Book Expo America 2014 – Highlights for Me (Part 1)

So last week I travelled to NYC for the biggest publishing industry event: Book Expo America (BEA).

I have attended the bloggers’ conference at BEA twice before, but this year decided to attend the actual BEA conference as well. It was exciting, but huge and overwhelming at the same time. I had planned to attend several sessions, especially those highlighting what was new and forthcoming in different genres, but I actually spent all my time in the exhibit halls, gathering info and books or waiting in lines to get a signed book from an author.

If you enjoy collecting book bags then BEA is the place for you! I only take things I really want, and I still ended up with five book bags. This is a picture of my favorite one:

10299005_10152156817828339_8290662918476011710_n bookbag

I was SO very excited to see the South Dakota State Historical Press at BEA as they are publishing Laura Ingalls Wilder’s original manuscript entitled “Pioneer Girl”. This is the memoir from whence the Little House books came. Now if you know me, you know that when I’m not obsessing over Louisa May Alcott, I’m obsessing over Laura Ingalls Wilder. I’ve been WAITING for “Pioneer Girl” to publish and it’s been a loooong wait. The gentleman in the booth said they are looking at this year at holiday time now. We had a nice chat about how when it does publish, perhaps it will put to bed these notions that Laura was not the author of the Little House books, but Rose was. Anyway, I can’t wait to get it! And this bag is so beautiful, too – the picture is the forthcoming cover of “Pioneer Girl”. (If you want to read more about the Pioneer Girl project, check out this site:

I received MANY wonderful books at BEA, but here’s a picture of some of my faves:


If you read me, you know I loved ORPHAN TRAIN and WE WERE LIARS. I was able to get paper copies of both signed by the authors – so exciting! I got a signed copy of MADAME TUSSAUD’S APPRENTICE, which I look forward to reading, too. My pick of the week, though, was CONVERSION. I really, really, REALLY want to read this book and have not been able to get it through my usual channels. Now I have a signed copy! And I will be starting it today.

The Wimpy Kid Planner was given out at the Children’s Author Breakfast, which I attended. Jeff Kinney was a great speaker – very funny as you would imagine. Mem Fox also spoke. I just love her (I’ve seen her before at Internat’l Reading). We got a copy of her BABY BEDTIME book. Carl Hiaasen spoke, and we received his new book, and the whole things was chaired by Jason Segel of Muppet Movie fame (he’s written a book for kids, too). It was a pretty fun time, though I had to hunt for two of the books as my table didn’t have them.

The day before I had attended the Adult Author Breakfast, which was chaired by Neil Patrick Harris. This was major for me as I’m a total theater nut. I was soooo excited to just be in the same room with NPH. His autobiography, which is based on a “choose your own adventure” – remember those?, is coming out in the fall. Angelica Huston spoke beautifully, too, about her life and her memoirs (which was apparently given to attendees, though my table didn’t have it — boo!). I have to say, though, that I really enjoyed Tavis Smiley, the NPR host and PBS show host, most of all as he talked about his life and Dr. Martin Luther King and his new book on him (which we received). Tavis was such an engaging speaker; I just loved him. I missed the last speaker, Lisa Scottoline.

As you can imagine, between the amazing books and authors and all the things to see in the exhibit halls, I was a bit overwhelmed in the two days I was at BEA!

My next post will follow up on the Bloggers’ Conference and what we discussed there, books we received, new friends, etc.