Sunday, September 11, 2011

Random Acts of Publicity Strikes Again

*I was supposed to post this Saturday evening, but unfortunately I was distracted by the TV. *cough* DOCTOR WHO *cough* I apologize for my lateness.*

Welcome to my third and final installment of Random Acts of Publicity week. (Again, click here for R.A.P FAQs and click for Tuesday's or Thursday's installments.) For this post, I'm going to focus on a few authors I've recently had the pleasure of meeting in person, as well as my top 3 reads of 2011.

Lisa Yee -- I met Lisa at a writing conference back in the summer of 2009. She spent her day teaching us wonderful things, sharing her joys and struggles as a writer, and delighted us with her humorous and energetic nature. (She also introduced us to her faithful traveling companion and photo stand-in, Peepy--who is a cute stuffed toy version of a marshmallow-bunny-peep.) Lisa writes Middle Grade and YA literature as well as writing stories for American Girl. (And yes, I was very much into American Girl when I was much younger, so that news thrilled me.) Click out her newest book Warp Speed, which debuted earlier this year, or any of her other booksMillicent Min, Girl Genius; Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time; So Totally Emily Ebers; Good Luck, Ivy; Absolutely Maybe; Bobby vs. Girls (Accidentally); Bobby the Brave (Sometimes); Aloha, Kanani; Good Job, Kanani

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Neil Gaiman -- I have talked about Mr. Gaiman here on my blog before and my love for his stories. Last year, I heard him speak at a "vaudeville-variety-performance-type" show and got to briefly meet him at a meet-and-greet/swag-signing event after the show. During the show, he read aloud two of his short stories: one about studying the effects of alcohol on one's writing and the other was a hard-boiled detective revamping of nursery rhymes. And he didn't just read them, he performed them using different voices, tones, facial expressions, and movements. It was hilarious and I was instantly hooked! (Of course, at the time I had never read any of his books. I knew who he was and the things he wrote, but I picked up one of his books despite all the good things I had heard.) While many of his works have a certain darkness to them, they can also be enchantingly sweet to poignantly engaging to quaintly humorous to mysteriously gritty. Gaiman's writings range from graphic novels to children's literature to short stories to screen plays/TV episodes to full-length novels for adults. He is most known for the graphic comic series The Sandman, but you can check out any of his other books: American Gods, Anansi Boys, Stardust, Coraline, The Graveyard Book, Smoke and Mirrors (short stories collection), Fragile Things (short stories collection), M is for Magic (children's short stories collection), Neverwhere, The Wolves in the Walls, The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish, Odd and the Frost Giants...(and many more!)

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These two are both great authors and great people! I highly recommended both of them. =) And now for my top 3 reads of 2011 (note: these are books I read this year, not ones released this year). And the "winners" are ...*drum-roll* no particularly order:

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente: The story of a young September who is swept away from her boring life and offered a chance for adventure in Fairyland by the Green Wind. But Fairyland is more dangerous than it seems, especially with the evil Marquess running Court now. September must rely not only on her new friends, but her own inner strength, courage, and wisdom if she is to survive her magical quest. Click here for long summary. (Review coming soon.)

The Hunchback Assignments by Arthur Slade: In this steampunk adventure, teenage Modo, a hunchback with an amazing ability and secret agent for the British Empire, must face his greatest challenge. He finds himself thrown onto a case involving missing orphans, homicidal nobleman with no memories, and a mysterious organization plotting against the Empire. Along the way, our hero meets up with the attractive yet sneaky Olivia and the two soon realize that time is running out not only for their Empire, but for the world. Click here for long summary.or Click here for my review of the book.

M is for Magic by Neil Gaiman: In this short stories collection, one can read tales that range from magical to haunting to humorous to simply eerie. Click here for a list of the short stories. or Click here my review of it.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this week of random publicity, and I hope you found some new authors or books that caught your eye. Now do you have any author or book recommendations for me? I'm always on the look out for a good book! =)

(Elvish Farewell)

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