Three brilliant books that arrived in the Kids section since last we spoke:
1. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
Oh man. Maggie Stiefvater is brilliant. We all know that already. Now she's given us the third book in her Raven Cycle. It's brilliant and now I might die before the last one comes out.
2. Once Upon an Alphabet by Oliver Jeffers
It's Oliver Jeffers. He does a little story for each letter. V is my favorite. Hands down.
3. My True Love Gave to Me edited by Stephanie Perkins
Stephanie Perkins, author of Anna and the French Kiss, is enough of a sell but with authors like Kelly Link and Holly Black this is the perfect winter anthology.
I spent most of my Saturday working the Booksmith table at the Boston Book Festival. This was the third year I worked it and we had, by far, the best weather and, by far, the biggest crowd.
But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Three other booksellers and I arrived down at Copley Square just after 8 AM. It was chilly and early. Coffee was much needed and I was barely functioning. We shuffled tiredly into the beautiful Trinity church and were welcomed by a most glorious sight.
1,000 Rick Riordan books sitting on tabled primed for signing.
I was not so tired anymore.
This wasn't a particularly thrilling sight to Peter and Clarissa who'd been there the day before to set them up but I was pretty excited about it. I've never been fortunate enough to be in the store when Rick Riordan has come in to sign stock so I was ready. Two things happened.
1. He signed 1,000 book in 30 minutes. He. Is. Magic.
2. I didn't say a word to him until he left and then it was a hurried "Thank you so much!"
Doesn't matter. I spent about 35 minutes in a room with Rick Riordan.
And that half an hour is what made the festival for me. Not just because I'm nothing if not a fangirl and I got to be there. It kept us busy most of the day. I got to stand at the end of the table and just keep refilling piles of his books. I got to talk to people about the books. I got to see the kids in Camp Halfblood/Jupiter tee shirts and camp necklaces and the one girl fully dressed as Annabeth. They were excited and that plus the adrenaline was way better than the coffee.
The kids book person in me was just so thrilled. We had a line for a solid two hours after Riordan's keynote and sold somewhere around 700 of his books and a lot of them were to people who already had them. It was amazing. And I loved that it was a kids author.
It's so easy to get discouraged when you're a kids book person. There are so many people who are determined to write it off and say that it doesn't count as "real literature" or that it's not worth anyone's time. When a book gets big then come all of the articles ripping it to shreds and explaining to us why it's not teaching kids anything. Sometimes that makes it hard.
To see people, most but not all kids, standing in line twice for Rick Riordan, the first to get into his talk (there was a line when we arrived at 8) and the second to buy tee books, was brilliant. It makes me a little more proud of what I do.
And I just really wanted a kids event to win this not-competition competition.
We totally did.
Thank you, Rick Riordan.
P.S. We still have signed copies of Blood of Olympus and Percy Jackson's Greek Gods come and get some!