While you most likely know Fangirl Fury as a fangirl, I am also a beach girl. I’ve been very fortunate enough to grow up near the shore and basically have the beach as my backyard- I’m still trying to wrap my mind around how people spend their summer not near the ocean (or that many of my hometown friends don’t like the beach..).
As you can probably guess, the beach is one of my favorite places to read during the summer. On a beach day, I often alternate between reading and going into the water- no worries, I never do both at the same time. Today I’m going to be walking you through my somewhat summer, somewhat beach TBR. Basically, these are books that I’d like to read during beach trips, days by the pool, and in between this season. I’m also going to talk about the books that I have such fond memories of reading in these same spots last summer.
My 2017 Beach TBR Included:
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia- After reading and loving Eliza and Her Monsters, I immediately needed more Francesca Zappia, which led me to Made You Up. Read while tanning on the beach, Made You Up sheds light on mental health, and not knowing what to expect kept me glued to the sand!
The Start of Me & You by Emery Lord- If I had to name my summer after an Emery Lord book, it’d be The Start of Me & My Pool Raft. I read many books floating around the pool (no books are harmed in doing so), including The Start of Me & You. Emery Lord is one of my go-to contemporary authors, and any of her books make for the perfect summer read.
My Top Five Wednesday Rewind post for today is intended to be about books that double as great event themes. I mean, who wouldn’t love a Warcross themed party—Mario Party and rainbow hair extensions for all!
The T5W group encourages us not to manipulate topics for the sake of potential future topics. However, as I was scrolling through archived topics for this month, Books as Events caught my attention and had me thinking in a different direction. If you guys have been following Fangirl Fury for a while, you’ll know that summer is my favorite season and I’m always on the hunt for summery contemporaries. Today, I’m going to be giving you book recommendations based on 5 summertime events.
Weddings- I’ve experienced plenty of weddings through YA, but I’m actually attending my first one this summer.
Save the Date by Morgan Matson-Yes, Save the Date has not come out yet (1 more week to go!), but I have no doubt that I’ll love Morgan Matson’s latest book about a girl and her family’s disastrous wedding weekend.
Once & For All by Sarah Dessen-Any Sarah Dessen book is the perfect read for summertime, but what better way to get ready for wedding season than reading a book about the daughter of a wedding planner??
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han- To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is one of my all-time favorites for a ton of reasons, but I just love the sweet and romancey vibes of this one. Not to mention that a wedding may or may not pop up in one of the latter installments.
Summary:Clara Shin’s summer plans include spending days by the community pool and getting into her usual antics with her prankster friends. But when one of Clara’s jokes goes too far, her dad forces her to work on his food truck, the KoBra, for the summer. Which means no jetting off to Tulum for two weeks in August to meet with her social media-influencer mom. Making matters worse, Clara will be joined by Rose Carver, her arch nemesis and fellow KoBra employee. But as summer goes on, what if working with Rose isn’t as bad as Clara imagined? And maybe the coffee boy named Hamlet is pretty cute. Maybe Clara actually enjoys helping her dad with his business. Maybe Clara’s summer will be pretty great after all.
Cover Lust?:Yes! I love how the ombre effect is present on both the cover and intro pages of the book. It also matches one of Clara’s descriptions of the LA night sky.
Summer calls for days spent by the pool and on the beach, catching on TV and movies, and of course, reading ALL the books. Especially some of the amazing new releases lined up for Summer 2018. The books below all come out from June through August, and I actually plan on reading all of them before summer’s end! And don’t mind me while I plan out my anticipated fall releases post– make sure you get some finger workouts in this season for all of that scrolling..
Save the Date by Morgan Matson (June 5)-Save the Date is hands-down my most anticipated release for this summer. I’ve grown to absolutely adore Morgan Matson’s books, and the fact that this book is about a wedding has me ready to read. This blogger LOVES Say Yes to the Dress and Four Weddings on TLC, and I’m loving this wedding books in June trend continue in 2018 (2017 gave us Sarah Dessen’s Once and For All). I’ve read Morgan Matson’s other books through the library, but I decided to preorder Save the Date because I know I’m going to love it and it has an awesome preorder campaign.
Summary:Anise can’t wait to spend the summer before senior year in Santa Cruz with her surfboard and best friends constantly in tow. But when her aunt gets into a near-fatal car accident, Anise must relocate with her dad to Nebraska for the season to help care for her three younger cousins. With the ocean as her home and heart, Anise feels lost as ever in landlocked Nebraska. Especially since she’s staying in the childhood home of her runaway mom, who’s been in out and Anise’s life forever, and her friends seem to be having a great summer without her. Enter the charismatic, one-armed skateboarder, Lincoln, who challenges Anise to trade her surfboard for a skateboard. And Anise isn’t one to step away from a challenge, even it means stepping further away from home.
I almost always end my book reviews saying that I’m looking forward to more books from that specific author. Well, today is the perfect opportunity for me to keep wishing and hoping!
Today’s Top Five Wednesday Rewind post from April 2017 is all about authors who I’m craving to add to my TBR. These authors have not necessarily announced that they are coming out with new books soon, but this reader can only hope they do!
Francesca Zappia- I think it’s say to safe that I need another Francesca Zappia book in my life *turns back to 80+ book TBR*. Eliza and Her Monsters was one of my favorite books of 2017- ANYONE WHO GIVES ME FANGIRL FEELS BECOMES A FAVORITE WRITER OF MINE- and I really enjoyed Made You Up last summer.
Sarah Dessen- Yes, Sarah Dessen has plenty of books out, but the contemporary reader that I am has obviously read all of the Queen of YA Contemporary’s books already. Since Sarah doesn’t have a new book coming out this year, I wouldn’t be surprised if she has something up her sleeve for 2019.
Ruta Sepetys- Okay, so I know Ruta Sepetys does have a book in-progress (I believe it has something to do with 1930s Spain) and has been working on the adaptation of Between Shades of Gray, Ashes in the Snow. She also does a ton of appearances, and she’s such an amazing speaker along with being an amazing writer. I would love a new book from my favorite historical fiction author soon.
Emery Lord- Again, I’m cheating but I went on a bit of an Emery Lord kick last summer and I am craving a new book from one of my favorite contemporary authors. Sidenote that if you’re craving a summery contemporary, The Names They Gave Us is the perfect way to go (just grab some tissues with your beach towel). The Map From Here to There, the sequel to The Start of Me and You, is slated to come out next year, and I am so excited to reunite with one of my fictional boyfriends, Max Watson. However, I do still have one more book of her’s to read, Open Road Summer.
Becky Albertalli- Yes, I know that Becky does have another book coming out this year, What If It’s Us with Adam Silvera. However, after reading Leah On the Offbeat, I would love another book in the Simonverse from her! You guys know that I love college YA, and now that most of our Simon characters are in college, I think it’d be fun to follow one of their adventures there. Or maybe a school break where the gang is all back together?? It’d also be really cool if she maybe wrote from the perspective of a character from The Upside of Unrequited (I need more Reid in my life).
Who are some authors that you would love to get a new book from? Share in the comments!
If you’ve been around Fangirl Fury for a while, you know that I can work Book Con into any bookish conversation. The land of all the books, Book Con is an annual book convention held in New York City at the Javits Center- sorry for my Midwest readers, but this fangirl never wants the convention to move back to Chicago. I attended Book Con in 2015 and 2017, so 2018 will be my third time attending the convention, but only my second time going for both Saturday and Sunday.
Since I consider Book Con to be one of the best weekends of the year, I want to help you make Book Con your favorite weekend too! Even if you’re not attending Book Con, these tips can also be applied to other conventions and bookish events!
Plan ahead and stay organized- The Book Con schedule is typically available on its website and app a month before and is updated leading up to and during the convention. In general, the schedule includes autographing sessions (both in the autographing area and in-booth), panels, meet-and-greets, and new for 2018, writing workshops.
I highly recommend planning out what events you’d like to attend BEFORE going to Book Con. It may not include every thing you’ll want to do over the weekend (the Publishers Weekly guide available the morning of each day usually includes book-drops and events that aren’t in the online schedule), but I HIGHLY recommend having back-ups in case a line gets capped for an event.
You can use My Show through thebookcon.com and the Book Con app to keep track of both the convention schedule and your personal schedule on your devices. I also recommend creating a printed version of your schedule. I know a lot of people use Excel to create their schedule, and last year, I used Word for mine. I kept track of the events I knew I was definitely attending (the autographing sessions in the autographing area) and in-booth events that I wanted to attend. I brought three copies to the convention, two for me and one for my mom, my Book Con buddy. I also recommend bringing a pen so you can check off or add events.
Wear comfy shoes and clothes– By all means feel free to dress up to meet your favorite authors or even cosplay- there were so many awesome Six of Crows cosplays last year! But whatever you choose to wear, make sure it’s something that you’ll feel comfortable wearing and walking around in ALL DAY. For me, sneakers are definitely a must—Book Con requires A LOT of walking and A LOT of standing (although you’ll be able to sit in some lines). Last year, I wore sneakers, capris, and a t-shirt each day-there’s no better time to show off your Harry Potter and Hamilton gear. I also make sure to have extra hair-ties in my bag.
Bring a tote bag or backpack- Speaking of bags, make sure you bring at least one tote bag (think beach bag size) or backpack with you. Publishers do an awesome job of handing out tote bags, but you’ll want to make sure that you have something to put all your books and bookish swag in! And in my experience, I’ve needed at least 2 bags by the end of each day to hold all my stuff! Book Con does provide a Coat Check/bag area, but I’ve personally never used this service. I bring a backpack to the convention, with a tote bag stored inside. Going back to dress attire, it’s also important to remember that you will be carrying stuff all day when planning your outfit.
If possible, have a Book Con buddy– I know this isn’t possible for everyone, but going to Book Con with a friend or meeting with someone at the convention can make the convention a bit more stress-free. I’ve attended Book Con every year with my mom, who’s also my ultimate reading buddy. We make a mother-daughter weekend out of it, and it’s fun getting to travel and wait in line before/during the show together. While my mom does attend events for herself and my bookish sister, she’ll also go to book-drops for me if I’m at another event.
Bring snacks and drinks– When you’re carrying books around all day, you’re going to need some food! In my trusty backpack, I pack snacks and drinks, like water bottles, granola bars, and fruit. I typically snack in line before the show floor opens and in line for signings.
Don’t be afraid to make some time in your schedule for lunch. While you can totally pack your lunch too, my mom and I grab food from the Javits Center if we decide to break for lunch that day. We took a half hour for lunch on Saturday last year, since we stayed at the convention until 5, but we skipped on lunch on Sunday, since we planned and did leave before 3. And yes, lunch at the Javits can be a bit pricey (I think it was $30 for my mom and I to eat), but you can never go wrong with chicken fingers.
Bring cash– While the Book Con/ReedPOP, the Strand (they provide books available for purchase at most autographing sessions), and the cafeteria definitely take credit, some booths may only take cash. You don’t necessarily need to spend money at the convention, but in the past, I’ve spent money on autographing sessions that require a book purchase, lunch, Book Con merch, and at other booths.
Make sure to give yourself some time to explore the show floor, including its many vendors! The Strand typically has a big booth set up with their own merch, and this year I’m on the hunt for some new book sleeves and bookish candles.
Take the dust jackets off your books– If you’re bringing books from home to be signed and they’re hardcovers, leave the dust jackets at home! Obviously book sleeves can avoid damage to jackets, but give yourself a bit more peace of mind by avoiding wear-n-tear in your bags.
It’s not necessary to arrive at the crack of dawn– While the show floor does not open until 10AM each day, I believe the Javits Center opens for lining up between 6 AM or 7 AM. By all means you are welcome to arrive at Book Con as early as you want and yes the earlier you get there, the sooner you’ll get on the show floor at that 10AM start. If there’s an event at 10 AM that your bookish self MUST attend or really want to attend, it’d be a bit more advantageous of you to get in line sooner rather than later. But you don’t need to be one of the first in line at Book Con to have a good time. I typically get to the convention around 8:30 AM and I’m usually on the show floor by 10:10.
And for those of you who want to attend events at 10 AM before they’re capped, it is possible to attend them without being first in line. For example, in 2015, Rainbow Rowell had a Q&A and signing event scheduled later in the day, but in order to attend the event, you had to buy a copy of Fangirl from Macmillan starting at 10 AM. While I was not the first in line for getting on the show floor and even at Macmillan (I probably didn’t get on the show floor and figure out where I was until at least 10:15), I was still able to get a ticket.
Have fun– I know it sounds cheesey, but have fun being your best bookish self at the convention dedicated to books! I admit that it’s easy to get stressed out over fear of not getting to attend certain panels or signings but just remember to breathe and stay optimistic! And it’s okay if everything doesn’t go to plan; I promise you’ll come home with some great books and a great experience no matter what. Remember to keep a smile on your face and be nice to others. I myself have stressed about getting certain books or ARCs. While it may be disappointing to walk away from the convention without your most coveted ARC, remember that you’ll be able to have a nice, shiny, finished copy soon!
I’m very excited to announce that I will be also attending Book Expo for the first time ever this year! It’s honestly been one of my bookish dreams to attend Book Expo, and I cannot wait for these four bookish days!!
If you want more of an idea how much you can do in a day at Book Con, check out these posts about my Saturday and Sunday at the convention.
Are you attending Book Con this year? What are some of your convention tips? Share in the comments!