Wow, a week ago I was in San Diego for my second Comic Con, and I had just as much fun as I did the first time! I am exhausted, however, and I’m glad it’s the weekend and I can catch up on some sleep. But it was all worth it. My goal was to do as much book stuff as possible, and while I didn’t get to do everything I wanted to (it’s nearly impossible to accomplish that!), I did come home with several amazing piles of books, and I got to meet some amazing authors as well. I managed to go to all three publishers’ panels (Simon & Schuster, Penguin and HarperTeen/HarperVoyager), but for some reason I didn’t make it to any author panels this year. Boo on me!! Next year I will definitely make more time for those. I had both kids with me, and I didn’t want to desert them entirely, nor were they interested in the book stuff as much as I was, so I compromised and did some things that they wanted to do too.
Just for a taste, here are the authors (and these are the writers of books only, I’m not even including the hundreds of comic book/graphic novel talent that was there) that attended Comic Con this year (and forgive me if I leave anyone out): Jeff and Ann VanderMeer, Lev Grossman, Charles Yu, David Brin, Jim Butcher, Rachel Caine, Jason Hough, Marie Lu, Jonathan Maberry, Shannon Hale, Marissa Meyer, Katherine Harbour, John Peck, Cornelia Funke, Tony DiTerlizzi, Ben Tripp, Danielle Page, Christina Lauren, Kresley Cole, Alice Clayton, John Scalzi, Seanan McGuire, Richard Kadrey, Thomas Sniegoski, Amber Benson, Greg van Eekhout, Patrick Rothfuss, Robin Hobb, Joe Abercrombie, Raymond E. Feist, Django Wexler, Morgan Rhodes, Sam Sykes, Brent Weeks, George R. R. Martin, Anne Rice, James Frey, Chris Weitz, James Dashner, Andrew Kaplan, Melissa De La Cruz, Veronica Roth, Walter Jury, Leigh Bardugo, Laini Taylor, Max Brooks, Chip Kidd, Deborah Harkness, Marjorie Liu, S.J. Harper, Tonya Hurley, Chris Marie Green, Daniel H. Wilson, Andy Weir, Daniel Price, M.D. Waters, Nick Cole, Emily Lloyd-Jones, Romina Russell, Michael Johnston, Pierce Brown, Benny Zelkowitcz, Cecil Castellucci, Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodriguez, Paul Pope, Dav Pilkey, Rachel Renee Russell, Brandon Mull, Pseudonymous Bosch, P. Craig Russell, Kami Garcia, Tessa Gratton, Tahereh Mafi, Natalie Parker, C.J. Redwine, Brendan Reichs, Margaret Stohl, Guillermo del Toro and Scott Westerfeld. (Not to mention all the authors who popped up at booth signings!!)
Before we get to the books, here’s some stuff that happened:
My daughter’s costume was a HIT. She dressed up as Benson from The Regular Show, and literally got stopped every five minutes for photo requests, which thrilled her to no end! Plus, she got to meet the voice actors from the show and they loved her costume as well. She even had employees from Cartoon Network come up and compliment her and take her photo! My son, who always chooses the least obvious path, dressed up as Edgar Allan Poe, and he got a fair amount of attention as well!
And now, the books. The publishers who attended were very generous this year, although you did have to work a bit harder to score some of the books. It’s all about priorities at Comic Con. You really have to figure out what’s important to you, because you just can’t get to everything. I was super lucky (and organized!) and managed to get this group of books signed by some awesome authors:
Sublime by Christina Lauren. I have a digital ARC of this book, but I was so excited to learn that the authors were going to be signing copies of the physical ARC. I lined up an hour early to get this puppy!
Clean by Alex Hughes. Hughes is a new author for me, and she was signing copies of this first book in her Mindspace Investigation series so I had to grab one! Urban fantasy, folks! My new go-to genre. Looks like book #4 in the series comes out later this year.
Red Rising by Pierce Brown. Oh my lord, I got to meet Pierce Brown! One of my favorite reads last year was Red Rising, and I was sincerely hoping that they’d be giving away ARCs of Golden Son at Comic Con (they weren’t), but it was thrilling to meet the man nonetheless.
California Bones by Greg van Eekhout. I was about half way through this when I went to Greg’s book signing, and I was able to gush about how much I was loving this book. Tor was giving away copies, so I have a signed book that I’m giving away here. If you live in the US and you love well-written urban fantasy, I highly recommend entering my giveaway!
Mortal Danger by Ann Aguirre. This was one of the signings I stumbled upon while wandering the publishers’ aisles at Comic Con. You see? You just can’t plan everything! So happy I got to meet the author and get a copy of this book, which comes out this week, I believe.
Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren. I’ve heard so many great things about this series, and even though contemporary really isn’t my thing, I need a change now and then, and since the authors were signing at the booth, of course I hopped in line. And they are super nice!
Half a King by Joe Abercrombie. I admit, I have never read an Abercrombie book, but I’m going to start right now, especially after meeting him. He was simply adorable (and I mean that he was extremely nice as well as adorable—I mean, take a look at his author photo!)
The Accidental Highwayman by Ben Tripp. Here’s another new-to-me author, but I couldn’t resist. The blurbs for this book mention the words “swashbuckling,” “The Princess Bride,” and “Neil Gaiman.” Now, how can you pass it up?
Precious Blood by Tonya Hurley. I’ve been curious about this book, and I took the opportunity to purchase a copy and meet the author. The second book in the series is now out.
Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer. Both Jeff and his wife were at Comic Con, and even though I already have a copy of this book (still haven’t read it, though), I wanted to grab a signed copy (future giveaway, perhaps?) What a lovely book! It’s beautiful produced. However, I was less than thrilled with the book signing experience, unfortunately. I don’t think VanderMeer even glanced up at me when I got to the front of the line. Maybe he was tired!! Anyway, it was weird, and he was the only author I met who seemed bored and unhappy to be signing books.
Zodiac by Romina Russell. This was one of Penguin’s booth signings, and I found out (too late for some other books) that you had to procure a line ticket in the morning in order to meet the author. Luckily I caught on and was able to get my ticket to this signing. I had to choose between Marie Lu and Romina Russell, since they only allowed one ticket per day, and those two authors were both signing on Sunday. I’ve been intrigued by this book and really wanted to get a copy.
Through the Woods by Emily Carroll. This graphic novel was highlighted in the Penguin panel on Thursday night, and I was so excited to check it out, so I made sure to schedule the signing. This is one of only three books that I actually had to purchase at Comic Con, but I was happy to do so. It’s a gorgeously produced and executed book, which I’ve already read (stay tuned for my review). It’s also the very first graphic novel I’ve read, people! (I’m not kidding.)
Lock In by John Scalzi. OK, Scalzi wasn’t exactly at Comic Con (he disagreed with their harassment policy, I think), but he did do an off-sight reading of Lock In and went to a couple of unofficial parties and signed books (none of which I attended. I wanted to go to the reading, but I had a conflict with something my kids wanted to do). However, I stalked the Tor booth and found out that they were running contests every day to win this book. Luckily, I managed to win on my first try, so I was pretty excited!
Robogenesis by Daniel H. Wilson. This was another signing that I didn’t plan on going to, but since it happened to be going on when I was near the Random House booth, and the line wasn’t too bad, I jumped in. I have the first book in this series, but I haven’t read it yet. Now I’m going to find time to read both books.
And then I got another bunch of books that I am over the moon about:
Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix. This is another book I purchased. Quirk wasn’t giving away books at their booth (they were selling everything), but when I spotted Horrorstör, I snatched up a copy. It officially won’t be on sale until September, and I am anxious to read it before then.
The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter, Shutter by Courtney Alameda, Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes, Maplecroft by Cherie Priest, The Bodies We Wear by Jeyn Roberts, Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, Lailah by Nikki Kelly, Storm Siren by Mary Weber, The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blaedel, Made for You by Melissa Marr, Brood by Chase Novak, The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O’Brien, The Jewel by Amy Ewing, The Clockwork Dagger by Beth Cato, The Deep by Nick Cutter, The Young World by Chris Weitz, The Vampires of Manhattan by Melissa de la Cruz, and The Walled City by Ryan Graudin. OK, I am super excited about all of these books! I was actually turned down by the publisher for a couple of these on Edelweiss—Brood and Broken Monsters—so I find it kind of funny that I ended up with copies of them anyway! I knew Shutter was going to be at Comic Con and I think it’s the first book I picked up, woo woo! The Walled City was a surprise, it just popped up on the publisher’s table one morning so I grabbed a copy. Maplecroft, people!! I can’t wait to read this one. It’s received some really good trade reviews so far. And Red Queen, well, that was a WoW pick for me recently, and I just about died when I received a copy at the HarperTeen/HarperVoyager panel!
I also got these awesome books (which I will not be linking up because it’s taking so long!!):
So, yeah. A very successful Comic Con, as far as books go. Next year, more author panels and more movie/tv stuff as well. Big thanks to all the publishers who were generously handing out copies this year! Now, I must go read. Because, so many books:-)