie Perkins at the NYPL.

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Stephanie Perkins.

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Sarah Mlynowski.

At Sunday’s mega-signing, there were almost too many authors to count! I hauled a giant grocery tote full of books half-way across NYC to have signed by those appearing.

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The always amazing Gayle Forman.

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Jocelyn Davies and Anna Carey.

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Kim Harrington.

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Stephanie Perkins! Who I took a million photos of, because 1. She is adorable and SO BRIGHT. And 2. She’s awesome.

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LOLA

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“Fixing” a book for a fan who purchased a book from Barnes and Noble, already signed to some random dude!

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Another great redhead: Andrea Cremer!

The funky lighting in Books of Wonder made a few of the authors rather “glowy”.

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Barry Lyga.

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David Levithan.

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Jenny Han.

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Corey Whaley and Jennifer E. Smith, with Mitali in the middle!

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Jon Skovron with his awesome book, Misfit! (One of my 2011 faves.)

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Jeri Smith-Ready

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Melissa de la Cruz, who signed every.single. Blue Bloods book for me! –Ok, except the 2 I’d already had signed. 😉

We snagged Stephanie again after the signing for some fun portraits:

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Michelle, Stephanie, and Bethany.

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Me and Stephanie

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Getting goofy!

See the full photo set here.

And my 2011 TAF post here.

Amy Plum’s “Until I Die” Book Release Party

8 May

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On May 8, NYC’s Books of Wonder hosted a launch party for Amy Plum’s second book in the Revenants series, “Until I Die”. She was joined by local authors Jocelyn Davies, and Kristi Cook, along with plenty of macarons, and European candies to complement the evening’s Paris theme.

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The lighting in BOW leaves a bit to be desired, but they are there, I promise! 😉

Amy read a selection from her new book, and spoke a bit about the world of the Revenants. Followed by more book discussions from Jocelyn and Kristi. All 3 are lovely women, and amazing authors that I highly recommend catching in person if they come to your town.

In fact, I missed Amy in 2011 after a transportation snafu, but was excited to finally meet her during her second book tour trip to NYC. Amy was actually one of the very first authors I ever interacted with on twitter, back when I first started this blog!

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Macarons! They were delicious.

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Amy and I. Finally, we meet!

I haven’t had a chance to read Until I Die yet, but I’m hearing it’s even better than Die For Me. I can’t wait to check it out!

All Photos and Content ®2012 Rachel Scroggins

Asylum Blog Tour: Guest Post Featuring Author KA Tucker

8 Jan

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Welcome to today’s stop on the Asylum blog tour! Author KA Tucker has written a lovely guest post delving deeper into the magic system used in her intriguing, heart-pounding paranormal series. I’m also happy to announce the winner of the print copy of Asylum! Read on to find out more, and be sure to enter to win an e-book copy of Asylum too!

My question for the guest post:
How did you invent a whole original world with unique magic rules and formats, as opposed to earth and wicca-based magics like many authors use?

Well, as with everything else in this series, I like to take basic concepts and twist them into something that I can stamp my own fingerprint on. In this series, the common concept of spells and gifted individuals holds true, as well as the idea that it’s a skill one must learn vs. just ‘knowing how’.

I began with these basic concepts in my own magical world and then I took it further, adding twists and turns. For one, my own vision of magic is that there are ‘small spells and big spells” requiring different level of skill and power. Just as humans have different skills and strength, so should sorceresses and sorcerers.

It wouldn’t be fun if all witches were created equally. Most sorceresses can learn the ‘small spells’ -starting fires and disguising themselves – without too much trouble. But a whole different level of skill and strength is required for the big spells – the ones that change the course of fate .

These are the Causal Enchantments – the spells that are driven by a deep-seeded need or desire. Enter the Fates – the God-like beings with power to alter the future. The Fates have no limitations and no boundaries. They truly are God-like. Wait, actually, that’s not true. They do have one boundary. But I’m not telling you what it is… yet.

When I was developing this part of the plot – the idea of the Fates – it made sense to me that Causal Enchantments couldn’t be granted without some sort of drawback, a negative to gaining whatever ‘wish’ the sorceress or sorcerer has asked of them. It also made sense to me that the Fates weren’t your typical fairy godmothers, happily waving their magic wands.

They needed to be a bit vindictive, a tad… evil. I’ve provided only small hints about the Fates in the first two books and I don’t want to say too much more other than to say that in the third book, you will learn A LOT about them.

The other major unique piece to Causal Enchantment’s magic system is the idea that magic has some sort of formation. To me, there needed to be something beyond just a bunch of words – a chant – to spark a spell.

If the sorceress held the magic within them, it only made sense that they needed to call on it somehow. When I imagined what magic would look like in its physical form, glowing pinkish purple DNA-like helixes was the first thing I pictured. Hence this is what Sofie plucks from within her body.

There are many other elements to this magic – how Causal Enchantments are delivered to the caster, how new types of magic can materialize (like ‘the Tribe’), and how a highly-skilled sorceress like Sofie can experiment to create her own spells – that make this magical world its own. All of these elements came about as the plot was developed, as ideas were formed, and solutions to problems brainstormed.

I wanted to ‘think outside the box’ but more importantly, I wanted to have fun with it. I definitely succeeded with that!

I’m not sure if the above explains anything or made it more complicated … LOL… it’s tough to explain the ‘why’ and ‘how’, other than to say that I knew what I wanted to begin with and I let the story take the magic where it needed to go. A unique world came out of that.

Thanks, Rachel, for having me here today!

Thanks to all who have already picked up a copy of Anathema and Asylum! For those who haven’t yet,
Anathema is currently free on Kindle, Nook, Sony, Apple, and Smashwords so grab your copy today! If
you enjoy it, Asylum is only $2.99

As for the print copy: the winner is…. JONELLE DYER!!! CONGRATULATIONS!!

Don’t forget to enter the Asylum giveaway here.

See the other blogs on the tour here.
And stop by again tomorrow for my review of Asylum!

Maureen Johnson’s Name of the Star Publication Party

4 Oct

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Last week, Books of Wonder in NYC hosted what has to be one of the most interesting and entertaining book signings I’ve been to yet for Maureen Johnson’s new YA novel “The Name of the Star”.

A huge crowd of fans waited for Maureen’s arrival, while two “Jack the Ripper” impersonators roamed around and scared audience members.

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There were plenty of awesome buttons for “survivors” of the event to wear.

After a short wait, Maureen finally emerged to a cheering crowd, and entertained us with tales of Ripper research in London, her writing process, and how she’s always shocked when people actually READ the stories that come out of her head. Like magic!

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After the somewhat crazy and incredibly lively Q&A, Maureen began to sign. The line was quite long, so fellow book blogger Bethany and I decided to indulge in some cupcakes and wine (which, at least for me, was a Books of Wonder first). There is just something *naughty* about drinking wine in a children’s book store.

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We all know what wine looks like. These cupcakes were much prettier.

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Not pretty: the table “decorations”.

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More pretty.

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Maureen signing.

By the time it was my turn to meet Maureen, I was slightly tipsy, and remembered why I don’t usually have wine (and sugar!) before dinner. Or at public events. Pretty sure I mumbled something about how her “rambling, Mean Girls word vomit style stream of consciousness speeches make me feel better about my own propensity to talk too much made me feel as if I’d met a kindred spirit” scared her.

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And then someone took a very blurry photo of us together.

Luckily, I learned a long time ago, there is always someone weirder or more intense than you in the audience. Case in point: this dude, who had Maureen sign his forehead.
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Awesome. But weird.

After much more book talk, and a very in depth discussion about Game of Thrones with some new bookish friends, Bethany and I realized the store was about to close, so it was time to go home. We took the conversation outside, and ended up looking like creepy stalkers who were waiting for Maureen, probably scaring her once again. But I feel like if any author would understand this, it would be her.

The Name of the Star is out now, in bookstores everywhere.

®2011 Bookshelf Lust

Kimberly Derting, Lisa Schroeder, Adele Griffin, and Laurie Faria Stolarz at Books of Wonder

5 Jul

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At Books of Wonder, 6/30/11.

Last week, before the holiday madness began, I was able to stop by Books of Wonder to meet a quartet of amazing teen authors.

I had a photo shoot beforehand, which ended up running over time wise making me quite late. And left me without anything to get signed! Sadly, my books were left at home. But I did get some amazing photos, and had a chance to chat with each author about their books, and visit with some fellow blogger friends!

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I told Laurie her “Nightmares” series was one of the very first books/series I bought with my employee discount when I first moved to NYC and worked at Barnes and Noble! She gave me some signed book-plates to put into my forgotten books.

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Laurie chatting with a fan.

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Laurie and Frankie

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Lisa

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I was very upset that my copy of Tighter (which I loved!) was sitting on my bed at home, and not in my hands to be signed by Adele.

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Adele

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Kimberly. We had an awesome conversation about The Pledge, and how much we both love Target!

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The Body Finder goodies.

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Some of the prettiest bookmarks I’ve ever seen!

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Me, Rachael, and Frankie. (Photo via Frankie’s Facebook)

Even though I missed 3/4 of the event, I still had a blast! All of the authors were amazing, as usual. And it was great catching up with some bloggers I hadn’t seen since BEA. It’s pretty awesome how many great authors have made it to Books of Wonder this summer. Hoping there are still many more to come!

All Photos and Content ®2011 Rachel Scroggins/Bookshelf Lust.

Stephanie Perkins NYC Meet & Greet

12 Jun

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Saturday, on what would have been just a boring and disgusting rainy day in NYC, I went to one of the best author/blogger events I have ever been to!

I started my weekend pretty bummed out about missing one of my other favorite author’s only nearby US appearance, due to transportation issues. It’s not always easy to get outside of the city when you’re car-less, and trains can get costly and complicated. Thankfully, there was still some hope left for my Saturday!

I’d read on twitter the day before that “Anna and the French Kiss” author Stephanie Perkins was coming to NYC, and would be having a meet and greet with fans uptown. So roomie Jenn and I made the rainy trek up to Bryant Park to meet up with Stephanie, and some fellow blogger friends of mine.

The park was out, so after wandering around a bit, we found a local Cafe with a large basement seating area to hang out in. A few fans drifted in and out, but total there were around 15 of us. It made for quite an intimate gathering, and we were able to ask Steph about her books, characters, future projects, and her writing process.

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3/4 of our group.

Stephanie is absolutely adorable in person. If you like her quirky, fun characters, after meeting her in real life, you will fall in love with her even more. She’s very big on hugs, and has a contagious, goofy laugh. Chatting with her feels like catching up with an old friend.

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We learned that she is in NYC doing research for “Isla and the Happily Ever After”, her 2012 release. Nothing has been officially announced about her next project after Isla, but she did say that she has an idea already planned, and whatever she writes will most likely be a stand alone novel.

That revelation earned quite a few satisfied comments from those of us in attendance. EVERYONE agreed that sometimes, there are just too many series in the YA world, and that stand alone novels are highly missed.

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We also got to hear about how meticulously researched the world-building in her books are. She was still working as a librarian while writing “Anna”. So Stephanie said she checked out every single fiction, non-fiction, comic, and children’s book she could find about France. She also watched every French film she could get her hands on, and analyzed things as detailed as what went on in the background scenes behind the actors to find out how the French lived their lives.

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Rachael’s coveted copy of Lola and the Boy Next Door. We all wanted to steal it from her! (Lola takes place in San Francisco, where Stephanie went to college.)

One of my favorite moments of the day: a fellow attendee compared Steph’s work to Jane Austen. You should have seen her face! She was shocked, but I have to say that I think the comparison is spot on. I can’t think of any other contemporary YA writers who capture the same feel of Jane’s work, yet also modernize a story in their own way. One of the reasons I love Stephanie’s writing so much is because it feels so REAL. I can imagine saying and doing the same exact things her characters do were I in their situations.

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Me clutching one of my most anticipated 2011 reads! It was really hard not to pet this book.

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After our big group discussion, Stephanie took time to sign our books, and chat with everyone individually. A few of us posed for photos with her as well.

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Steph and some new friends!

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Signing books.

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Talking with roomie Jenn. They have a TON of mutual friends, from the Harry Potter fandom and Wizard Wrock worlds.

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Steph and Damaris.

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With Mitali.

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Steph & Jenn again.

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Me and Steph. She’s so cute! And I look like a total nutter here. Thanks,rainy weather!

We had a brief chat about her bff Kiersten White’s “Supernaturally“, (which I’m reading now) and whispered about how awesome her favorite character in that book is.

Soon, it was time for Steph to go meet up with a friend. So we all said our goodbyes, and thanked her for an awesome time! Seriously, I don’t know many authors who would set up a spontaneous meet and greet with their fans during a whirlwind, last-minute book research trip. 😉
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Before she left, I photographed Steph’s crazy cool outfit for one of the fashion websites I shoot for. I’ll definitely be posting a link/photos once this week’s street style goes live on their site.

Thanks again to Stephanie for totally making my weekend, and making time for all of your fans. You were beyond awesome, and I hope some day soon you can make it up to NYC again! I had so much fun meeting you, and making some new blogger and publishing friends. ❤

And to everyone else: If Stephanie comes to your town this year, GO!

All Photos ®2011 Rachel Scroggins/Bookshelf Lust.
See the full album here.

BEA Recap: Day Three

4 Jun

On Wednesday, the second official show day of Book Expo, I arrived right on the expo floor right in time for the doors to open. Suddenly, the people around me were running in every direction, and I had no clue what was going on. I decided to head over to the booth’s of some of my favorite YA publishers, and see what ARC’s they had available. I did not know on Tuesday, that the morning “rush” is when most ARC’s are actually handed out.

I now understand why crazy people run to their favorite booths. I dashed from booth to booth, and found many books that I had on my BEA wishlist. By 9:30am, my grocery tote was nearly full of books (something it’d taken me hours to do on Tuesday). At some point, I met up with Lindsi, and we continued our book quest, until I lost her again.

But not before we met Lauren Kate, who was doing an in-booth signing of Passion:
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Lauren was very sweet.

I ended up skipping the lines to meet Lauren Oliver, and Ally Condie, because they were insane. I found a copy of Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, one of my “must haves” right away, so I grabbed one in case they ran out before her signing at 10:30am. The line moved quickly (or at least it did where I was–relatively close to the front). Laini was so cute, and seemed really excited to be meeting so many of her fans.
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Laini Taylor and her awesome pink hair.

After Laini, I dashed back to the autographing area to get in line for Melissa Marr.
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Melissa with Casey.

I finally got a copy of Graveminder, which I’d been waiting forever for. But of course, not until after I stood in a massive line. Not sure if it was the crazy line, or just general BEA fatigue, but Melissa seemed tired.

Next I met Joceyln Davies, author of A Beautiful Dark, but it happened so fast, I can barely recall any details.

After hearing horror stories of Tuesday’s signing at the Harlequin booth I met Lindsi and Casey in line twenty minutes early for the multi-author Harlequin Teen event. According to multiple reports, a blogger and her friends blockaded the table and were stealing books out of people’s hands at Rachel Vincent’s signing for Blood Bound! And yes before someone asks, I was told the name of the blogger who was responsible. Thankfully, I’ve never met or spoken to her, or I’d be embarrassed to be her friend.

The Harlequin line quickly grew crazy, making me glad I’d decided to head there early.

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While we were waiting, we discovered the cover for Goddess Interrupted!

And right before that, in the comic book area, I saw a wall of comic book ads that included Richelle Mead’s Dark Swan series:
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Julie Kagawa, Kady Cross, Gena Showalter, and Maria V. Snyder were all signing. Not surprisingly, all four turned out to be incredibly nice authors! Here’s Julie signing copies of Iron Queen:

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After the signing, I was finally able to grab some lunch downstairs at Javits. Downstairs, one of the most inexpensive options was pizza. While I was waiting in line, the woman in front of me complimented me on my eye makeup. We started talking, and then I noticed her name tag: Sarah Beth Durst! I told her I was a fan, and saw her upcoming book in the Fall preview slide show, “Drink,Slay,Love” the day before at the Simon and Schuster preview. So she gave me a bookmark!

I had some time to kill, so I went straight over to Penguin to get in line for Eoin Colfer’s new adult mystery novel, Plugged. The line was long, but moved pretty fast. Books were handed out before we reached Mr. Colfer, so it was nice to for once, stand in a long line, yet still be assured I would receive a signed book.

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Plugged.

My last few signings of the day were over in the Random House area. I arrived early once again, so I got in line to meet James Dashner, and got a signed excerpt of the new Maze Runner book “The Death Cure”. I told James I hadn’t read the series yet, but had it on my TBR for ages. He joked that I was smart for waiting until all three books were out!

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James Dashner.

I found Lindsi and Casey again, sitting on the floor behind Random House, waiting for Erin Morgenstern’s “Night Circus” signing to begin. The line was long (EVERYONE seemed to be talking about how amazing this book is!), but once again, moved quickly. Which worked out for me, because my next and last event was Chuck Palahniuk’s signing for “Damned” about ten feet away. Chuck being Chuck, the line was insane. People began to line up over an hour and a half early. Since I couldn’t wait in both the Night Circus line, and Chuck’s at the same time, despite their proximity, I got stuck somewhere about 60 feet away from the front.

I had to leave for a work appointment at 5:15pm, and before I knew it, it was 4:40 and the line had only moved 10 feet. Chuck is amazing, and very personable, so he was chatting at length and posing for multiple photos with fans.

Unfortunately, BEA is just not the right venue for The other attendees in line around me began grumbling that we were at a trade show–not comic con, and I started worrying that I’d miss my appointment and/or the signing would be stopped when the exhibit floor closed at 5.

I ended up having to give up, grab my roommate to stand in line for me, and leave the show. I spoke to Chuck’s publicist on my way out about fan’s being upset about the line congestion and length. And snapped a quick photo:
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Chuck!

I was told that after I left, the line moved much faster. Luckily, thanks to Jenn, I still got my signed book. After my quick work meeting, I skipped out on a publishing event to go home and crash. I could barely walk with my overstuffed suitcase, and was completely exhausted. I need to pack for Jamaica (I didn’t), and was planning on attending the evening’s blogger dinner meetup.

I got to the dinner, held at Dallas BBQ in Chelsea, and hosted by Damaris and Yara a bit late, but still had an amazing time making new blogger friends, and a socializing with a handful of authors. Also, Dallas BBQ has amazing inexpensive frozen margaritas!

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Half of the bloggers from Reading Teen!

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The evening’s hosts, and author guests .

Somewhere, I have a photo that I am actually in, but I will have to find it and edit it in later. 🙂

The dinner was a blast, but I was so sad to say goodbye to everyone. Wednesday was my last day at BEA, and I was completely exhausted. I thought before that I could get up early, attend the show for an hour or two, and then leave for the airport Thursday afternoon, but there was just no way. After the dinner, I went home, pet my new books again and took way too many photos of them, and started my preliminary packing.

In the end, this was my final BEA haul:

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Not pictured: a few books I gave away to friends, and a few accidental repeats. All in all, thanks to the efforts of my roommate, my friends, and myself, I received 108 books.

I am so thankful for everything I received, and busted my ass to get. But I am also now completely and utterly TERRIFIED of my TBR pile. And before anything says anything about the sheer number of books I got (I seem to have the largest pile so far, out of my friends) YES I plan on reading all of these books. Anything that I change my mind about will go to either family members (there is a book on fonts calling my Mother’s name), or blogger friends who will review them.

As a newer blogger, I just recently started to receive ARC copies for review. So like I said, I am beyond thankful that I was able to meet so many amazing publicity and marketing folks, and get so many wonderful books. Every book on this table, with the exception of 10 or so my roommate picked up for me unexpectedly was on a meticulously researched list of books I wanted from BEA. I planned nearly every minute of my two days on the show floor–and it paid off!

So thank you to everyone I met. I’m sure I forgot a lot of your names, but everyone was truly awesome. And thanks to everyone who helped me have such an amazing first year at BEA! Be sure to stay tuned for my final BEA recap post, where I discuss everything good and bad about my experience. 🙂

BEA Recap: Day Two

2 Jun

I started my second day of BEA by breaking the cardinal rule of attending book expo: don’t be late. My roommate Jenn (a media publicist) and I both seemed to have trouble getting out of the apt. that morning, and also vastly underestimated the length of time it would take to get us from the subway to Javits Center on the far west side of Manhattan.

And: it was HOT. And very humid.

By the time we did walk in to Javits around 9:20am, I already felt dead. But I sucked it up, and after waiting in a very tiny line for our passes, dashed over to the first signing on my list– Jeri Smith Ready. Sadly, there were only 40 or so books available, so I definitely missed getting a signed copy of Shift. Having met Jeri the night before, I didn’t feel too badly, so my next stop was Scott Tracey’s signing for Witch Eyes. I was really excited to pick up a copy after hearing so much discussion of his book on twitter.

Along with roomie Jenn, I ended up hanging out with Lindsi of Books, Sweets and Other Treats in the signing lines. Apparently a crazy older woman actually BIT Lindsi in the arm when she reached past her for a book that AM—an event that would later reach BEA Urban Legend status. (Edit: You can read her account of the incident here.)

Lindsi was shaken by the experience, but appeared rabies-free, so we decided to hang out while we waited for signings to begin. Together, we made an awesome team, and were able to get each other books we would have otherwise missed out on. At one point, running around Javits, we met this bookish Piggie:
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Shortly after we met Melissa de la Cruz (signing Bloody Valentine and Witches of East End), who remembered my blog from the very early “Most Wanted Books of 2011” post I had written about Witches. I’ve met her twice now, and each time Melissa is completely and utterly awesome. She also has the honor of being one of my longest read YA authors (second only to LJ Smith)–I’ve been a fan of hers since the second Au Pairs book!

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Melissa De la Cruz.

After Melissa’s signing, we double teamed the lines of Alma Katsu (The Taker), Claudia Gray (Fateful), Trinity Faegen (The Mephisto Covenant, one of my most highly anticipated YA reads of BEA), and Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Trial by Fire). After, Jenn went back to continue her half day of work, and Lindsi headed to some other signings. I stopped by the Harlequin booth to meet Rachel Vincent. The lines were a bit hectic, but I managed to snag a copy of “If I Die”, and have Rachel sign it. Along with one other similarly named blogger friend in front of me, we all had a nice discussion about the proper way to spell Rachel:

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At some other point that afternoon, I met Trinity Faegen, Jana Oliver, and Jeri Smith Ready again:
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R-L:Trinity, Jana, and Jeri.

I attempted to grab lunch in my downtime, but due to a major Javits FAIL, I wasn’t able to eat. Turns out the entire convention center had lost the use of their credit/debit card network, leaving many attendees unable to purchase food. I was actually chastised by a cashier for not bringing cash, which as a New Yorker, I can say is completely ridiculous. So I continued on, scarfing the only food I had brought with me: a banana, and some peanut butter crackers. Little did I know, I wouldn’t be eating lunch at all that day.

After my lunch disaster, tired, and hungry, I got in line early the Tahereh Mafi signing line for Shatter Me. Which was a good decision, because that line ended up being huge. Tahereh was super nice (and more shy than she seems on twitter), so when I ended up randomly running into her at the Harper Collins booth later that day, she signed a second copy of her book for me to give Jenn, and inscribed it with a “Happy Birthday” message for her!

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Tahereh Mafi.

Post-Shatter Me, a small group of bloggers and I got in line at the Penguin booth for Richelle Mead’s Bloodlines signing later that afternoon. We seemed to be blocking the show floor and the current signing line, so a Penguin employee handed out numbered cards, and told us to come back about an hour and a half later for what was sure to be the biggest YA signing of the day.

As expected, things did not go as smoothly as planned.

People were confused by the number system. People got in line where they didn’t belong. And bloggers were told the number system was “canceled” and the line was a free for all.  Luckily, a smart publicist did a last-minute line organization, so we all managed to get back in line close to our original numbers, and meet Richelle. I feel incredibly lucky to have had the chance to meet her a second time. Since Richelle is 5 or 6 months pregnant, I was surprised she even came to BEA! She was amazing, as always, and we had a brief chat about how busy she was going to be around the end of August. (She has I believe 2 books, a graphic novel, and the baby due all within a week!)

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Richelle Mead.

After scoring both Bloodlines and Shatter Me, I was pretty confident in my author meeting and book procuring abilities. I only had one other “must have” book left to get Wednesday morning.

I got in line to meet Kiki Hamilton, author of The Faerie Ring, but sadly the books ran out 3 people in front of me –after a BEA volunteer had counted out the number of people in line and told me I’d be the last person to receive one. I was sad, but got over it. I did manage to get Leigh Fallon’s Carrier of the Mark, another book high on my want list, so that pretty much made up for missing out on Faerie Ring. One last stop at Jeff Hirsch’s line for The Eleventh Plague (a highly anticipated post-apocalyptic YA novel), and we were done with day one!

Kind of.

Lindsi, and her hotel roommates Casey, Farrah, and Britney needed to go to the post office, so we hopped on the cross-town bus with our massive suitcases (much to the chagrin of the other passengers), and headed to the giant 34th street USPS location. It ended up being much much cheaper than shipping at Javits, but took forever. I sat outside on the steps and got some sun while I waited, and ended up meeting a woman who works as book reviewer & writer for a Canadian newspaper—who has been going to BEA for 20 years! It was insane hearing the stories she had to tell about past conventions.

After all of day 1’s books were securely shipped off, our group headed to Chelsea to one of my favorite cafe’s, Grey Dog. It felt absolutely amazing to sit down, and finally eat some food. Not only is Grey Dog super yummy, but it’s pretty laid back, which was just what we needed after a long day running around like crazy people doing bookish things.

Finally, I made it home. Where I did not go to bed early (mistake!), and instead pet my new books, and read more of an old one. Other than a few books I missed out on, I had a very successful first day on the show floor. And felt like I was slowly learning what not to do on day 2. Check back tomorrow for that story!

I will leave you with this crazy photo. The end of day 2 book pile, featuring books from Monday and Tuesday:
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