Thursday, September 29, 2016

Princeton Book Festival #PPLBookFest

Previously in my life....(last weekend)

It's hard to explain to anyone who isn't a book person what it is like to walk into a book festival or the floor of the ALA or AASL exhibit hall and see swarms of your idols, your rockstars, your people. That happened to me again yesterday at the Princeton Book Festival.  Yes, it is nearly 200 miles away. Yes, yesterday in particular, it was a little challenging getting down there because the thruway was actually closed for one whole exit and we had to take a detour but it is only 20 minutes from my grandmother's home and close enough for my son to meet up with a camp friend.  That all said, it is a win-Win-WIN situation.  I like that very much.

The first person we met was Denis Markell.  A debut novelist (you know I like my debut people) whose book I recognized thanks to Junior Library Guild.  I am always telling authors how lucky they are to get on JLG's list because for people like me who don't have an assistant in the library, I heavily rely on JLG for collection development.

A little further down in the tent was a woman who gave me goosebumps.  I was SO nervous, I couldn't speak intelligently.  NEWBERY winner, Rebecca Stead.  I actually knew she would be there so I "broke in and entered" Mrs. Kelliher's 5th grade classroom and "stole" her copies of When You Reach Me and Liar and Spy so Rebecca could sign them. I was in awe and couldn't speak coherently. One year a 4th grade teacher used her Scholastic points to purchase multiple copies of Liar and Spy so I could run a book group with her students.  I love that book. LOL I love that book so much that now I have TWO copies.  I had no idea that I already had my own copy back at school that I bought another one for Rebecca to sign. It's all good...


Meeting Melanie Conklin and Gita Varadarajan was like meeting old friends.  Even though we hadn't met before we were already connected.

I told Chris Grabenstein that we were coming so he had a present set aside for me!  Woohoo!  The audio of Welcome to Wonderland: Home, Sweet Motel.  Zack and I started listening to it and it is super fun!  Book birthday:  October 4!

Leaping with Newbery honor winner, Joan Bauer! I read Soar in Ocean City, MD this summer.

I bought two copies of Kelly Barnhill's book (one for me and one for Zack) because it's definitely on my short list for Newbery. 


This guy, Brian Biggs, was fun!  He's got a whole series of board books and community helper books based on "Tinyville Town" (the newest one not out yet is about a librarian!).  I bought this one thinking I might share it at one of our assemblies this year.  We had fun leaping, especially since Zack was not in the mood to be photographer anymore.

Ahhh...the incomparable Caldecott honor Lauren Castillo!  I nearly scared her off her seat when we first met but have never leapt together!  We finally got our first leap in at the festival!  So fun!  I'm looking forward to more in the future! Lauren must have been practicing because look at the air on that one!

So I haven't read this book yet but want to!  I have been recommending it to sixth graders, though! And I've been following Karen Romano Young on Instagram so it was fun to meet. I bought the book and added it to my forever growing TBR pile!

A series of leap pictures with Ame Dyckman, Zachariah O'Hora and Adam Lehrhaupt! So fun!  I had prepped Ame through Twitter since we had leaped together once before at the Meltdown in Northhampton.

After we said goodbye to Zack's friend, the festival was winding down but I wasn't ready to say ciao to Princeton yet.

Wait! Didn't my friend Rachel from the Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga, tell me about these new books:

Check it out! I spied them at the Bookhouse in Albany!

Yes!  And she loves them!  Well, John Marciano and I got talking first about Madeline (and Madeline's says Merci) and then about so much more--Middle grade fiction, emerging and new readers, Troy, NY, book camps, focus groups...we probably could have talked for longer but Zack was getting a little impatient with me, especially when he had to take ONE more leaping picture of his mother.  Oh, the life of a leaping librarian's son.

It was another well worth visit south in spite of the thruway being closed for an exit.  But we made the best of it with our nice detour through the small towns of Sullivan County, only sadly arriving to the festival over an hour after we had anticipated.  That's ok.  Many books purchased later and new friends made, we are happy and looking forward to our third annual trip down in September 2017.

1 comment:

  1. Excellent summary -- and I love all your leaping photos. We must get a photo together in 2017 when you return. We are going to make it just as great (if not better).

    p.s./I am the librarian behind the PPL Twitter account, so you kind of know me even if you don't think you do. I am also on Twitter as @JanieH