I was lucky enough to be able to attend BookExpo America this year! I had such an amazing time and met so many great people! This post will not do my trip justice, but I will share a bit about my experiences and show you some of my favourite pictures from the event!
Table of Contents
The Bloggers Conference
As I headed to the Book Bloggers Conference, I got my first glimpse of the Javits Center! It is seriously a cool building! And the inside of it is just as cool.
So I got in line to enter the main room for the conference, and I saw Danny from Bewitched Bookworms just across the line! So obviously I ran over and said hello. She is just as awesome in person! And we constantly saw each other throughout the conference, it was great!
My two favourite panels
Of all the panels at the Bloggers Conference, I feel like only two are worth mentioning. The first is the “Young Adult Editor Insights” panel. Editors from publishing companies like Scholastic and Disney-Hyperion talked about some of their upcoming books and why they rock! Plus, we got to pick up some AWESOME free books! I came away with Never Fade (The Darkest Minds #2), These Broken Stars, Plague in the Mirror, and Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer.
And second was the Blogging Platforms panel with Rachel from Parajunkee, Stephanie Leary (a WordPress consultant), Evie from Bookish, and April from Good Books and Good Wine. This was one of my favourite panels because I love all things WordPress and it was fun to chat about it! Plus, Parajunkee mentioned the Ultimate Book Blogger Plugin, which was awesome!
I think the one downside to this panel was that the attendees were so split between people who are established bloggers, and people who knew NOTHING about blogging. Not to diss anyone, but I was kind of disappointed that non-bloggers were allowed into the conference. There were some people there who said they don’t blog but “wanted to start”. I don’t feel like this should have been a conference to go to to learn HOW to blog. I don’t think it was beneficial for either parties to have the people who know what they’re doing mixed with the newbies.
The people who had a good blogging foundation (like myself) wanted to dig deep into expert WordPress topics, discuss followers and pageviews, talk about reach and how best to grow your blog, etc. But the newbies had no idea what a “plugin” was or what “WordPress” was. I just feel like it was so disjointed and both parties suffered because we were all mixed together.
BEA – Recap
FINALLY it was time for BEA day #1! I was so excited and nervous, and although I kind of knew what to expect, I didn’t *exactly* know what to expect. Once I got to the center, I met up with Eileen from Singing and Reading in the Rain and we hung out the whole time! She is amazing and we had so much fun together!
As soon as we walked in, we were overwhelmed by the pure AWESOMENESS of the exhibit hall! All the booths were incredible and it was just an epic and overwhelming site. We stopped by some publishers booths, chatted with people, handed out business cards, before making our way to the autographing area.
We were hoping to get in line for Kendare Blake’s signing of Antigoddess, but because we didn’t make a beeline for it straight away (pretty distractions and all that), we didn’t manage to get a copy! But we met up with a new blogger named Heather and we took a fun “pity us” selfie, with her copy of Antigoddess in the background!
So instead, we got straight in line to snag a copy of Gretchen McNeil’s upcoming book, 3:59! Then we made a beeline for the Scholastic booth, where we got in line to get signed lithographs of the new Harry Potter cover art! We got to meet the new illustrator and see the cover reveal for book #2!
I don’t know about you guys, but I’m a huuuuge fan of the new artwork!
Later that day, we got in line to get Crown of Midnight signed by Sarah J. Maas. We were in line for about an hour but it wasn’t so bad. At that point we were pretty exhausted so it was nice to chill out on the floor and be off our feet. We also met Jamie from The Perpetual Page-Turner while we were in line!
After this signing, we RAN LIKE HELL to the Random House booth, hoping to snag a copy of Teardrop. Amazingly, they still had copies left! So we got in line, and guess who we ran into? Katie from Katie’s Book Blog! Once we all got our copies of Teardrop, we took an “OMG we got Teardrop” selfie. Crazy faces were required.
Days #2 and #3
I’m grouping these next two days together because they weren’t as hectic and they kind of blur together for me LOL!
While in line to get Altered by Gennifer Albin, Eileen and I met Kellie Sheridan, author of Mortality (which I’m DYING to read!). We just started chatting and at first I didn’t realize who she was. Then I had kind of a freak out moment when I realized she’s KELLIE SHERIDAN and she had tweeted at me just a few weeks prior! So cool!
Later, we got in line for Cat Patrick’s signing, thinking she was signing The Originals (because I swear that’s what was listed!), but it turns out she and Suzanne Young were both signing their new book, Just Like Fate. So I ended up with two copies of the book because I had already gotten one earlier from a galley drop!
On the third day, Epic Reads made an appearance! They set up a “Spin to Win” thing in the HarperCollins booth, where you could spin the wheel and win whatever book you landed on! Unfortunately I won Crash by Nicole Williams. I say ‘unfortunately’ only because I’ve already read the book! So I walked around BEA holding it up shouting “Who wants this book?? Who wants it??” And finally I gave it to a lucky person!
Other BEA Highlights
Jessica Verdi Signing
Jessica Verdi signing copies of My Life After Now. She is SO sweet!!
And finally, we had a teary, heartfelt goodbye! Me, Eileen, Ezmirelda from Parafantasy, and Hannah from The Girl in a Cafe spent like 30 minutes saying goodbye outside the exhibit hall! It was fun, but also sad!
Seriously, Hannah is AMAAAAZING! Every moment she, Eileen, and I spent together was pure awesomeness!
BEA Overall: Pure Awesome, and Epic Exhaustion
BookExpo America was definitely the most amazing experience ever! I would go again in a heartbeat (hopefully I can go next year!). I met so many incredible bloggers, authors, publicists, and just readers. Plus, I picked up loads of great new books!
But it was also EXHAUSTING! We woke up early to get there early, then walked around for like 9 hours, plus carried books around all day… I was ready to sleep every day at 5pm. And by the last day, I was yawning all afternoon!
Plus, a couple disasters
There weren’t any disasters for me *at* BEA, but there were a couple in New York City!
First, by the end of the trip I was starting to feel a little sick! A bit of coughing, sniffling, all that.
And, my mom left my favourite “romantic getaway” tote bag in a taxi! 🙁 (I still love you, mom ♥)
Then, one night, I got stranded in New York City two miles from my hotel and was unable to catch a cab, so I had to walk for 40 minutes in shoes that are NOT meant to be walked in! My feet felt like they were bleeding by the time I made it back!
And finally, at the airport when we were getting ready to fly home, we got a note from the people at the airport saying that my bag (filled with BEA books) had burst open going down a chute and they had to put my things back inside and wrap my bag in plastic! Luckily everything made it back in one piece and no books or embarrassing articles of clothing were left behind.
Other than that…
Exhaustion and disasters aside, it was such an incredible couple of days!
Final Book Haul
Here are all the books I got from BookExpo America, minus the two I gave to my mom!
Titles & Goodreads Links:
- Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard (signed)
- Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick and Suzanne Young (signed)
- The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
- The Execution of Noa P. Singleton by Elizabeth L. Silver (signed)
- This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales (signed)
- Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles (signed)
- Fractured by Sarah Fine
- These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
- Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken
- Teardrop by Lauren Kate (signed)
- The Enchanter Heir by Cinda Williams Chima
- Plague in the Mirror by Deborah Noyes
- The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (signed)
- The Secret of Ella and Micha by Jessica Sorensen
- Splintered by A.G. Howard (with Unhinged excerpt)
- Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender
- My Life After Now by Jessica Verdi (signed)
- How to Love by Kate Cotugno
- 3:59 by Gretchen McNeil (signed)
- Cherry Money Baby by John M. Cusick
- Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein
- Altered by Gennifer Albin
- Left Drowning by Jessica Park (signed)
- Wait for You by J. Lynn (signed)
- The 100 by Kass Morgan
- The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle (signed)
- Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston
- Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas (signed)
- Tumble & Fall by Alexandra Coutts
- All the Truth That’s In Me by Julie Berry (signed)
- Entwined With You by Sylvia Day (signed)
- Tandem by Anna Jarzab (signed)
- The Boy on the Porch by Sharon Creech
- The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater
- Enchanted by Alethea Kontis (signed)
- The Dollhouse Asylum by Mary Gray (signed)
- Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson (signed)
I wound up with two ARCs of Just Like Fate, so now I’m giving one away!
About the Book
Just Like Fate by Cat Patrick & Suzanne Young
Caroline is at a crossroads. Her grandmother is sick, maybe dying. Like the rest of her family, Caroline’s been at Gram’s bedside since her stroke. With the pressure building, all Caroline wants to do is escape–both her family and the reality of Gram’s failing health. So when Caroline’s best friend offers to take her to a party one fateful Friday night, she must choose: stay by Gram’s side, or go to the party and live her life.
The consequence of this one decision will split Caroline’s fate into two separate paths—and she’s about to live them both.
Friendships are tested and family drama hits an all-new high as Caroline attempts to rebuild old relationships, and even make a few new ones. If she stays, her longtime crush, Joel, might finally notice her, but if she goes, Chris, the charming college boy, might prove to be everything she’s ever wanted.
Though there are two distinct ways for her fate to unfold, there is only one happy ending…
- Open internationally
- One winner
- The winner will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen
Did you attend BEA?
If you attended BEA and wrote a recap post, link me!! I’d love to check it out! 😀