Through a Brain Foggily

Thursday went to the Bronx Library Centre and got to hang out with some very smart, very interesting teenagers. Hey Melanie! Hey Elizabeth! Hey Rachely! Hey Rachell! Hey Melodie! And hey the girl with the lovely French name that I can’t remember! (Sorry.) And we talked books and writing and Midnighters and Uglies and it were fun.

And just as wonderful was the fact that Carol, who’s (I think) the head of Young Adult Services for the Bronx Library Center, is from Trinidad and loves cricket! So we got to talk about Brian Lara and Dwayne Bravo. A brief cricket moment in the midst of a desert of non-cricketness. Which is why I haven’t mentioned the highest scoring one-day match of all time in which Australia scored 434 and thus had the game in their pockets only to be outscored by South Africa. Holy crap! How is that possible? (And, you know, poor bloody bowlers—must’ve been the flatest, uncrackedest, giving-nothingest wicket of all time.)

But I digress, libraries wonderful, librarians wonderful, teenagers who come to library events wonderful.

That night we caught up with some of our YA novel writing compatriots and talked shop, gossiped, and decided whether trolls are human or not.

Today was the Books of Wonder reading. We read with newly minted superstar, Marcus Zusak, who courtesy of an appearance on Good Morning America, has been at number one or two on since Friday am. Oh my Elvis! He was charmingly overwhelmed by the fuss and the long queue of adult women wanting him to sign Book Thief for them.

Also appearing were Linzi Glass, author of The Year the Gypsies Came who I’d heard all about from Little Red School House librarian, Karyn Silverman, and Sarah Durkee whose middle grade book, The Fruit Bowl Project sounds utterly charming. We were on the girls table together and thus got to natter muchly about this and that. Very genial.

The event was a lot of fun. Always fab to meet new writers and the audience was fabby too. Lots of friends (thanks, guys, for the support!), not to mention all the folks I don’t know. Oh, and it was such a treat recognising these two brothers from Queens who were at our last Books of Wonder event and just as they did then asked smart cool questions. Yay, them.

Best of all, as usual, were the wonderful staff of Books of Wonder. Peter Glassman, the owner, is always fabulous. He’s so genuinely enthusiastic about books for kids and teenagers. It’s infectious. And it’s always a pleasure to hang out with Sara and Elena. Librarians and booksellers = the world’s best people.

So it’s as well we had to run from Books of Wonder to the New York Public Library for the 77th Annual Exhibition of Books for the Teen Age where Chris Crutcher gave the most wonderful speech about censorship and writing for young adults. He is my new hero.

And now I’m crawling into bed to sleep for many, many, many hours.

Posted: NYC, 9:30PM, 18 March


  1. Hezaa on #

    You know Cassandra Claire? I’ve read her Harry Potter fanfiction—it’s amazing! I never knew she was a published writer.

    Soon, I will begin reading Magic or Madness—as soon as my local library receives it. After your speech on the series at today’s book signing, my casual interest in it was renewed and magnified. Thank you!

  2. Justine on #

    I do indeed know the legendary Cassandra Claire. In fact, I count her as a good friend (even though sometimes she can be bad). Am I not cool? Her first original novel (not that her fan fic isn’t amazingly original) comes out in March 07. It’s called City of Bones and is completely fabulous. I loves it, I do.

    So pleased my talk piqued your interest—just like it was supposed to. I enjoy those kind of events, but am never quite sure what I should be saying. Thank you!

  3. Little Willow on #

    Sounds like great company and great times.

  4. Justine on #

    Indeed. If only we weren’t coughing and spluttering and foggy brained!

    Following your rec, I’m reading A Certain Slant of Light—so far so fabulous!

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