Driving Andre Dubus III

June 17, 2009

What could possibly be better than hosting author Andre Dubus III in your bookstore? Getting to drive him around all day!

Let me just tell you, people, that if you weren’t there at his reading last night for Garden of Last Days, you wish you were. Not only is he one of the most articulate and well-read authors I’ve encountered, but he’s an absolute riot — funny, down to earth, and incredibly genuine. This is a man who said to everyone who brought a book to be signed, “Tell me your life story,” and meant it! He’s also the kind of person that makes you want to tell them things that are probably better off untold.

I should know — I spent pretty much the whole day with him, from the airport up to Park City, back to Salt Lake to the reading and then to his hotel afterwards — and let’s just say that some of the stuff we talked about? Yeah, you will never hear those stories. Unless he puts them in writing, in which case those aren’t about me.

You can get a little taste of what he’s like by listening to his interview with Doug Fabrizio on KUER’s Radio West or reading my interview with him. If you were at the event, share your favorite moments/thoughts in the comments!

Looking Forward, Looking Back

December 1, 2008

It’s December 1 — can that really be right? With the holiday craziness in full swing and New Year’s right around the corner, December is the month that (on the few days I’m not working the floor) I take stock of the past 11 months and start planning for the next 12. And the next 12 are, by all indications, going to be amazing!

We’ve already secured exciting authors, both renowned and new, for events in the coming year:

and a couple more that are still in the works, so I really can’t announce anything yet, but keep your fingers crossed!

And, of course, in the next two days we’ve got a bevvy of great local authors in the store signing:

I went back into my records and poked around for a while, and realized that we had 80 authors from January to November 2008 — not counting December or authorless events. 80 authors! I’d like to say something pithy here, but I’m still kind of reeling from that discovery. I can’t even begin to assemble a highlights reel for you. Maybe later this week I will come out of it and have something interesting to say, but, for now, the resounding word is “wow.”

Happy Birthday to Us

September 10, 2008

It’s TKE’s 31st Birthday! And not only that, it’s also the one year anniversary of my hiring. Hard to believe, isn’t it? So I thought, in honor of the day, I’d do a little retrospective on the highlights of my first couple of months at TKE:

  • Our 30th Birthday with Diane Ackerman, September 10, 2007: This was the first event I worked at TKE — talk about a whirlwind! As exciting as it was to come into the store during its 30th year of business (buy local!), it was even more exciting to meet one of my favorite nonfiction authors of all time. Not only was it fantastic to meet her and hear her talk about The Zookeeper’s Wife, but I literally got chills when she was nice enough to sign and personalize my very dog-eared copy of A Natural History of the Senses.
  • Pam Munoz Ryan came, September 17, 2007, to sign copies of Paint the Wind, after spending a day at local schools. This was the first time I was attached to an author for an event, which means I was introduced into the fine arts of book prepping — PostIt-ing books for kids in line, getting stock ready for her to sign, etc. Ask any events bookseller, it really is an art.
  • September 22, 2007, was my first Shannon Hale event, for Book of a Thousand Days. If you’ve ever been to one of our events for Shannon, you know exactly how overwhelming they can be. Definitely a lesson in crowd control!
  • October 11, 2007, was the first time they ever left me alone to run an author event; it was also the first time I introduced an author. To understate, I was nervous. Fortunately for me, it was the lovely and talented Alexandra Enders, in town to promote her debut novel Bride Island. She was sweet, the crowd was great, and everything went well. Phew!

Since then there have been too many events to count, all buckets of fun. You may think I’m just saying that, but it’s true. Ask any events coordinator: All the madness of setting up the event, finding a venue, publicity, making sure you have the right books, making sure the books get to the venue on time, staffing, and the million other details that need your attention — all of that fades to nothing as you watch an audience and an author connect.

Rapunzel Roundup Pictures

August 28, 2008


Lots o’ Goodness

August 27, 2008

Rapunzel Roundup | Jessica Day George and Dragon Flight

August 21, 2008

Jessica Day George will be signing at the Rapunzel Roundup, August 23rd, 1 p.m. at the Foothill Library, 1135 South 2100 East, Salt Lake City

Dragon Flight continues the adventures of the quick-witted peasant girl, Creel Carlbrun, who in Dragon Slippers talks her way out of a dragon’s clutches. With an unusual pair of slippers given her by the dragon, she begins a quest to seek her fortune, walking across a country that is teetering on the brink of war.

A year passes; the Dragon Wars have ended. As Dragon Flight opens Creel, now 17, is back to working as a seamstress–and she’s bored. But not for long. When she learns that a bordering country has been breeding dragons in preparation for an invasion, she embarks on another adventure. This one will test her mettle against new and evil enemies (some with wings) and reunite her with her dragon friend Shardas and her human friend Prince Luka.

Rapunzel Roundup | Mette Ivie Harrison & The Princess and the Hound

August 14, 2008

Mette Ivie Harrison will be signing at the Rapunzel Roundup, August 23rd, 1 p.m. at the Foothill Library, 1135 South 2100 East, Salt Lake City

Harrison excels at fairy tales with a twist, and The Princess and the Hound is no exception. Prince George, haunted by a dark family secret, is a dutiful prince and son prepared to marry for the good of the kingdom. To keep political tensions down between his home, Kendel, and neighboring Sarrey, he agrees to an arranged marriage with their princess, Beatrice. More concerned with protecting his secret and appearing normal than with worrying about his bride-to-be, George is in for a surprise with Beatrice who has a secret all her own. Fans of reworked fairy tales and authors Robin McKinley, Patricia McKillip, and Cornelia Funke must pick this one up. And if my recommendation isn’t enough for you, Orson Scott Card liked it too!