Saturday, April 29, 2017

BookExpo America and BookCon are a must go for Book Lovers

Book Expo 2017, the premier book publishing event of the year is returning to the Jacob Javits Center in New York City this year. It is held May 31 through June 2, and then on June 3 and June 4, ReedPop, is also holding BookCon, a convention for the public.  Last year, Book Expo was held in Chicago, Illinois, but BookCon was also held during ComicCon  in New York City in October 2016 as an alternative publishing event.   ReedPop was trying to expand programming  during Comic Con.  It must have been successful because ReedPop is again holding BookCon at Comic Con on October 6-9 in New York City this year.

Why go to Book Expo or BookCon.

Its the swag.  If you are a blogger, librarian or book reviewer this is the event to attend. Hundreds of authors are at Book Expo. Authors sign and give away thousands of free books. I have interviewed librarians, who use the free books for summer reading programs or to see what books to get in the future.  Some of the free books are just advanced reading copies but many are the actual book.  In 2015, when we last attended Book Expo in New York City. the third day of the show was devoted to young adult and children books.  Besides getting free books, you can meet authors and talk to them, briefly, about their books and future plans.  There are over 400 exhibitors.

There are also panel discussions by authors and publishers and breakfast events, which sell out early.
The Adult Book and Author Breakfast will start the second day of the event. Whitney Cummings, the comedienne and writer will host and Stephen King, Owen King, Scott Kelly, Kenya Barris, Jesmyn Ward and Claire Messud will be impaneled at this event.

The Children's Book and Author Breakfast on Friday June 2 will kick off the third day of the event. Savannah Guthrie, the co-host of the Today Show on NBC and an author, will host, and Isla Fisher, the actress and first time author, will join Jason Reynolds, Marieko Nijkamp and Jennifer Weiner at a panel during the breakfast. 

 The giant publishing houses are present. Simon & Schuster,  Penguin Random House, Hatchette, Harper Collins, MacMillan have large areas, where their authors sign books and they have meetings. Smaller publishers like Sourcebooks, Chronicle, Doubleday, Scholastic, and Disney are typically present and will give away free books at their booths. Plus there is a huge area solely devoted to autographing free books.  Thirty or so lines, starting once the show opens, for an hour per author all day long, where people can line up to get free signed advanced publishing copies and free books signed by the authors.  

How do you get your free swag. Make sure to bring a suitcase and check it in the coat room, then as you get free swag, load it into your suitcase.  

The exhibitors run the gamut from the major publishing houses to people who will try to get your business.

There is also a section devoted solely to bloggers.

This is not a cheap ticket, but its worth a visit.

 ReedPop, the event organizer, has also instituted BookCon, which is open to the public on Saturday and Sunda.   Adult Tickets  (anyone over 12 years old) prior to May 5 are $35 for Saturday June 3 and $30 for Sunday June 4.  Kids 6-12 are just $10.  Tickets are $45 onsite on Saturday and $40 on Sunday.

BookCon has more limited free swag.  There are still free books but less of them, but there are also pay for books that are signed by authors.  In addition, there are huge halls filled with hundreds of people to see the feature speakers.  There is a lot to see:

On Dan Brown, acclaimed author of The Da Vinci Code will be on the main stage at 11:50 on Saturday.

Jeff Kinney, author of the Wimpy Kids novels, will be on the main stage at 12:45 on Saturday.
Rainbow Rowell, young adult author, will host an hour long panel at 12:15 on Saturday. My daughter has read all of her books.

Holly Black and Leigh Bardugo, YA fantasy authors, will also host an hour long panel on Saturday and delve into the world of fantasy at 12:30.

Young Adult authors Sarah Dessen, Shannon Hale, Morgan Matson and Jenny Han will host a panel  at 1:45 to 2:45.

Tor Science Fiction and Fantasy will hold a panel discussion with John Scalzi, Charlie Jane Anders, Cory Doctorow, Annalee Newitz will discuss science fiction and fantasy.

There is something for everyone.

This year Kevin Hart will be a featured speaker on Sunday. There will be 3 separate meet and greets, at 10:30, 11:30 and 12:45 and one live Q & A where he will be interviewed at 4:00 pm., Each event is $30, but you will  get a free copy of his new book.  At the Meet and Greet, you can get a photo with Kevin Hart.  See for more information.
BookExpo and BookCon , five days of books, authors, free swag, speakers, authors, movie and tv stars.

It's a must go. Hope to see you there.