Wednesday, October 17, 2012

book bonanza, part 1

colorful Tacoma from the 17th floor
Last weekend I attended the Pacific Northwest Booksellers' Association fall trade show with a few hundred booksellers, authors, librarians, and publisher sales reps.   The event took place at the Hotel Murano, just a few blocks from the Museum of Glass in downtown Tacoma.  Each floor of the hotel features a different glass artist, and each time the elevator doors opened a new surprise was unveiled.  It would have been fun to take a walk down each hall, but I just didn't have the time.  I guess I'll have to go back!

On Saturday evening, after a day filled with educational sessions, a horde of booksellers descended upon King's Books for a party celebrating several Northwest authors.  After a bit of mingling, each of half a dozen authors spoke for about five minutes. 

Jennie Shortridge (whose When She Flew rocks!) talked about her new novel Love, Water, Memory (kudos to the cover designer!) and the non-profit group Seattle 7 Writers, which promotes literacy in Seattle and King County through projects and events including pocket libraries in food banks, homeless shelters, and other locations.  These folks are staunch supporters of independent bookstores, libraries, and other literacy organizations and programs like 826 and Writers in the Schools.  So much to love! And they're nice people too!

Among the authors was one of my favorite Northwest artists, Nikki McClure, who told the story of her latest book (actually the first book she ever made), Apple, and another, How to Be a Cat, due in Spring of 2013.   I got a peek at the cat book, and I think it's one of her best.  I've had her gorgeous calendars on my living wall every year since 2006, and I'm excited to head to Bellevue and see Cutting Her Own Path, a retrospective of her work that starts November 13 at the Bellevue Art Museum.

If you know me at all, you know I'm a food enthusiast, so it will come as no surprise that I was excited to meet Seattle chef & restauranteur Tom Douglas and pick up a copy of his new Dahlia Bakery Cookbook.  Douglas is the kind of guest everyone wants at a party: funny, personable, and bearing several boxes of delicious treats!  Maple eclairs, pecan brownies, gingersnaps, chocolate chip cookies, and his famous triple coconut cream pie kept party-goers hovering around his table. 

Many thanks to our host, the inimitable Sweet Pea, owner of King's Books, and the staff, both human and feline, who probably had a sizeable mess to clean up when the rest of us headed back to the hotel for the Nightcapper party and met another 30 or so authors.

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