Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Vampirates, books, and more

Sunrise today at 6:55, sunset will be at 7:09.

It's our 25th anniversary! Love you, Dennis!

Busy day yesterday. It started at 5 am with a shower and a hair washing and then a fast paced day filled with author visits at schools, ending with a store visit with the same author, Justin Somper, and his Vampirates series.

Lots of ordering and driving, lots of movement and emailing, a 14 hour day ending with a glass of wine, The Red Green Show, and a dip into a new grown up book called The Year of the Hare, by Arto Paasilinna.

September and October are always the busiest months at the bookstores I've worked at, at least for those of us who are involved with the authors and their visits and the books they are on tour for (the books for which they are on tour? ah...screw it). There are the trade shows, the library conventions, the daily unboxing of the big books of the season, the day is ever changing and exciting.

Yesterday we were searching for 350 copies of the new Jan Brett book. How do you misplace 9 boxes of books? Although, it is a big receiving room, filled with other big, brown boxes; it can get a bit overwhelming when you are looking for one specific title, even if that title is in 9 boxes which are probably all stacked quietly together.

Now it's time to do the final planning for the Eoin Colfer Artemis Fowl Rocks! event tomorrow night and the Curiosity Day event in the Commons (Curious George's 70th birthday party and celebration of how curiosity is important to reading and learning). There are posters to be made, twitter tweets to post, a newsletter to be written, reviews to get out....

We were in Portland over the weekend to visit with our friends, people we grew up with when we were all in our 20's and part of the Eugene music scene. Some of us played, some of us sang, some worked in the bars where the bands played and some of us drank and hung out in those bars where all the music happened. One of these friends had a stroke - he seems to be recovering well - and it's been way too long since the last time we were all together in the same room. So, everyone loaded up their guitars and amps, and we gathered to sing and play and eat and drink. Truly, an extraordinary day.

Over this last weekend filled with music I read The Half-Life of Planets, by Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin, a great book about a girl who is feeling unhinged from her life and uses the kissing of boys to feel grounded, and the boy she meets in the women's room in the hospital, a boy with an encyclopedic knowledge of certain kinds of music, who has Asperger's Syndrome.

The story is told in alternating chapters and it is such a good story with lots of music, lots of crushing, lots of yearning for something. I just loved it and I think I may need to read it again.

Liana has a note that reads SLUT, one that was slid through her locker door, and so she is going to refrain from kissing boys. It should be easy. And then she meets Hank in the bathroom.

Hank has Asperger's and is more than a little bit awkward. He loves Liana, as far as he can tell, although he may not be able to have the relationship he wants since he doesn't have the social skills needed to suavely work through what it takes to maintain a relationship.

There are embarrassing moments where Hank blurts out inappropriate things, thinking that all friends are real friends, and moments of terrible tenderness; Liana and Hank have a lot in common and are both passionate about one thing in particular. Liana loves astronomy, Hank loves music, and they both may love each other. Such a good book. Ages 12 and up. (Disney-Hyperion Books. $16.99. Available now.)

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