Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Rapid Fire Review: Calamity by Brandon Sanderson

Calamity (Reckoners #3)
By Brandon Sanderson
Random House
ISBN: 9780385743600
Buy from Indigo

Description: When Calamity lit up the sky, the Epics were born. David’s fate has been tied to their villainy ever since that historic night. Steelheart killed his father. Firefight stole his heart. And now Regalia has turned his closest ally into a dangerous enemy.

David knew Prof’s secret, and kept it even when the Reckoners’ leader struggled to control the effects of his Epic powers. But facing Obliteration in Babilar was too much. Prof has now embraced his Epic destiny. He’s disappeared into those murky shadows of menace Epics are infamous for the world over, and everyone knows there’s no turning back…

But everyone is wrong. Redemption is possible for Epics—Megan proved it. They’re not lost. Not completely. And David is just about crazy enough to face down the most powerful High Epic of all to get his friend back. Or die trying.

The Good Stuff
  • It's been a while since I read Firefight, but Sanderson does a brilliant job of reminding you about what happened in previous books, without boring the hell out of you with repetition 
  • Hard to mention this part without spoilers but the one part made me ache for my deceased father so bad that I had tears in my eyes 
  • Forgot how much I adored David and  his truly unique metaphors - I kinda wish he was my son
  • Dryly funny and mostly fast paced 
  • Audio version has a perfect narrator 
  • Truly unique spin on Super Heroes
  • Ok, I am such a Canadian - any mention of Abraham, Trenton, Canadian and Toronto made me smile
  • Ok I loved the moral about facing your fears and working through them - now if the rest of humanity could just understand this 
  • Enjoyed the snappy witty dialogue between characters
  • Want to thank Sanderson for writing this series as there are so few YA books that I can recommend to male readers
  • Have a soft spot for Cody - his Scottish stories always make me giggle 
  • The highlight of this series for me has always been David - I just love him so much - no matter the talent of the writer and the incredible world development - if you don't have a character that you feel a connection too you won't enjoy the story 
  • I liked the ending, clears up things nicely so if he never writes anymore about the series you will be satisfied, but at the same time leaves himself the option of writing more
The Not So Good Stuff
  • Some of it just didn't make sense to me - its the other dimension stuff - I just cannot get around it (yes that is my problem, not the authors)
  • A tad (and I mean a wee tad) too much inner angst - again I am a 46 yr old women - but as I always mention my reviews are based on MY enjoyment of the story and not on the talents of the author - this book is written for teens & I slightly remember all that angst 
  • Yeah -- spoiler alert - don;t listen to the audio version while walking the dog  - um the part with David's Dad - tears rolling down my face - people staring at me 
  • Some parts made me go --- huh - I know its been a while, but I am feeling like something doesn't make sense here
  • Would have like more of Abraham's back story
Favorite Quotes/Passages

“Yet—in all of infinity—I don’t think I’ve ever found a dimension where you can kiss worth a hill of beans.”
“That’s unfair,” I said. “You didn’t complain last night.”
“You stuck your tongue in my ear, David.”
“That’s way romantic. Saw it in a movie once. It’s like…a passionate wet willie.”

"Cupcakes are too dainty for a Scotsman. Give him one, and he'll ask you why didn't you shoot the wee cake's parents instead and serve that."

“Damn, I miss the internet. You could always find people doing stupid stuff on the internet.”

3.5 Dewey/s

Borrowed the audio from Jen - so once again I don't have to review - I just have a sick need to share my opinion on every book I read - well I do get paid at Chapters for telling customers my opinions but I don't get paid to tell you all - please feel free to send cash - I am awesome, have a fabulous family and I am grateful for all I have but I really would like to be out of debt 

Rapid Fire Review: Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

Lab Girl
by Hope Jahren
Knopf Canada (Penguin Random House)
ISBN: 9780345809865
Buy from Indigo

Description: Acclaimed scientist Hope Jahren has built three laboratories in which she’s studied trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Her first book is a revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also so much more.

Lab Girl is a book about work, love, and the mountains that can be moved when those two things come together. It is told through Jahren’s stories: about her childhood in rural Minnesota with an uncompromising mother and a father who encouraged hours of play in his classroom’s labs; about how she found a sanctuary in science, and learned to perform lab work done “with both the heart and the hands”; and about the inevitable disappointments, but also the triumphs and exhilarating discoveries, of scientific work.

Yet at the core of this book is the story of a relationship Jahren forged with a brilliant, wounded man named Bill, who becomes her lab partner and best friend. Their sometimes rogue adventures in science take them from the Midwest across the United States and back again, over the Atlantic to the ever-light skies of the North Pole and to tropical Hawaii, where she and her lab currently make their home.

The Good Stuff
  • I never thought I could become so engrossed and truly mesmerized with a book that talks about plants and flowers 
  • BILL - I won't be able to plant a tree right now, but I will be putting Bill's name on the tree in the park just outside my gate
  • Such a fascinating, truly complicated women
  • She made trees, plants and weeds come alive and made them feel human - you will finish reading this book with a true appreciation of all plant/tree life and want to do all you can to protect them
  • Her writing is extremely poetic on many occasions
  • Extremely honest and raw
  • Her description of a depressive episode are so bang on and raw - the courage to be so open about something so personal is so brave
  • Hopefully will inspire girls to enter the male dominated sciences field
  • Makes you want to learn more - why oh why must our teachers make science so bloody boring - her passion for her work is thrilling and inspiring  
  • I love the relationship between her and Bill - this is my idea of true friendship
  • Bill!!!
  • Loved the kids story Bill made up  - twisted but love it
  • Umm the story about Hope's intern who worked in the zoo and had to put antibiotic on the monkeys genitals - yup worth the price of the book
The Not So Good Stuff
  • The audio version was hard for me to listen to as the author reads the book and while extremely passionate, it was hard to listen to her overwrought voice.  This is just a personal observance and no judgement - it was just painful to listen to at times - I had to listen in installments
  • I now have profound grief about how many plants I have killed over the years and have vowed to change that - bugger do you know how little of a green thumb I have
  • Her pronunciation of the word "root" is jarring
Favorite Quotes/Passages

“Working in the hospital teaches you that there are only two kinds of people in the world: the sick and the not sick. If you are not sick, shut up and help.”

"We were interrupted by a good natured offer from a drunkish student who was dangerously armed with a guitar."

"Within certain social circles of the married, a  single women over the age of 30 inspires compassion similar to that bestowed upon a big friendly stray dog.

4 Dewey's

I borrowed this from Leslie and I don't have to review but well we know I have to share

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Rapid Fire Review: Something Fierce by Carmen Aguirre

Something Fierce: Memoirs of a Revolutionary Daughter
by Carmen Aguirre
Penguin Random House
ISBN: 9780345813824
Buy from Indigo

DescriptionA gripping, darkly comic first-hand account of a young underground revolutionary during the Pinochet dictatorship in 1980s Chile.

On September 11, 1973, a violent coup removed Salvador Allende, the democratically elected socialist president of Chile, from office. Thousands were arrested, tortured and killed under General Augusto Pinochet's repressive new regime. Soon after the coup, six-year-old Carmen Aguirre and her younger sister fled the country with their parents for Canada and a life in exile.

In 1978, the Chilean resistance issued a call for exiled activists to return to Latin America. Most women sent their children to live with relatives or with supporters in Cuba, but Carmen's mother kept her precious girls with her. As their mother and stepfather set up a safe house for resistance members in La Paz, Bolivia, the girls' own double lives began. At eighteen, Carmen herself joined the resistance. With conventional day jobs as a cover, she and her new husband moved to Argentina to begin a dangerous new life of their own.

This dramatic, darkly funny narrative, which covers the eventful decade from 1979 to 1989, takes the reader inside war-ridden Peru, dictatorship-run Bolivia, post-Malvinas Argentina and Pinochet's Chile. Writing with passion and deep personal insight, Carmen captures her constant struggle to reconcile her commitment to the movement with the desires of her youth and her budding sexuality. 'Something Fierce' is a gripping story of love, war and resistance and a rare first-hand account of revolutionary life.

The Good Stuff
  • Truly fascinating 
  • She never feels sorry for herself or lays blame on her parents for her - um - wow  unusual- childhood
  • So fucking brave for opening herself and laying everything raw and bare
  • Learned so much and never even realized that I was learning so much. Talked to many people about this one after I was done
  • Darkly funny
  • No holds barred
  • A truly admirable women - have already downloaded her latest book
  • Made me feel like I was truly blessed to live in the country I do, but at the same time guilty for my lack of knowledge on what is going on in different parts of the world
  • Would be a really good one to read for book clubs, as so many issues and themes that could be discussed
The Not So Good Stuff
  • I am mixed on this one in terms of the audio version.  I love hearing her pronounce names and places the way they were meant to be said.  But at the same time the reading was almost bland at times. I imagine this was hard for her to read and she probably was trying to protect her self by reading it this way, but for a listener it lacked the passion to go with the tale
  • Disjointed at times in terms of flow - but hello it was her first book and well obviously I cannot write either so who am I to judge
  • Jesus Christ people do despicable things in the name of power
  • As a mom it was hard to read this one as my natural inclination is to protect my child at all causes and never put them in such a dire situation.  I  don't understand how Carmen's mother could put her children ins such a volatile situation.  But these are my feelings and I am no experrt so it is not my place to judge and who is to say what she did was wrong 
Favorite Quotes/Passages

" She took the opportunity to remind Ali and me that organized religion had been invented  by the rich and powerful to keep the poor down."

“A fa├žade is when you make up a story because it’s dangerous to tell the truth. … It’s a story you make up when you are involved in something bigger than yourself and you don’t want to risk your life or the lives of others.”

4 Dewey's

Another one I didnt HAVE to review, I purchased this from audible with my limited funds - ok fairy godmother - you gave Cinderella a spectacular dress - all I want is to be out of debt, I already got my court jester which is soooo much better than a prince

Rapid Fire Review: A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Mist and Fury (Court of Thornes and Roses #2)
By Sarah J. Maas
ISBN: 9781619634466
Buy from Indigo

Description: Feyre survived Amarantha's clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can't forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin's people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

With more than a million copies sold of her beloved Throne of Glass series, Sarah J. Maas's masterful storytelling brings this second book in her seductive and action-packed series to new heights.

The Good Stuff

  • Fast paced, exciting and unique
  • As mentioned on many reviews, I am not a big fan of Fae story-lines, but Maas's writing and characters are so bloody brilliant I will read anything she writes
  • Wow - fae sex sounds awesome, gotta find me someone like Rhys (love me a naughty boy with a good heart -- yeah Han Solo was my first love)
  • Character development is bang on, Maas writes characters that are constantly evoloving
  • And my favorite thing about her books are her female heroines are kick ass and don't want some namby pamby Prince to save them.  Feyre is someone I would be proud to have at my side or to to marry one of my boys. 
  • Rhys - what can I not say about how fantastic he is - he encourages and supports Feyre for who she is and who she will become - he just doeskin want to protect her and keep her in a gilded cage (just realized that maybe I should have put spoiler alert on this)
  • Incredible world building 
  • Loved the new characters added and really want to know more about them
  • Maas is a brilliant storyteller - when you read her you become lost in her world and when you stop reading , you feel lost and want to jump right back in 

The Not so Good Stuff

  • Umm please parents don't ask me about the content in this one, cause I have to be honest and your teen is going to give me the evil eye when I tell you and then you get all prudish and won't let them have it (also if you are 12-14 it might be a little much for you and then you are going to think the only good sex will come from a fae lord and than no man will ever come close) 
  • Listened to this one and had to turn it off when the kids were home cause of the naughty bits (However, well done and seriously hot)
  • Really want myself a fae lord now
  • Now this one is just my opinion and remember I am a 46 year old women - the chick reading the audio version  has a beautiful voice but it is a tad too angst y for me. 
  • When the hell is the next book coming out -- momma wants more and maybe more Throne of Glass series too - you are my new favorite author and can I adopt you 

Favorite Quotes\Passages

“He thinks he'll be remembered as the villain in the story. But I forgot to tell him that the villain is usually the person who locks up the maiden and throws away the key. He was the one who let me out.”

I felt Cassian’s spirit beside me in that moment, and could have sworn I heard him say, ‘If you don’t marry her, you stupid prick, I will.”

“I was not a pet, not a doll, not an animal. I was a survivor, and I was strong. I would not be weak, or helpless again. I would not, could not be broken.

4.75 Dewey's

I purchased this one and am under no obligation of reviewing - just love to share my opinions on books

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Calgary Comic Book Expo

The Calgary Comic Book Expo is usually the highlight of my year as I get to get my geek on and since I work for Chapters, get paid to do it.  I wasn't as in to it this year as, to be frank, I have no money and there weren't a lot of guests that I was interested in meeting.  I knew I was going to have a good time, but I wasn't counting down the hours till the event.

I did end of having tons of fun.  Mostly from hanging out with fellow Chapters/Indigo employees from my store and other stores.   It was nice being able to see Chelsea and Richard again, who have gone on to other stores and I really enjoyed chatting with Tanner and his fabulous wife Caitlyn and Tom (Thanks for he weeping angels bag I use it all the time!)

Chelsea, Tanner and Richard
Highlights this year was chatting with John Barrowman - hope his hubby likes the socks I got him.  Trust me even if you don't watch Doctor Who, Torchwood, Arrow, etc (and yes I think there is something a little wrong with you if you don't know who he is) you have to meet him.  He is hands down one of my favorite performers because he really does give each and everyone of his fans, his full attention.  Not to mention he is seriously handsome and hilarious! Also much to hubby's dismay, he is the reason I started watching Doctor Who. Though Jeff does love him in Arrow 

Another highlight was my eldest son, Jake and I getting a photo op with Alan Tudyk -- Jake was dressed as dead Wash and Tudyk had fun with that.

Jake, Alan Tudyk, Me
I took crap pictures this year and any of the good ones you see in this post are courtesy of Richard.  I love and hate the picture of Me, Billie Pyper and John Barrowman.  I was so flustered and unready for the picture, you can see on my face that I am thinking - what the fuck.  Wish I had just relaxed and gone with it -- but love the photo cuz its fucking hilarious.  A photo op with Barrowman is never boring

Most of our crew survived on the cereal from this one booth, Seriously Cereal.  In fact Richard bought us a round of cereal on the last day as a thank you for all our hard work.  It's fun, but fuck balls (my favorite Chelsea phrase) it is exhausting on your body -- especially your feet.

Looking forward to next year -- that's right Richard, I am in & again will bribe you with my crack for the opportunity.

As I mentioned, we had no money this year so we were very frugal.  I purchased a Doctor Who wine glass - yeah two of my favorite things all in one.  And some adorable 10th Doctor coasters. I Have to be practical and only buy things that are useful.  Trust me if I had the money I could have dropped a huge load of cash.  These events are not cheap my friends.  It will cost you a fortune just for photo ops & if you want them autographed - even more.  I really wish the talent didn't charge so much as many of us geeks - are not exactly wealthy.  Some guests are fabulous and let you chat with them without purchasing an autograph or a photo, but many are not.  

Random Photos

John was fab asked guy all sorts of questions and genuinely wanted to know everything about the man 

I hit these guys everyday - you pay a couple of bucks to get photo and all money goes to charity


Obviously John had fun here

My fabulous first born dressed as dead Wash - I am so proud

This Jawa was hilarious - made my day

Just a few of the fabulous Chaptesr employees - these guys rock

Favorite Costumes (Yup most are Richards pictures)

These girls were stunning and also a lot of fun - thanks for trying to not me feel old either 
Who doesn't love an Ash 
Dude even had the tunes playing

Our very own George RR Martin (Pat) 

No idea what he is but damn he put some work into his costume

The little Harlequinn was perfect - she had serious attitude

Sorry this isn't as detailed as in past years, but its been a while since the event and I didn't take notes like I have previously. Not to mentions its fucking hot as hades here in Calgary as I type this.  

Book Expo America 2016

I think we all know that I love books more than most anything else, other than my family, in this world.   Last year was brutal as I didn't get to attend Book Expo America.  This year I decided that I wasn't going to miss out

It was a bit of a disappointment as since it was held in Chicago instead of New York the publishers didn't bring out their A game of authors and events. Also the weather was windy (yeah big surprise) and rainy.  On a positive note it was super organized and extremely clean and a lot more relaxed.

Left Calgary for Toronto early in the morning on the Wednesday and ended up flying to Chicago from Toronto with Jeremy Cammy,  Our flight was delayed and the movie selection wasn't the best but it was a quick flight so no biggie and I splurged and celebrated with a glass of red wine.  While waiting for luggage (sorry Cammy and I totally want your carry on) we got to see some Cadets getting ready for the Navy.  The guys in charge were yelling at them and putting them through some routines that were truly impressive to watch.  Thinking they need to take my kids and put them in their place.  Met up with my roommate Jenn and we all headed out to Cheesecake factory for dessert.  The menu was huge and I had no idea how big the portions were going to be.  Ordered dessert at the same time which Cammy and Jenn made fun of me for, but I choose my meal based on dessert options.  Well as soon as my meal came, I understood and asked to cancel my dessert.  We ended up sharing dessert instead. And I am still thinking about how good it was. We were staying at the Drake, which is a very pretty hotel and close to Bloomingdales - which was a bonus for me. Won't bore  you with the story, but my friends, my co-workers at Humber College and family will understand why this was funny.

Made me giggle, yup I am a big kid

Next morning after sleeping in and meeting up with Cammy for some shopping where we found the most amazing shop ever - A Dr. Seuss store.  Love Dr. Seuss so much I have a tattoo of the Lorax on my ankle. I could have spent a mint in here. Also picked up a local ghost story book from the Barnes and Noble.  Every where I travel I try to pick up a local ghost story book as a memory.

Please Jeff, it's about to go up in price LOL
SO if anyone is looking for a gift for m
 I finally headed out to pick up my badge for BEA and hit the show. FYI - I hate my hair and must change ASAP

Fredrick Backman
What a charming and delightful writer. His A Man Called Ove was one of my favorite books last year.  Told him how my Non Girly Book Club members Jen and Leslie loved it and he ended up signing a book for both of them as well which was so kind.  He spent tons of time with each of his fans as well which is a rarity at these events

Nicholas Sparks
Totally had to meet the guy.  I loved The Notebook but most of his other stuff is a little too romantic and angsty for me.  Saved a spot for Cammy so he could do some schmoozing to bring Sparks to Canada for a signing


This was a busy morning with two breakfasts,   The first was the Penguin Random House Library breakfast. We got there a little late as the shuttle was late.  The breakfast was wonderful and much appreciated. The Authors were Amor Towles, Graham Moore, Jennifer Close and Brunonia Barry.  Amor was charming and witty.  Graham Moore was dryly self deprecating and charming.  He makes his book sound so exciting that I added him to my list of books to get signed.  Jennifer Close told a   story about meeting Obama and that when she reads stories and wonders how much of story comes from real life and that we all can agree that we feel a little nervous for Gillian Flynns husband

Thanks Felicia for the invite to the Simon and Schuster Children's Breakfast.  We missed the first little bit as we were still at the other breakfast.  Speakers were Laurie Halse Anderson, Jason Reynolds, S.J, Kincaid, Jennifer Weiner and James Hannibal.  I cannot wait to read Kincaid's book as it sounds intriguing and she was just so utterly delightful.  Jason Reynolds was hilarious and so passionate and kinda cute too.  Jennifer Weiner was a delight as always.  Unfortunately we missed Laurie Halse Anderson but I can imagine she was fascinating and James Hannibal was charming and silly and has quite the remarkable background.
Jason Reynolds, Laurie Halse Anderson, S.J. Kincaid, Jennifer Weiner and James Hannibal (pic from Jenn)
Jennifer Weiner (pic from Jenn)

S.J. Kincaid
Kenny Loggins
Now this was one of my proudest moments.  Headed out early to get in line for THE Kenny Loggins and there was NO line up.  Talked to the girls in charge and they had no idea what was going on and how it was going to be organized.  They figured that people could just hang around where Kenny was going to perform and then figure out what to do for the signing.  Cammy came up to see what was going on and mentioned that this was going to be a shit show because they had no idea how many people were going to show up.  The man knows what he is talking about because he hosts these types of events a couple times a week for Indigo.  As it got closer and closer the people in charge realized that they were going to have to figure out something quick.  Cammy told me to go tell them what they should do --- and I did.  Talked to them and explained how things were done at similar events and they listened to me and asked me to help get it started.  Was so proud of myself because I am more of an introvert.  The event went smoothly and they kept thanking me and even gave me one of their Footloose tshirts which fits me perfectly and wear it all the time now.  Met tons of wonderful ladies in line and they adored Cammy.   Trust me the man is charm personified and can get anyone to talk - he also wears the best socks EVER.

Kenny Loggins getting ready to play
Cammy fist bumping Kenny

Me and Catherine 

Catherine McKenzie. One of my favorite Canadian writers.  She writes chick lit styled books, but smart chick lit where characters behave and develop realistically.  Looking forward to her latest.  If you haven't read something of hers I suggest to start with either Spin or Arranged.

Oliver Jeffers
Handsome & talented

What can I say about Oliver.  He is charming and his books are utterly delightful. Perfect for kids of all ages.

Academy award winner and author Graham Moore (picture curtest of Cammy)

Also met Gwyn Creedy and Ransom Riggs

Scholastic Picture Book Party

As always the highlight of BEA is any event  put on by Scholastic Books.  This year was no different.  The food was incredible and the event entertaining.  This year the authors were Kate Beaton, David Shannon and Tom Lichtenfield.  Event was filled with musical numbers, author readings and hilarious presentations. At the end we also received galleys of all the picture books and my new treasure, a signed and illustrated print of all three books that came with a frame and everything. It will be going up in my home library.

Sourcebooks Party

This incredibly fun event was held at the 360 in the John Hancock building.  The food and drink was out of this world.  Just spent most of the night chatting with Jenn and other book lovers, drinking wine and admiring the view.  Also went outside my comfort zone and did the tilt.TILT is the first of its kind in the world and Safely holds up to 8 visitors at a time. Extends out and over The Magnificent Mile and Chicago's famous skyline and Offers visitors unique, downward facing views from 1,000 feet up (yeah totally cut and pasted the description from its website)  As we left we got the best grab bag ever from any event - Champagne plus a method to open - what could not be better than that for those visiting the windy city.  Thanks for the invite guys for the fabulous and extremely well organized event.

Got brave and did the Tilt (not sure what I am doing with my leg though)

View from 360

View from 360

Love the gift bag they gave us

Children's Breakfast

One of the most interesting events is the Children's Breakfast.  This years speakers were Jamie Lee Curtis, Dav Pilkey, Sabaa Tahir and Gene Luen Yang.  Jamie Lee Curtis was sincere, charming and hilarious.  She spoke very movingly about her sons struggles with reading and how Captain Underpants became a game changer for her son and that she was grateful to Dav Pilkey for writing books for children like her son.  I have to agree with her I have mad love for Dav Pilkey and have met him on numerous occasions and think he is fantastic.  Sabaa spoke about how fear has influenced her youth and her writing.  How reading helped with her anger of her childhood and the extreme racism she had to deal with.  Dav Pilkey talked about how having ADHD influenced him as a writer and as always was hilarious and so open and honest. His slide show was delightful. He also reminded the audience that you need to love what you read and what you do.  Gene Luen Yang was  hilarious and I look forward to looking into his work.   Breakfast was slightly better than previous BEA's and we all got to take home copies of all the presenters books.  Thanks Felicia from Simon and Schuster for the tickets.

 Gene Luen Yang, Sabaa Tahir, Jamie Lee Curtis, Dav Pilkey,

Talking about Dav Pilkey (pic courtesy of Cammy)

All you need is love

Maggie Stiefvater

A joy as always, even though we didn't have much of a chance to talk, I did give her the recipe for the avocado pudding.
My crappy picture of the stunning Maggie

Jamie Lee Curtis

This was the moment I was looking forward to as soon as I heard that Jamie Lee Curtis was going to be at BEA.  I think she is one of the most talented and stunning actresses and I thoroughly enjoyed her kids picture books.  So I was a good little fan and lined up early. I didn't mind the wait as I got to chat with a bunch of different people in line.  So after like 1.5 hours its finally my turn to talk to her and this total bitch (lady with dark hair at the right of the picture below) jumps in and pushes her way into getting a picture with Jamie.  Ms Curtis than gets really upset with her and totally flustered.  And guess who is next in line -- yup me.  Got to talk to her for less than 60 seconds because she is rightly snapping at the lady for jumping in in front of everyone that had been waiting patiently (I totally respect that about her - she speaks her mind) Unfortunately the incident set her off so you could tell she was done.  She was kind and gracious to me and we talked about spina bifida for a second but that was it.  I had look forward to it all week and one obnoxious women ruins it.

Dav Pilkey

Yup, the creator of Captain Underpants and the saviour of reluctant readers everywhere.  I always enjoy chatting with him because he has the most amazing sense of humour - one of the only pictures I like of me the entire trip

Meg Cabot
Yeah, what can I say about Meg Cabot, other than I adore her.  She is tons of fun and had to go see her again -- think this is my third time lining up for her over the years.  Love her Vanished series.  She is fabulous with her younger fans too

Kendare Blake

She is so young looking, but don't let her youth fool you, she is an exceptionally talented author of many YA novels, including my favorite, Anna Dressed in Blood

Jennifer Nielsen
Such a friendly and funny, not to mention talented author.  Her False Prince series is perfect for both boys and girls in the 9-12 range.  Not to mention enjoyable for readers of any age - yup this 46 year old women loved it.  Looking forward to catching up on her other series plus this new one!

Also got books signed by Jeffrey Brown, Jill Shalvis, Brandon Mull, David Shannon and
Kate Beaton

Spent a lovely evening listening to jazz music and watching some beautiful couples dance and have fun at the Drake


We were leaving in the afternoon so Jenn and I decided to go out for a walk and see the sites.  Was a little disappointed that I heard at the last minute Peirce Brown was going to be at BookCon - I would have gone if I had known he was coming.  But I am going to go to a signing of yours one day Pierce. In fact my new mission is to bring you to Calgary for an event. Mark my words Universe I am going to make it happen.  Jenn and I ended up at Navy Pier where is was cold and rainy so we snuck into Margaritaville for the biggest nachos I have ever seen - if we had known we would have shared

And finally relaxing at the Twist at Toronto Pearson for some food, drink a book while I waited for the flight home to Calgary

And my favorite thing about being back in Calgary (Jeff is missing as he was exhausted after being mom and dad while I was away)

Random Shots and Thoughts

It was lovely meeting all of the following people (and those who I forgot to get cards from)  My favorite thing about BEA is meeting all of my fellow book lovers in line ups and getting to know all sorts of strangers. Keira Drake and Chelsea Sedoti good luck with your books, you ladies were delightful.  Other fantastic ladies I met Heather Beverly, Nancy Firfer, Jenn Northington, Kristin Clifton, Nikki Mutch, Eli Madison (Love your book covers jewellery, D.W. Hirsch, Mishma Nixon, Trumps and Amanda McCrimmon. Also it was fun chatting with you the gentlemen that did extra parts in movies and your lovely wife while waiting in line for Jamie Lee Curtis.

Also really enjoyed the booth with the literary temporary tattoos.  Off to join the chain now.

Cover reveal for latest in Throne of Glass series - CAN'T WAIT

Cammy's Spectacular socks

Advanced Reading Copies

Signed Books
This bag from Thirty-One  (and yes you can order one from me)  - is the most durable amazing bag ever!  It was filled with 52 books of various sizes plus some last minute purchases from Trader Joes.  It went through luggage at Chicago, Toronto Pearson AND Calgary and not a scratch, tear or even a mark on it - that is a miracle my friends!

This trip taught me a lot about myself, both good and bad and decided to make some changes.  Won't bore with tons of this inner stuff but I did realize that it pisses me off and makes me feel invisible when you are talking to someone and they are always doing something with their cell phones.  Realized that it is my problem, not theirs,  and that I should speak up about it.  Also I am way too nice and accommodating and that I expect others to be the same, and that is just not reasonable.  Also I am a bookseller and a Librarian first and foremost and I saw some intense and bad behaviour from some book bloggers that I really feel that the BEA portion should be only for booksellers and Librarians and that Bookcon should be more for  bloggers and book lovers.  Just my opinion and rant all you want.

Yeah enough about that, but I have to get it out and cannot afford therapy LOL.