Monday, September 24, 2012

2012 National Book Festival!

I think DC must be taking this 'first days of Fall' thing really seriously because this past weekend was fantastic! Both days were sunny and comfortable temperature-wise, which made my days at the National Book Festival a lot of fun. For the past few years I've been in NC for this event (Duke Homecoming) but I've gotta say that if this is the caliber of event the Library of Congress has been pulling off every year then I've got to continue sticking around.

You may have seen the pic I posted on my Facebook page, but Saturday was really all about R.L. Stine. His Goosebumps and Fear Street series filled my childhood and teen years with horror and I'm sure helped turn me into the reader I am today. I had too many things going on to get a book signed, but since I heard that the line was so ridonkulous that people had to be turned away....I think I'll just be grateful I got a seat for his talk. 

 R.L. Stine

There are more creepy stalker pics of course but the most important bit is the one video I took the entire weekend - Stine reading 'Haunted' by Shel Silverstein! So cool and I always find it interesting to hear what an author actually sounds like in real life.

Click below to read about Sunday! 

Now Sunday, that was Charlaine Harris all the way. Let me preface by saying that I only showed up to wait 2hr because 1) it was a beautiful day, and 2) I live close enough to the National Mall to walk. If either of these things would have been different who knows how things would have ended up, but thank goodness I had nice people waiting in line behind me and a good book to keep me distracted (Hostage to Pleasure in case you were wondering).  The one sad thing about this was that I didn't actually get to hear Charlaine talk/do a reading but hey, I made a choice and stuck with it. And when it was over and I saw the rest of the line that had developed while I was waiting .....yeah. I don't regret anything. 


2nd half of the line of death

The rest of the afternoon (after a quick stop at Fiesta DC for lunch) was taken up by a couple surprises. I haven't read anything by Eloisa James but she was simply a delight to listen to. She's funny, witty, and has a fantastic viewpoint on the literature vs. genre fiction debate, especially considering that she teaches Shakespeare at Fordham. As the first romance author ever invited to the National Book Festival I thought she did an amazing job.

Eloisa James

The one slight disappointment? Surprisingly it was Christopher Paolini. I don't know guys, I couldn't get over what felt like a kind of condescending tone towards the audience (it might have been because so many of them were young children, but still) and the reality that he should never be allowed to read his own books out loud. Seriously. It was no bueno.

Christopher Paolini

Other than that small bummer it was a fantastic weekend with so many book lovers - EVERYWHERE! And so many children getting just as much enjoyment out of the whole thing. I've got hope for the future guys, for real.

The view walking in Saturday afternoon