Monday, June 4, 2007

BEA report (part I): Bounty

Half the fun of a big conference is picking up the giveaways. A book conference is better than any other, because instead of pens and pads and other doodads, you get books. Books that nobody else has read yet, because they aren't coming out until next year.

Here's the pile that we brought home (minus one or two that we left at my in-laws house). 21 books. Here's what we got:

  • The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World by E.L. Konigsburg. We waited in line about half an hour for this one, at the end of a long and tiring day. Tracy was a huge fan of From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, and then she read it aloud to our daughter. We're all excited to read this new book.
  • Rosie Little's Cautionary Tales for Girls by Danielle Wood
  • The Boy's Body Book (Everything You Need to Know for Growing up YOU) by Kelli Dunham
  • The Bee Tree by Stpehen Buchman and Diana Cohn, ill. by Paul Mirocha. This one comes at a good time, because my son's class just had a visit from a beekeeper.
  • Selavi: A Haitian Story of Hope by Youme
  • The Steep Approach to Garbadale by Iaian Banks. We got a couple promising books at the Macadam/Cage booth, who publish my friend Mark Dunn's Ella Minnow Pea, which is still in print, and a fantastically clever and fun book.
  • Are The Rich Necessary? by Hunter Lewis. I had to fill out a little survey to get this one, asking me if I thought the rich are necessary, and a few other gimme questions. I'm curious to see what he says (I'm guessing the answer is mostly, "no").
  • Do Me Twice by Sonsyrea Tate
  • Doubt by John Patrick Shanley
  • Dirty Story and Other Plays by John Patrick Shanley. Mr. Shanley happened to be at the TCG booth, signing copies. The TCG booth was small (smaller than the one my distributor/publisher had), and there wasn't really any line. I wished desperately that I'd seen Doubt when it came to town, but I hadn't, so I didn't really have anything intelligent to say, other than, "I'm a playwright, too. Congratulations on all the success of Doubt. It's great that it's done so well." And he signed my book, shook my hand, and said, "It's always a surprise when it works out." Just a reminder to us all, that even if you win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (2005), you still show up at conferences and sign books. There were a couple people behind us (though not much of a line). I wished I'd stayed and chatted longer.
  • Trail of Crumbs (Hunger, Love and the Search for Home) by Kim Sunee
  • A Valley of Betrayal by Tricia Goyer
  • Hallowmere: In the Serpent's Coils by Tiffany Trent
  • Seeing Redd by Frank Beddor
  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie. This is a YA novel that sounds pretty interesting.
  • Snakehead by Anthony Horowitz
  • Caspian Rain by Gina B. Nahai
  • Mirriam-Webster's Dictionary and Thesaurus. This one wasn't a gimme. The woman at the booth was only awarding them to people who successfully spelled a word from a list, a mini-spelling bee if you will. I'm proud to report that I spelled "penitentiary" without too much trouble.

It's a pile with something for everyone in our family, and I have hope that there will be a few pleasant surprises. Guess I'd better get reading.


Novel said...

Aren't conventions great? I have signed books from when my parents owned a bookstore when I was a child--Mercer Mayer for instance, Leonard Nimoy both dedicated to me on my 5th birthday. I hope your kids treasure theirs as well. I had no idea Konigsburg was still writing. I too loved the mixed up files.

patrick said...

Having your parents own a book store sounds incredibly ideal to me.

It's funny, my kids are used to knowing lots of writers, directors, and actors, as just a part of who is in our lives, so I don't think it seems unusual to them (or interesting).

Novel said...

It was pretty fun while it lasted. I had a lot of paperbacks without covers--including the All Creatures Great and Small as I recall.