Saturday Snapshot: US Open Tennis

Before we met, my husband attended the US Open every year. Things have been a bit trickier since getting married and having children, but this year all four of us went with friends. It was a great day!

Because we bought our tickets far in advance, we didn’t know who we would be seeing. I think we lucked out!

We saw Venus Williams play and win:

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We saw Djokovic play and win,too:

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We also had fun playing “virtual tennis” against Maria Sharapova:

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It was a fun day!

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Melinda at westmetromommyreads.com. See her site for participation details and lots of other fun Saturday Snapshot moments!

One more from BEA – Young Adult Buzz Titles

I almost forgot! Along with the Middle Grade Buzz session, there is a Young Adult Buzz session at BEA. I did not attend this year as I was in line to meet Alice Hoffman (yeah!!). However, the program has the list of titles/authors.

According to the industry, these are the ones to watch for in YA this fall:

Dream Things True: A Novel by Marie Marquardt (9/1 release)

downloadDREAM2

Synopsis from Amazon:

Evan and Alma have spent fifteen years living in the same town, connected in a dozen different ways but also living worlds apart — until the day he jumps into her dad’s truck and slams on the brakes.
The nephew of a senator, Evan seems to have it all – except a functional family. Alma has lived in Georgia since she was two, surrounded by a large (sometimes smothering) Mexican family. They both want out of this town. His one-way ticket is soccer; hers is academic success.

When they fall in love, they fall hard, trying to ignore their differences. Then Immigration and Customs Enforcement begins raids in their town, and Alma knows that she needs to share her secret. But how will she tell her country-club boyfriend that she and almost everyone she’s close to are undocumented immigrants?

What follows is a beautiful, nuanced exploration of the complications of immigration, young love, defying one’s family, and facing a tangled bureaucracy that threatens to completely upend two young lives. This page-turning debut asks tough questions, reminding us that love is more powerful than fear.

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (9/1 release)

downloadEVERYTHING

Synopsis from Amazon:

This innovative, heartfelt debut novel tells the story of a girl who’s literally allergic to the outside world. When a new family moves in next door, she begins a complicated romance that challenges everything she’s ever known. The narrative unfolds via vignettes, diary entries, texts, charts, lists, illustrations, and more.

My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.

Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.

Nightfall by Jake Halpern and Peter Kujawinski (9/22 release)

downloadNIGHTFALL

Synopsis from Amazon:

A story where edge-of-your-seat horror meets post-apocalyptic thriller, perfect for fans of Lois Lowry and The Mazerunner

On Marin’s island, sunrise doesn’t come every twenty-four hours—it comes every twenty-eight years. Now the sun is just a sliver of light on the horizon. The weather is turning cold and the shadows are growing long.

Because sunset triggers the tide to roll out hundreds of miles, the islanders are frantically preparing to sail south, where they will wait out the long Night.

Marin and her twin brother, Kana, help their anxious parents ready the house for departure. Locks must be taken off doors. Furniture must be arranged. Tables must be set. The rituals are puzzling—bizarre, even—but none of the adults in town will discuss why it has to be done this way.

Just as the ships are about to sail, a teenage boy goes missing—the twins’ friend Line. Marin and  Kana are the only ones who know the truth about where Line’s gone, and the only way to rescue him is by doing it themselves. But Night is falling. Their island is changing.

And it may already be too late.

The Life and Death of Zebulon Finch by Daniel Kraus (10/27 release)

downloadZEBULON

Synopsis from Amazon:

A murdered teen is resurrected to walk the earth for centuries in this sweeping historical epic in the spirit of The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, from the author of Rotters and Scowler.

Twenty minutes after his murder on the shores of Lake Michigan in 1896, seventeen-year-old Zebulon Finch awakens, resurrected to suffer an eternity upon the planet. But of all people…why him?

Is it because he was a violent Chicago gangster and this is his chance at redemption?

Is it because he is a modern-day Job whose suffering is beyond human comprehension?

Over the next century—or two—he will try to find out. With a sly aristocratic voice and a healthy appetite for women and anarchy, Zebulon Finch spins a tale of his travels across a young America, watching the country grow and mature, knowing that his mind and body will never do the same.

Yes, he is witty. He is also vain. Absolutely brilliant, too. And he is always entertaining. But have no doubt—Zebulon Finch has a heart as vulnerable as anyone’s. Too bad he doesn’t learn to use it till after it has stopped beating…

This Raging Light by Estelle Laure (releasing 12/22)

downloadLIGHT

Synopsis from Amazon:

Can the best thing happen at the worst time?

Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she’s about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend’s brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure’s soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page.

BEA “Buzz Authors” for Middle Grade Fiction

One great thing about the Book Expo is that you can find out what the “hot” titles are that are forthcoming. This year I stumbled into this session late (couldn’t find it) and they were just finishing talking about the first title. A young man from Scholastic was giving a heartfelt entreaty for folks to read and love and support their upcoming release of GEORGE. Here are the books that were cited as the ones to watch – they all release in August or September:

George by Alex Gino – about a young boy who knows he’s really a girl and wants to play Charlotte in the school play of “Charlotte’s Web”.

Last in a Long Line of Rebels by Lisa Lewis Tyre – about a spunky young girl who seeks to save her Civil War era home.

The Doldrums  by Nicholas Gannon – about a young boy who goes on an adventure to save his grandparents who are stranded on an iceberg.

The Entirely True Story of the Unbelievable FIB by Adam Shaughnessy – first in a series about two friends having adventures in the world of Viking gods they discover under their town.

The Thing about Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin – about a young girl dealing with the death of her best friend.

When I came out of the session I found myself right in front of a table with EACH of these books on it as a free gift for us! I was able to get a copy of each and look forward to reading them.

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Some top picks from BEA15

Last week I went to part of the Book Expo in NYC. As always it was particularly awesome to meet some of my favorite authors and get their upcoming/new books.

While I got many wonderful reads (I limited myself to about two dozen this year), this picture shows the ones that I REALLY wanted to get and stood in line for, for what felt like ages:

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Publishing in October, Geraldine Brooks’ (People of the Book, March, etc.) new novel is about King David. Melanie Benjamin’s (The Aviator’s Wife) novel is about high society in NYC back in the day and the friendship between Truman Capote and Babe Paley (got to wait for this one until 1/2016). Charles Belfoure’s (The Paris Architect) new one is a mystery set in 1880’s New York. It publishes in September. Alice Hoffman’s (Nightbird, The Dovekeepers, etc.) new novel hits the shelves in August and is about the parents of artist Camille Pissarro.

All of this is SO very exciting! Plus I met each author (albeit briefly). Yeah!