Last night Trisha and I were lucky enough to attend a dinner honoring debut novelist, Amy Greene. Amy’s novel, Bloodroot, goes on sale in January and since the author is a true Tennessee girl, her very wise Ingram account manager, Jason Gobble, set up a dinner with local booksellers and media.
Our group of twenty met at Cock of the Walk (yup, you read that right), a down home restaurant known for their catfish and well, fried . . . everything.
Author Amy was as sweet as could be, and our group enjoyed a fun-filled night of greasy food and book-dominated conversation.
Named for a flower whose blood-red sap possesses the power both to heal and poison, Bloodroot is a story about the legacies—of magic and madness, faith and secrets, passion and loss—that haunt one family across the generations, from the Great Depression to today.
Amy told me she met author Jill McCorkle at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Jill loved Amy’s novel and put her in touch with New York literary agent, Leigh Feldman. Amy says she met with Leigh and had a book deal with Knopf within the month. Not bad for a first time writer from East Tennessee! We love Bloodroot at BookPage and we’re hoping others will agree.
The book goes on sale January 12, so make sure you put this one on your 2010 reading list!
The BookPage staffers are no strangers to book signings at our local Davis Kidd. But last night, things were a little different at the Green Hills area bookstore. Lauren Conrad, reality television starlet (known for “Laguna Beach” and “The Hills”), was in town signing copies of her young adult novel, L.A. Candy – and Nashville fans sure took notice. Over 350 people turned out for the signing, and when Trisha and I arrived at 5:15 (for a 6pm signing) we were relegated to the farthest corner of the bookstore (and at the end of the dreaded ‘standby’ line).
Luckily we found some interesting books to pass the time.
And we certainly enjoyed the people-watching.
At long last, the woman of the hour arrived, and was met by shrieks of joy from her many eager fans.
The signing line actually moved pretty quickly (“No personalizations, no posed photos, Ms. Conrad will only sign copies of her book”) and at the end of the night, we were two happy campers, with freshly signed copies of L.A. Candy.
Trisha gets the “Good Sport of the Night” award, since she was probably the only person at the signing who hasn’t ever seen a complete episode of “The Hills.” And Abby, well, she’s thankful she has coworkers happy to indulge her guilty pleasures (including, but not limited to: reality television, celebrity magazines and so-bad-they’re-good romantic comedies).
Have you ever been to a crazy celebrity book signing? Leave us your stories here!
One of our favorite books from the upcoming May issue of BookPage is Alan Bradley’s debut novel, Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. In Sweetness we meet Flavia de Luce, an 11-year-old aspiring chemist with a passion for poison and intrigue. When a series of inexplicable events strikes Buckshaw, the decaying English mansion that Flavia and her family call home, Flavia is delighted to get to the bottom of things.
70-year-old author Alan Bradley has written a memoir and collaborated on a work of nonfiction, but this brilliant mystery is his first novel. Fans of Flavia de Luce will be delighted to hear that Sweetness is just the first in a series following Bradley’s charming new heroine.
To read our review of Sweetness—and get a sneak peek of the May issue—click here.
To enter to win a free copy of Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, leave a comment (by May 1) that includes the title of your favorite mystery novel.
UPDATE: This contest has ended, but you can still join the discussion by commenting on your favorite mystery.