Tuesday, June 28, 2005

New installments in Pendragon and Edge Chronicles Series

Just a quick note to let you know that new books were just released in two popular series today. The Last of the Sky Pirates is the fifth book in the Edge Chronicles, by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell. In the land of The Edge, there are many assorted creatures, places, and people. From the DeepWoods to the floating city of Sanctophrax, the Edge is filled with interesting mysteries, not all of them pleasant. There are many creatures in this land, but the most feared creature in the wood is the Gloamglozer, a terrifying creature who can change shape.

The Pendragon Series, by D. J. MacHale, tells the story of Bobby Pendragon, a fourteen year old boy who travels the territories of Halla trying to save them from the evil Saint Dane. In book 6, The Rivers of Zadaa, he travels to Loor's home territory of Zadaa. He soon learns that all the water in Zadaa is gone, and he must stop this terrifying plot.

We'll be reviewing these books soon on Wands and Worlds. But for now, the books are available on Amazon.com or at your favorite bookseller:

The Last of the Sky Pirates

The Rivers of Zadaa

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Second Time Around

A good book is one that is just as enjoyable to second time around. A great book is one that gets better on the second reading. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is one such book. Right now, I'm reading it for a second time, and, I wouldn't have thought it possible, but it's even better the second time around. Of course, part of my enjoyment this time is that I'm reading it to David, and sharing a good book makes it even more fun. But part of it is discovering all the wonderful details that I missed the first time around. There's so much in this book that you don't "get" the first time around, that it really bears a second reading.

If you haven't read Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, I highly recommend it. If you have read it, read it again!

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

Saturday, June 11, 2005

BEA Special Report

Excitement was in the air. Writers, publishers, booksellers, librarians, and reporters all in one place - brought together by a shared love of books. We spent the weekend at Book Expo America-or BEA as it's known by insiders-the largest trade show in the book industry. It seemed like everyone important in the book world was there, and you never knew who you would run into. At one point, I was standing at the DC Comics booth and looked over to see a co-Executive Producer for the Everybody Loves Raymond television show, standing next to me.

We started out Friday morning by attending the Children's Book and Author Breakfast. Jim Dale, the marvelous voice of the Harry Potter audiobooks, was the master of ceremonies, and the speakers were Daniel Handler, the legal, literary and social representative of Lemony Snicket, and Pam Muñoz Ryan, author of Esperanza Rising and many other books. Jim Dale teased the audience by saying that yes, he does know who dies in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, but he's sworn to secrecy and can't say anything. Daniel Handler was great, as I had expected, but I was surprised at how funny Pam Muñoz Ryan was. Then Jim Dale treated us to a live performance of an excerpt from Prisoner of Azkeban.

After the breakfast, we started walking the floor. We picked up advance copies of upcoming books, inquired about our favorite series, and went to autographing sessions. The third member of our family, Nick Ruth, had an autographing session of his own, signing advance copies of The Breezes of Inspire, his upcoming sequel to The Dark Dreamweaver. We met a lot of nice people and had lots of fun. Overall it was a great experience! Here's some highlights of our BEA experience:

  • HarperCollins announced that Book the Twelfth of the Unfortunate Events series will be released on October 18th. Unfortunately, they're keeping the title secret for now. Probably for Lemony Snicket's protection.

  • Daniel Handler was autographing copies of The Grim Grotto on behalf of Lemony Snicket, but he couldn't get through the mob in the time - some 200 people were turned away autograph-less, even though Handler's time was extended an extra half-hour.

  • Handler should have a publisher like Christopher Paolini's publisher, Knopf, which cracked the whip to make sure Paolini got through as many fans as he could before his time ran out. We were lucky enough to get an advance copy of Eldest, and we'll post a review as it gets closer to the publication date.

  • Cornelia Funke's new book, Inkspell, sequel to the bestselling Inkheart, had a line stretching almost as far as the line for Eldest. We got there early to get a copy. We got in line, and next thing we knew, the line stretched around the corner. We have started reading Inkspell, and it promises to be just as good, if not better, than Inkheart!

  • We were disappointed that Jonathan Stroud wasn't at the show. The autographing schedule had indicated that he would be autographing the third book in the Bartimaeus trilogy, but apparently his plans changed and he couldn't be there. We did find out the title of book 3: Ptolemy's Gate, and it looks like it will be available in January or February.

  • Tamora Pierce was there, signing advance copies of The Will of the Empress. her upcoming book which reunites the four now-grown heroes of the Circle of Magic series. We had previously met her at a science fiction convention, so we stopped by to say hello. She is really funny and nice.

  • We also got advance copies of The River of Zadaa (Pendragon, Book 6), The Oaken Throne (The Deptford Histories, Book 2), Shadows on the Stars (The Great Tree of Avalon, Book 2), Bruce Coville's new book, Thor's Wedding Day, and a host of other lesser known but still interesting looking books. Look for reviews of these books coming up in future months.

Visit our Forthcoming Books page to find out more about these and other titles coming soon!