L.A. Times Festival of Books 2014: Day One and Day Two Recap Vlogs!

Guys, doctor I just had SUCH an amazing weekend. This weekend was the annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at U.S.C., where the entire weekend is dedicated to the amazing culture of reading. It’s one of my favorite weekends of this year, and this year was no disappointment.

There was a team of five us: me, Sylvia from Fangirl Feeels, our friends Cassandra and Alexandra and my sister, Jessica. We had our game plans, and despite minor hiccups along the way, we managed to do everything that we wanted to do.

I met (and met again, for some) amazing authors this weekend: John Green (OHMYGOD), Rainbow Rowell, Lauren Oliver, Marissa Meyer, Sarah J Maas, Robin Benway, Veronica Roth, Lauren Myracle, Leigh Bardugo, Deb Caletti, Kiersten White, Andrew Smith and Stephanie Perkins.

But I won’t keep you from seeing my awesome vlogs. I vlogged while at the Fest so you get some pretty awkward and hilarious moments from me, a short video of my conversation with John Green and…lots of awkwardness haha.

Check it out!

Day One!

Day Two!

Yay! I hope you enjoyed seeing the awesomeness that was my weekend!

I managed to grab extra copies of Cinder, Anna and the French Kiss and Fangirl for a giveaway. There will NOT be a giveaway for the month of April (as of now), but there is a HUGE giveaway coming for my Blog Birthday in May so keep an eye out to see how you can get your hands on these books!

Oh! And don’t forget you can check out ALL the pictures on the What A Nerd Girl Says Facebook page here!

Happy Reading Everyone!

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Book of the Week-Panic by Lauren Oliver

I am very very happy to bring you this week’s Book of the Week. It released this past Tuesday and I’m so excited to be finally reviewing it. I read it back in…like September or October so I’m glad to finally be sharing my thoughts on it!

Panic by Lauren Oliver  

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble Amazon / Book Depository

This review is based on an advanced reader’s copy given to me in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my review in the slightest, view and everything said here is my honest opinion. Thank you Edelweiss and HarperCollins for the ARC. 

Genre:

Young Adult, ambulance Contemporary

Part of a Series?:

Standalone Novel

You May Like if You Liked:

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Age Recommendation:

13+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a dead-end town of 12,000 people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do.

Heather never thought she would compete in Panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She’d never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.

Dodge has never been afraid of Panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game, he’s sure of it. But what he doesn’t know is that he’s not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.

For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them—and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.

My Review: 

I am so glad this book is finally releasing this week! I got this ARC way back in the fall and I’ve been sitting on this review to post it closer to the actual release date of the book. Now, with it coming out in a few days, I’m excited to finally review it, and share it with you guys.

The thing that I’ve always loved about Lauren Oliver is that she has amazing ideas. She has a very creative and imaginative mind and I think that continues in this novel. In Before I Fall, you have a teenage girl reliving the last day of her life, seven times, trying to get it right. In the Delirium trilogy, you have our society, but twisted, convinced that love is a disease that needs to be cured. Now, in Panic, we have a small town and a game called Panic, where a bunch of graduated high school seniors compete in random, and often dangerous, tasks in order to get their hands on a very large amount of money.

Its an incredible idea and I remember when I met her last March, right after Requiem had been released, I was excited about this idea.

And I think she pulled it off. It wasn’t quite what I expected but I love the idea of it. I think maybe sometimes Lauren Oliver has these amazing ideas but has a hard time really getting them on paper. While I looked forward to the actual story, and the different tasks that were part of Panic, I had a hard time connecting to the characters. I just didn’t FEEL for them, if you know what I mean. Not the way I felt for Samantha in Before I Fall. I thought the game, and what it entailed and the drama that unfolded around it was much more exciting than the characters involved in the game.

I think my biggest beef with the novel is that Panic starts so fast, but the novel doesn’t seem to pick up its quickness with it. Everything in the story was already in motion but I didn’t feel like I was really into the story until about a third of the way in. It took some time for my brain to catch up with the story.

That being said, its a very fast paced book with a wonderful concept and I loved the idea of Panic. What a crazy idea. I don’t live in a small town, I live in the suburbs outside of Anaheim and Los Angeles so there’s really always stuff to do here (even if it can get expensive) and I can’t imagine anyone here coming up with this crazy, insane game. But I can imagine someone in a small town where there’s nothing to do coming up with it, and so that part seems real. Crazy but real. I do think that Lauren Oliver captured reality well, and even though it was a weird concept, she made it real. Sometimes I feel authors try to write something a bit out of the ordinary and it doesn’t feel authentic or that it could be real. This book definitely did.

The Last Word

 I would say, definitely read it. From what I’ve seen of other reviews, its sort of a hit or miss. I liked it but I didn’t love it. I thought it was a great idea, a very creative and imaginative concept. In my opinion, the characters fell a little flat and maybe needed a little bit more OOMF to make them more real to me, though there were moments when I did feel for them. All in all, I enjoyed it, and it was easy to get through but its not a re-read anytime soon.

*****

Have you read Panic? What did you think? Share in the comments!

Tuesday Top Ten-Books to Look Forward to in 2014!

My loves! I am so sorry, sildenafil I apologize over and over for my lack of effort on my blog. I truly do. I would like to blame something legitimate like school or NaNoWriMo or something but truly…I just didn’t have the inspiration to work on it.

But I’m back! I promise! Today I’m stealing the topic of the Broke and Bookish’s Top Ten Tuesday post and doing Books to Look Forward to in 2014.

Unfortunately thats kind of hard to narrow down to ten. Really hard. Like, website like this impossibly hard. I read so many authors and so many books that I just look forward to SO many releases.

Even narrowing it down to January to May wasn’t totally helpful. Sigh.

So there are …fourteen books on the list. Sorry :( But hopefully that will get you excited for SO many awesome releases coming in the new year!

Honorable Mentions:

These are honorable mentions because I’ve already read one of them, and I have ARCs of the other! So I want to draw attention to them, since they’ll be releasing in early 2014 BUT I’ll have already read them!

Clicking on the author’s name will take you to their website, and clicking on the book title will take you to the Amazon Page AND clicking the book cover will take you to the GoodReads page! I’m nothing, if not completely thorough ;)

Afterparty by Ann Stampler 

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Expected Release: January 7th

Ann’s Where It Began blew me away, and I’m eager to dive into this book and be blown away again. She has a way of capturing the teen outlook but also writes an intelligent and compelling novel. Good girl Emma decides that she wants to break free, and gets involved with Siobhan, whose friendship is fun at first, until it takes a turn, and things become intoxicating and dangerous. I can’t wait for it. Afterparty is going to be a blast!

Going Rogue by Robin Benway

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Expected Release: January 14th

The first book of this series, Also Known As, was SUPER funny, and addicting to read. Maggie is part of a spy network with her parents, and her specialty is breaking locks, whether on doors or to safes, etc. Then she gets her own assignment, to go undercover at an upscale high school, and hilarity ensues. Its full of action and fun spy stuff BUT it just makes you laugh so hard, and Maggie is a fun character, AND there’s cute boys. Win!

Panic by Lauren Oliver

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Expected Release: March 4th

This one I’ve already read :) I can’t wait to share my review with you all. A departure from her dystopian series, Delirium, Lauren Oliver takes us into the contemporary world again, with a twist. Heather lives in Carp, where nothing ever happens, except for the game Panic every summer. The kids spend the entire year raising money for a ridiculous prize amount (think in the THOUSANDS) and compete in dangerous, scary and, often times, illegal tasks in order to win the game. Heather didn’t expect to play when it came her turn, but that money could be a way out. Dodge, a fellow classmate, has been looking forward to Panic, and he’s determined to get the right outcome. I think you’ll like this one. If you were disappointed with the end of the Delirium series like I was, I think this will help with Lauren Oliver a bit :)

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Now the actual list of ten, erm, eleven books I’m looking forward to in 2014…up until May, at least!

11. Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

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Expected Release: May 13th

I just discovered Stephanie this year! Anna and the French Kiss and especially Lola and the Boy Next Door are GREAT YA contemporary novels that I totally recommend, a thousand times. I am full of SO much excitement for this one because of all great the others have been. In this novel, we are going to meet Isla and Josh and I think come to find a new meaning of the phrase “happily ever after”. And of course, we will see Anna, Etienne, Lola and Cricket again, which makes me very happy. I think that Stephanie will tell a great story, as usual with twists and turns and surprises and enough heart pounding and sigh-worthy scenes to keep us all SO happy!

10. Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout 

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Expected Release: April 15th

I am So excited about this one because honestly, I just discovered JLA in May and she has yet to disappoint me. Her storytelling is fantastic; she makes me laugh, and feel all swooning but she throws in these kickass action scenes, and then she has the most sarcastic and hilarious characters. So I’m really anxious to dive into a new series with her. Don’t Look Back follows Samantha who has it all, until she disappears, and then reappears with no memory of who she is or how she got lost. When she figures out that she was the  “mean girl”, she’s determined to have this second chance. Unfortunately her best friend is still missing…Sounds awesome right? She never disappoints and I can’t wait to read it.

 9. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs 

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Expected Release: January 14th

Okay, I’m totally reading the first book right now, and maybe I won’t like and maybe I’ll have no desire to read this …but I honestly doubt it. So many people I know really liked this book and I just love Ransom as a person. His instagram, tumblr and twitter posts keep me laughing, and he’s super interactive with his fans. And he’s handsome. Not that this has anything to do with his book, it was just a notable fact about him. Moving on, I am looking forward to this release because I’m already enjoying Miss Peregrine’s a lot AND he’ll be touring for this book and will, of course, be signing in Los Angeles so yay! I keep missing him, and I want formally meet him finally!

8. Cress by Marissa Meyer 

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Expected Release: February 4th

I just finished Scarlet, the second book, about a week ago, and I love this series already. I put off reading it FOR so long and I have no idea why. I think it was the cover to be honest. I get turned off on books because of the covers quite often, and I’m often times proven wrong. But I still do it. Anyway, I read Cinder and Scarlet and now I’m very excited for Cress. Marissa Meyer takes the whole science fiction, fairy tale retellings to an incredible level, and her stories and characters are awesome. One minute they’re super badass and sci-fi-ish (that’s a word now) and then the next, they’re totally reminding you of Cinderella and Red Riding Hood. Its awesome. This isn’t the final book, its the climax to the final book, Winter (2015), so you know its going to be SO GOOD.

7. Summer State of Mind by Jen Calonita

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Expected Release: April 22nd  

I absolutely adore Jen Calonita. Her books are quick and easy reads, with laughter, cute boys, but often times, serious teen problems as well. Her standalone novel, Sleepaway Girls, was super cute, about a girl going to camp as a CIT and learning to be independent of her dominant best friend. Of course, rivalries happen, cute boys make the summer interesting and hilarity and disaster ensues. I absolutely LOVED it. Now there’s a sequel, called Summer State of Mind, where they’re returning to Camp Whispering Pines and I’m SO excited. She writes such fun novels and I don’t think I’m alone in that desire to go to camp. I always want to go to camp as a kid and was never able to so I like to live vicariously through this. Definitely one to look forward to.

6. Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

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Expected Release: February 4th

When I picked up Shatter Me, I had done so because Tahereh Mafi kept popping up everywhere, at all these events (though I haven’t met her officially either!) and her name just kept popping up to me, and so I decided to check out Shatter Me, even though I was getting kind of tired of dystopian. I’m glad I gave this one a chance because Juliette is an awesome character and we’ve really seen her grow so much in this series, and I hope we continue to see that in Ignite Me. I also think Tahereh Mafi has a way of telling a brand new story in that familiar dystopian archetype that we’ve grown to know so well. She has surprises and twists that keep you hooked til the end.

5. The Last Forever by Deb Caletti 

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Expected Release: April 1st

I adore Deb Caletti and while I absolutely loved He’s Gone, which was her dive into adult fiction, I am glad to see she’s back in YA. All of her books are just so incredibly good. She hits SO many issues of teens, but she never makes her books seem like “issue books”. Her stories are flawless and genuine and each one has captivated me and made me fall in love. She’s gotten so much recognition for her books and its totally deserved. The book is sure to be another emotion wrecker. The main character’s mom has died, and her dad is having a hard time recovering and so is she. Enter a road trip, a new place, and a new boy, and it just spells awesome. Deb Caletti tells beautiful stories and I’m sure this one will be as well.

4. City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare 

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Expected Release: May 27th

I think most people would be surprised to see this as #4 and now #1 or 2 or 3. And its true, I love Cassandra Clare and adore her books. I definitely can’t wait to read City of Heavenly Fire and see how the TMI series wraps up. My only thing is…I thought the series was wrapped up perfectly in City of Glass and I didn’t feel like it needed to be continued. I am not a fan of Fallen Angels and I kind of like Lost Souls. So while I do want to read the end and find out who lives and who dies, and where everyone sort of ends up, I also am just not DYING to read it, like I was with the other novels. I still think City of Glass was a great ending. But I digress. I’m a TMI fan, and I will read it because I love Jace and Clary and Alec and Simon and Magnus and Isabelle and all of them.

3. Unforgotten by Jessica Brody 

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Expected Release: February 25th

Another discovery of this year, Jessica Brody has become one of my favorite authors. I read her book, Unremembered, first, and then dove into her contemporary books which seriously make me laugh. They’re fantastic. Definitely check them out. But we’re focusing on Unremembered. Unremembered is about Seraphina, who wakes up in the middle of the ocean, the only survivor of a deadly plane crash. She doesn’t remember who she is, nor does she remember much in general. No one comes forward to claim her, so she’s taken in by foster parents. While Sera remembers the world, she also realizes that she’s different than others, faster, stronger, smarter. Then a boy named Zen comes into the picture, claiming that he knows her, and that they’re in love. Its like Bourne Identity, but with a badass girl instead of Matt Damon. Its seriously awesome, and I can’t say much more because Unforgotten is the sequel, and you just need to read this. This comes out TWO days before my birthday so happy birthday to me!

2. Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

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Expected Release: May 6th 2014

Morgan Matson is one of my absolute favorite authors of all time. She made me fall in love with her, as an author, so fast with Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour. Then she released Second Chance Summer, and its just as good. I’ve met Morgan several times this year, but it’ll be two years since her last novel came out when this third novel hits the stands. That’s a LONG time to wait haha, or at least it is to me. The main character Emily meets Sloane, who introduces her to a world of fun, who helps pull her out of her shell. Then Sloane disappears and leaves behind a list of things for Emily to accomplish like “apple picking at night” or “dancing until dawn” or “kiss a stranger”. It sounds like another unique and fun Morgan Matson novel, and I honestly just can’t wait for it.

1. Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

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Expected Release: February 11th

Another discovery of this year (I seriously dove into books and blogging in 2013), Andrew Smith’s Winger literally knocked my socks off, blew me away, had my jaw hanging open down to the ground. It seriously just…it was so amazing. Now Andrew has a new book releasing in February (on mine and Jon’s 6 year anniversary!), and I’m DYING to read it. I keep trying to get my hands on an ARC but have been thus far unsuccessful. I may have to wait til February but it’ll be worth the wait. Andrew has a natural humor to his books, I have laughed out loud, uncontrollably with tears, because of his books. In this novel, Andrew is combining his hilarity with his out of this world story telling (giant insects? really? I’m shuddering already), and I’m sure he’s going to get that teen boy spirit, hilarity and coming of age-ness like he has done before. I am DYING to get my hands on this book, especially when everyone is loving it! It WILL happen!

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I hope you enjoyed this Tuesday Top ….Eleven…or something…some number close to Ten. You should definitely add ALL of these books to your “to-read” list, and if you haven’t read their prequels, then get on it! These books and authors are all great, and you’ll definitely enjoy them!

Don’t forget that you can check out previous Tuesday Top Ten lists here!

What are some books that you are looking forward to in the New Year? Share in the comments! 

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October Book Wrap Up!

Books Pledged to Read in 2013: 200 Books

Read so Far: 173

On Track?: Yes! I’m actually 7 books ahead!

Total Books For October: 20

As always, more about if you click the title or cover, you’ll get the review!

The Extra by Kathryn Lasky

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Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs

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The House of Hades by Rick Riordan

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Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

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Just One Year By Gayle Forman

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Goddess by Josephine Angelini

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City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare (Re-Read)

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Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

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Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan

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Panic by Lauren Oliver (Review Will Come Closer to Book Release in March)

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Teardrop by Lauren Kate

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Allegiant by Veronica Roth

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Reality Boy by A.S. King

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Olivia Twisted by Vivi Barnes (Review Next Week!)

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Legend by Marie Lu (Re-Read)

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Crewel by Gennifer Albin

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The Fall of the Hotel Dumort by Cassandra Clare and Maureen Johnson

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52 Reasons to Hate my Father by Jessica Brody

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Prodigy by Marie Lu (Re-Read)

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Ten by Gretchen McNeil

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What were some of your favorite books that you read in the month of November? Share them in the comments!

 

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YALL Fest Interview: Lauren Oliver

Screen Shot 2013-09-09 at 1.56.13 PMToday’s YALL Fest Interview is with Lauren Oliver!

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Lauren Oliver is the author of many books, about it most notably her Delirium Trilogy, decease which follows the story of Lena. Lena lives in our society, but its different: love has been classified as a disease and everyone must be cured. Lena’s mom once caught the disease and Lena cannot wait to be cured, matched and to live her life, until she meets Alex. She also has the standalone novel, Before I Fall. Mean girl, Samantha, dies, and then is forced to live through that last day of her life seven times before she can figure out why.

Lauren is also the author of the middle grade books, Liesl and Po and The Spindlers.

Her first adult novel, Rooms, will be released in fall of 2014, and she is also writing another young adult novel called Panic, which will release in March of 2014.

You can find her at her website here.

Enjoy the interview!

What one thing do you need to have when you write?

Lauren: Coffee!

What is the hardest line to write- the first or the last?

Lauren: Honestly, neither. It’s just every single line in between that feels impossible.

Best writing tip you ever received?

Lauren: Aim for truth and beauty will follow.

Tell us 5 random facts about yourself.

Lauren: I have fourteen tattoos. I can fall asleep any time, any place. I have a phobia of worms. I hate fruit. I wrote my first novel largely on my Blackberry.

 Where’s your favorite place to write?

Lauren: In my sunroom in upstate New York.

What are you working on now?

Lauren: Two different middle grade books and an untitled young adult novel that my agent described as “the most disturbing thing he’s ever read.” Oops!

What is your favorite genre to write in? To Read?

Lauren: I love realistic books that include just a hint of fantasy.

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Myself and Lauren Oliver back in March 2013, at the Mission Viejo Library 

Look out for more YALL Fest Interviews coming soon!

Meeting Lauren Oliver

Okay, stuff before I say anything about the actual event, advice I have to say two things:

One thing is that…meeting authors is always an awesome thing for me. Authors are such rock stars to me. I mean, patient don’t get me wrong: I love me some actual rock stars and I love my actors and actresses and stuff but authors…authors are the most underrated rock stars out there. Books are the most amazing gift that anyone can give and authors are the people that give us those gifts. When I read a good book, and I set it down and I feel like I’ve been transported to a different world, or become a different person, or if I feel like my life has been changed…that’s the mark of a good author. So meeting authors…its an honor for me.

Secondly, young adult literature truly is an amazing thing. The outpour of young adult literature these days is just astonishing and if there’s one good thing (and I think there are several) that has come out of this outpouring, it is that it has encouraged more and more teens to read. The amount of young girls that were in that room…I was amazed and seriously happy about it. There were girls around my age, but there were also girls in high school, middle school…maybe even younger. (I’m really bad with guessing ages…like, really really bad). I reveled in that awesomeness for a bit.

But moving on…

Today I met Lauren Oliver!

It was an awesome, awesome thing to do. I have to send a lot of props to the Mission Viejo library and their teen services librarian, Allison. I’ve gone to two events put on by her before…I met Meg Cabot there about three or four years ago, and I met Cassandra Clare a couple years ago. Now she’s put on this awesome Lauren Oliver event, and another Cassandra Clare event in a couple weeks (and you know I’ll be there!) Also, much thanks needs to go out to A Whale of a Tale Bookstore in Irvine for sponsoring these events as well. If you’re around Southern California at all, definitely check this place out. Its exactly what a bookstore should be, and its run by a fantastic lady, and they help to put on these awesome events.

First off…the room that the event was in? Super awesome.

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And I know its super random to even remark upon the room but the room was really neat! Most events I go to are in big ‘ol rooms to accomodate a ton of people (which is probably what is going to occur when I attend the Cassandra Clare in about a week) but this one was in this cute little storytime room that is probably used for children’s events at the library and it was adorable. I kept finding new things to look at. I love libraries that have these kind of rooms because it just plays into the imaginations of kids and its just wonderful. So yeah, A+ on the room choice, guys. Plus it made the event super intimate. Lauren Oliver is already well known, and a best seller, but once her book becomes a hit TV show (more on that later), she’s going to blow up even more so it was nice to meet her in this capacity.

And she was soooo incredibly nice and awesome!

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She was really sweet and really personable. She mostly talked about the sort of journey she had gone through as a writer. She’s the daughter of two literature professors so she grew up with a love of books and proclaims herself a book addict (now where have I heard that term before…). She said she really began writing when she wrote fan fiction for the novels she liked, though ‘fan fiction’ wasn’t really a term yet. As she grew older, she began to write more and more, especially cheesy stories for her best friend, Jackie, which usually involved outlandish stories that involved them and cute boys that they were crushing on.

Then she talked about novels and how difficult it was in the beginning, because she felt like she just wasn’t really understanding how to write a novel. And that really hit home for a writer like me, because sometimes I feel like I’m the most awesome writer in the world, and sometimes I’m like, “I have no idea what I’m doing…”

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Yeah, like that. No, really, its nice to hear authors that you admire and worship talking about the difficulty of writing, because it IS difficult. Its difficult to figure out plot structure and character and setting and even just proper grammar. And it was nice to know that she didn’t just write Before I Fall, and that was that. It was her fourth or fifth novel that she’d actually ever even written and that gives me hope that I can write a novel that touches people and reaches out to people the way her books have to me.

I think that the best part of her presentation was that she talked about writing and her journey through writing and getting published and how it was difficult but well worth the effort. She talked about agents, and creative writing classes and all of that. She talked about books that influenced her (Roald Dahl, A Wrinkle in Time, J.K. Rowling, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, to name a few). She was funny, and witty and relatable. She was accessible to her fans.

It was also really awesome hearing about how she came up with the idea for Delirium, such a combination of things. First off, she said that Gabriel Garcia Marquez said all books are about love or death. Before I Fall is all about death so she thought she should write a book about love, not a romance novel, but love, itself. Combined with the fact that there was the swine flu outbreak at the time, she thought of love as a disease and a possible cure. She also briefly talked about how her fiancé/boyfriend of four years died in 2009, and how she would’ve said yes to something like the cure. Thus the Delirium idea was born. Its always really interesting how a story can come about; both from things going on around you and also things that are happening directly to you.

And of course, Lauren talked about the Delirium TV show on FOX! She sounds really excited about it; and that makes me really excited about it. Right now, casting is going on and hopefully they’ll film a pilot soon. As I’ve said before, Emma Roberts is playing Lena, Daren Kagasoff as Alex, Gregg Sulkin as Julian and Jeanine Mason as Hana. She’s read the script and has definitely approved of it and now I’m just hoping that they film it, that people love it and it gets optioned for an entire season. I think Delirium is a great book for television.

And meeting her was just fantastic. The line was kind of long and it was a warm day, but you barely even noticed. Everyone in line was talking books, either Lauren Oliver’s or Cassandra Clare‘s, as most of the people at this event are going to the Cassie event in a couple weeks. And when you did get to the front, it was totally worth the wait, and the bit of sweat. Ew.

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She was SO nice. The best part about this Lauren Oliver event is the time that she takes out of her day, and her life to meet with her fans. I’ve been to plenty of autograph signings and meet and greets where the celebrity signs your little thing, slides it across the table to you, and that’s that. Meg Cabot was not like that. Cassandra Clare and Holly Black were not like that…and Lauren Oliver is not like that. She takes the time to sit and talk to each and every person that comes through her line, and it really shows her appreciation for her fans. We show our appreciation by coming to this events, buying her books and all of that and she shows hers back by taking the time to talk to us. Its such a little thing but such a great one.

First thing she asked was if I was from around the area, and I said yes because I basically am. Everything in Southern California is basically just one big blob. But anyway, she remarked on how awesome our weather is, and how she has to go to yucky Texas tomorrow (though I’m sure she’s gonna love you all, Texans!!! And you guys have great food, or so I’ve heard!). Then she noticed my books.

Well, book. My copies of Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem are brand new. Requiem just released a few days ago, and I just bought Delirium and Pandemonium because I previously bought them on my Kindle and I couldn’t exactly have her sign my kindle….though I did think about it for a moment. No, the book I’m talking about is Before I Fall. It looks like one of MY books. What I mean by that is, it wouldn’t look out of place at a used bookstore but no one would buy it if it was sitting on the shelf of a Barnes and Noble. I show my books a lot of love; there’s always food stains, and creased pages, folded covers…sometimes just truly beat up covers. I show the books I love some seriously tough love and she noticed. Of course she did. Other readers will know what I’m talking about…and they notice it too.

Except you weird people who keep their books in perfect pristine condition and don’t fold the pages and all that. Weird people. (That was for my sister, who finds my book beatings astonishing haha).

But so we started talking about Before I Fall, which I think she liked. I think most people know of her Delirium trilogy and that she is proud of her Before I Fall novel. And its definitely my favorite. I remember reading it and absolutely hating Samantha Kingston. However, as you read the novel, your opinion changes. Samantha is forced to relive the last day of her life seven times and you’re just glued to the pages. Its a wonderful novel…and I knew that it had been optioned for a film but I hadn’t heard anything else.

Well, nerd girls (and guys, if you’re reading this), you heard it right here, from me, from Lauren: Before I Fall is still in the process of becoming a movie! It has a screenplay and it has a director. Right now, there are two actresses in mind for the role of Samantha, but according to Lauren, there’s a particular actress that they “need” to play her. Very intriguing. Of course, she couldn’t tell me, don’t be silly, dear readers, but I was really excited to hear that this movie was still a possibility because I truly believe that Before I Fall is Lauren’s greatest hit.

She also talked briefly of her middle grade books, Liesl and Po, and The Spindlers. Liesl and Po is about a girl and a ghost and a box of magic, in the words of Lauren, and The Spindlers is about a girl who has to go to this subterranean world to recover her brother’s soul, stolen by these spider creatures called the splinders. Apparently she meets some crazy creatures, and it has a very Alice in Wonderland feel to it. I’ve never had the pleasure to read these books yet; in fact, I didn’t even know they existed. Now that I do, however, I’ll be checking them out soon. I may be way too old for them according to the age group on the back cover but reading knows no age.

Great news as well! Even though the Delirium trilogy is over (much sad face), we have a lot to look forward to in the future. She has another young adult novel coming out soon, called Panic, a realistic instead of dystopian, and also an adult novel planned as well, and unfortunately, I can’t remember the title. Forgive me :( But lots of things to look forward to!

So meeting Lauren Oliver was a super fun time, and an enjoyable one at that. I’m definitely going to be tracking her down again at next month’s Los Angeles Festival of Books to say hi to her again. If you haven’t had the chance to read her books, definitely do so, and try to catch her while she’s on tour. You can check out the dates here.

And before you leave, check out this video of Lauren reading a spoiler-free excerpt from her newest novel, Requiem.

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Check out my signed books!!!!!