105 Ways to Give a Book

Book Expo America: Part III

The Random House cocktail party was Thursday night and Liz Burns was taking me as her guest. Because she is the best roommate ever. We didn't know what it would be like, but it was certainly a good sign when we saw that that party had taken over the whole restaurant of A Voce at Columbus Circle. And then there was an actual sign that was also a good sign for the evening.

I mean, right? This was a great group of authors, and the Random House staff couldn't have been nicer about facilitating the meetings. And in case you needed some fortitude, the wine was flowing. Liz and I were there for only a few minutes when we were introduced to Nicola Yoon who is releasing her first novel, Everything Everything, about a girl who is allergic to everything. We had a nice conversation and even got copies of the book, which wasn't even like part of the deal. I only had to stand around Marc Brown with an awe-struck look in my eyes, before someone helpfully introduced me. I didn't know what to say to a children's literature icon, so I think I went with the weather. I feel like I mentioned libraries and thanked him for being an icon, or something like that. I can't say that it was my best.

Before things got too busy, Liz and I both wanted to chat with Rebecca Stead. Of course, because she's awesome, but also because we both had known her before her first book came out. So it's always fun to check in with your friends who are now amazing, award-winning authors. We also got her new book, Goodbye Stranger - and there were only like five copies on the table, so go us. Our selfie was ridiculous, so fortunately someone took this photo for us instead.

We split up to mix and mingle. I made sure to meet every one of the authors, like I was getting a prize. I also made sure to get some of the light food and most of the tiny cheesecakes that came my way.

Julianna Moore was there for her Freckleface Strawberry series and I had to put my celebrity author issue on hold for the night, because it was Julianna Moore and she was right there. I talked to Tad Hills about his new Rocket book and his last visit to Virginia. Very nice guy. One of my favorite conversations of the night was with Bob Shea and Jory Johns. I had great success in my library storytimes with each of their books - Don't Play with Your Food and Goodnight Already! - and it was fun to be able to share that. We also talked about humor for kids, the value of art and theatre, the importance of good design, and fart jokes. Now I'm looking forward to their book, I Will Chomp You.

The event was over too quickly, but we both were so happy to have been there. Our hotel was only a short walk away and we picked up the world's tiniest cupcakes to top off our night - mostly because only in New York could you have an entire store devoted to bite-size desserts.

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tanita✿davis said...

Doesn't RH have the BEST events? If I do say so (completely biased in favor of my publishing house) self. They're always short - but perfectly executed.

I spend my time at these events standing in corners staring at icons going, "Ooooh!" and not speaking to them. You sound like you're much more coherent than me... I wish you were going to be at ALA so I could hide behind you.

MotherReader said...

I wish I could go wish you to ALA! I am an excellent wingman - or frontman, or whatever it's called. The secret is that I feel no shame until much later, but by then it's too late so I keep doing it. ;)