How the hall looks from the back, near the autographing area
This was the first full day of BEA, which meant getting up earlier and an even longer time waiting in lines and walking around the exhibit hall. Val, Kalli, and I headed in earlier than everyone else (I think Val wanted to get tickets for something). Thankfully the people there had figured out how to NOT create a mob again. They actually made lines for it, and we got spots decently close to the entrance. I was glad of it, because my first stop was Hachette and Little Brown for the Laini Taylor sampler packs again (remember, I had missed them yesterday). While we waited, the rest of the squad joined us, and I figured out my game plan. I was READY by the time 9 a.m. hit and everyone started filing into the hall.
I quickly went to Little Brown, and then I headed to Penguin because they had dropped Our Chemical Hearts. Kalli had been with me as we walked, but I lost her because I was in such a rush afterward to get over to the autographing area for Audrey Coulthurst’s signing. I figured there’d be a huge line for it, given how big Of Fire and Stars is already even though it doesn’t come out until November (BECAUSE F/F FANTASY ROMANCE, FTW). But maybe I overestimated it being big compared to other books at BEA, WHO KNOWS. The line was fairly short by the time I caught up to Mishma and we joined the people waiting. It was fun chatting with Mishma for a bit. I could’ve gone and gotten a ticket for Metaltown like I had originally planned on doing, but I decided against it. (I DNFed Glass Arrow a long time ago so it wasn’t a huge loss to miss this one). Basically today was the day for Macmillan ticket drops (which did not always go well, which you might have heard about on social media already).
After the signing, Mishma and I basically just wandered around. We really didn’t have anything to do. Jennifer Niven’s signing wasn’t until 1 p.m., and I knew I wasn’t gonna line up for that one until around 12:30. While we were near the Bloomsbury booth, Sabrina from The Forest of Words and Pages recognized me and said hi! I ADORE this lady, and I’m so glad I got to spend so much time with her throughout this week. We spent quite a bit of time chatting, and then we parted ways. (And I met up with her again later that day near the Disney booth anyway, which I am mentioning now because hell if I remember when that was). At some point, I picked up a copy of Girl in Pieces. I’m super stoked about this one! I’m pretty sure I also hopped in the line for a Bloomsbury drop of The Edge of Everything and Stealing Snow. (I *think* it was before Penguin’s signings. But oh well, if it wasn’t! It’s a lot to remember!) A few of my friends and I almost didn’t get them, after being told by a person in the line that they’d cut it off. But someone talked to the actual publicists, and they were like, “well, they lied, because we didn’t do that.” Cheers to Bloomsbury’s wonderful publicists for keeping that line manageable! Finally, it was about time for us to go over to Penguin, because they were having ALL THE SIGNINGS EVER at the same time!
As soon as I got a ticket for Jennifer Niven’s signing, though, I left and joined the line for Tahereh Mafi’s. Since I met Jennifer last year at BEA, I really wanted to make sure I met Tahereh more than anything. So I stayed there, even though her signing started later than Jennifer’s. While there, I wish I would’ve spent time talking to Gillian (Writer of Wrongs), since she was right next to me. But I think I just needed a timeout, a break from the loud atmosphere. This was one of the few times I was by myself throughout the week, and I didn’t mind it so much. The curse of being an introvert! Danielle (Love at First Page) was walking by, and stopped to talk. She showed us a video she had of the Macmillan stampede of 2016! Seriously, everyone wanted tickets for Marissa Meyer and Sarah Porter’s signings, so I’m actually kinda glad I skipped out on going. Though, I am sad I missed my chance at Vassa in the Night, since it was one of those books I REALLY didn’t want to leave BEA without. But I didn’t linger too long on it, because the line started moving, and I was going to meet one of my fave authors!!
Unfortunately, they weren’t doing pictures (I do have one of her signing someone else’s book, though). The guy in front of me had somehow missed when they handed out tickets. I cannot remember where he’d gone, but he’d been there, and he still went up even though he wasn’t sure they would let him meet Tahereh without a ticket. I really, really wish I’d spoken up, something I regretted the instant I didn’t (I don’t know if I was really thinking at the time since all I could process was I’M GONNA MEET TAHEREH MAFI OMGGGG). BUT thankfully the second publicist said, “oh, that’s fine!” when the first said no, and he was able to keep going. And then it was my turn! Even if I’ve read and loved an author’s books, I still never really know what to say to them. If I say I loooove your books, it’s probably not going to make a memorable impression since that’s what I think most people say. But that’s what I did! She was so sweet about it, though, and I cannot WAIT to read Furthermore. Then I hopped back over in Jennifer Niven’s line. I am really… upset about it, because her publicist started chatting her up when it was my turn, and then she ignored me. After she signed my book, that was it. I was like SERIOUSLY???? SADFACE.
Afterward, I think I went to the Abrams booth because someone messaged me earlier that Maresi had been set out. I’d never heard of this book before it was announced in the PW article, but it sounds so good! And Nori told me it gave her Grave Mercy vibes, so I’m even more eager to read it. And then I headed back to Hatchette because they were handing out the books they’d had in the dice game the day before (and you didn’t have to play a game this time, thank God). I grabbed the only one I wanted, Frostblood. I set my things against the outside of a booth and then remembered that Val had mentioned something about not being able to get that book. The line had disappeared when I went up to the booth again. I was afraid they’d think I was greedy or something (if they remembered that I had juuuust been there), so I asked if it was okay to pick up the book for a friend. Then I met up with Val, Shannon, and Rashika as they got done with a signing at Macmillan. I gave Val her book, and then headed to Soho Teen’s booth (which was WAAAAAY over yonder) with Shannon and Rashika. Either that, or I met up with them since they were already there. WHO KNOWS?? I didn’t necessarily want Adam’s book, since I DNFed More Happy Than Not (PUT DOWN THE PITCHFORKS, PEOPLE :p). So I was gonna get it signed for Val, except she made it before it was our turn, so I gave her have my place in line and left for my own signing!
Let me just say how much I freaking HATE the way Harlequin does their signings! I wanted to meet Heather Graham, only one of my all-time favorite authors. Except… I didn’t realize that she was signing with FIVE other authors! ARE YOU KIDDING ME. Not only did I have to wait in line longer than I thought I would, I ended up having to get all 6 of the damn books there. For the record, yes, I could’ve said no. But how the hell do you look an author in the face and say you don’t want their book? UUUUUGH. It’s so fucking awkward. Luckily, all of them immediately asked whether or not I wanted the book signed or personalized, so I was able to get out of having my name in books I didn’t actually want. (I kept a few after I read the synopses, but the rest I put in the tote bags Rashika and I left in random places on BookCon day). Meeting Heather was so worth the extra worry over the signing, though. SO WORTH IT! I love her books so much, and she’s one of the authors I’ve been reading since I was in high school. I’m not caught up in the series of her newest release, Haunted Destiny, but I can’t wait to get back to it.
I wasn’t sure when I left the signing and moved onto Harper’s booth right next door whether or not I’d be able to get the drop I had missed on Wednesday. But I made it, yay! I grabbed The Female of the Species (MINDY MCGINNIS IS A FAVE OF MINE!!!!) and The Thousandth Floor. Afterward, I met up with the squad while they waited near Macmillan for the Flatiron Cocktail party. Bekka from Pretty Deadly Reviews was sitting next to us and waiting for it too, so I got to actually spend some time chatting with her before the party started. (We’d exchanged a quick greeting and hug before the OFAS signing earlier in the day, so it was really nice to just chat for a bit). It was super cool to be invited to something like this (even though I didn’t get a drink, waaah), and they gave out tote bags filled with four books (two of which I left sitting in a tote bag at BookCon too. Haha). And one of them was Caraval!!! I was so happy I got it so I wouldn’t have to fight for a ticket tomorrow morning for Stephanie’s signing. I also kept The Guineveres by Sarah Domet because it sounded interesting.
We had a little bit of time to chill when we got back to the hotel before Shannon and I needed to leave for Macmillan’s publisher party. Being invited to this was completely unexpected, and I spent so many days freaking out about it. What to wear, who will be there, telling myself to actually SOCIALIZE with people. And I did do that! A little bit. Hahahaha. I tried some white wine (too strong for me), and one of the bite-sized foods waiters were bringing around (it was gross, not eating that again). I had kind of thought they’d feed us more than that. Thanks, Mac! Shannon and I spent most of our time hanging out with Danielle and Mary from Mary Had a Little Book Blog!! I LOVE these ladies so much. They are fabulous and fun, and I’m so glad I got to meet Mary and spend time with Danielle again. We took some pictures in front of the infamous Fierce Reads backdrop. And I was pretty shy, so I mostly listened to the conversations, but I was laughing so much and it was one of my favorite moments from BEA 16. I also got to see Bekka AGAIN for a bit, and Gillian. I also met Brittany from Brittany’s Book Rambles, Katie from Katie’s Book Blog, and Katie from Polished Page Turners. And I FINALLY introduced myself to Brittany from The Book Addict’s Guide, as well as formally introduced myself to Becca from Reading Teen, lololol. I met her and Brittany from Please Feed the Bookworm on Wednesday but never actually talked to her, so IT WAS A MUST, OKAY?! Haha, I pretty much spent my time with only a few bloggers. Next time (if there is a next time, of course), I’ll take advantage of the event and chat it up with the publicists and authors! And not let the shyness get in the way. :(
I did see Marissa Meyer again. She was doing a little impromptu signing for Heartless (which was one of the books we got in the adorable Fierce Reads totes they handed out at the end. We also got 1984 [cannot wait to find out what this is all about], The Lovely Reckless, and Last Seen Leaving). I was like, I don’t know if you remember me, but we met at your Winter tour stop in Michigan. And she was like, at Petoskey? I said yes, and then told her how excited I was for the book. (I must read this soon. I’ve heard interesting things already and have been super curious about it, so it’ll probably happen next month). I also got another lovely picture with her!
When it was pretty much time to go, I noticed Leigh Bardugo was by herself. I could tell she was exhausted and in pain, but I REALLY wanted to meet her (I saw her last year at BEA but for like 5 seconds) and get a picture. So I asked her if I could, and she was SO nice about it. I told her I had meant to talk to her earlier, and she was like, oh you should have! (NEXT TIME, I SWEAR). Honestly, I figured her and Marissa would mostly be held up by all the other bloggers there, which did happen, so I don’t know if I’d have had much time to chat with either of them anyway. But I so wish I would’ve, even if for a few seconds! It’s okay, though, because this precious picture is something I will cherish.
Shannon wanted a picture too, but someone came up to Leigh and stole her attention, and we didn’t want to ask again because it was definitely time to start heading out. Which SADNESS and also rude af of the girl who did it. When we left the restaurant, Shannon and I were like WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT FOOOOOOD?? We considered walking in any direction to see what there was, but the more I thought about it, I was like, I really don’t wanna do that. I do not know the city of Chicago, and I wasn’t even sure if we’d find anything good where we were, so we just went back to the hotel and decided to get delivery. Except… Chicago sucks and everything closes down early. It took us a long time to find something, even with Rashika’s help. We finally ordered some Mexican food (which was actually pretty good, except that I had been set on pizza so it was a bit disappointing, plus it was so goddman expensive). The night didn’t end on a high note for reasons, but we did all talk for a bit (minus some of the other roommates), and I went to bed excited for a more chill and relaxing day of BEA.
On Monday, I will be recapping the last day of BEA! And then I'll be recapping BookCon on Tuesday, along with sharing highlights and things I did this year that I was too shy/scared to do BEA 15. I'll also be giving away two fantasy ARCs in that post, so be on the lookout! :D