Friday, June 29, 2007

ALA and then some

Books are alive and well in case you doubted it. Publishers were pushing galleys on us at every turn but I also had the chance to acquire some autographed hard copies. I'm especially pleased that I met Joyce Carol Oates and have a copy of The Gravedigger's Daughter to delve into. I actually was a bit greedy I guess, as I need to mail home a box of books or face a penalty for an overweight suitcase!

My biggest disappointment at the conference was the cancelation of Khaled Hosseini who apparently had a family emergency. Not that Patricia Cornwell, his replacement, is any slouch in the fame department. I guess it just indicates how my reading tastes have matured over the past several years. Those who heard her said she was fantastic. My friend Maryellen and I attended the ALEX awards presentation one afternoon. These honor cross over books written for adults but perfect for referring to young adults, or vice-versa. The surprise guest was Jeannette Walls who wrote book club fave The Glass Castle, an inspiring speaker whose book I'm ashamed to say I've avoided because I just didn't want to hear one more lament about a dysfunctional family. I've changed my mind.

Susan Vreeland had FOLUSA tea attendees all verklempt as she spoke of the ILL efforts of her local library while she was writing Girl in Hyacinth Blue and recuperating from a bone marrow transplant. Joyce Carol Oates spoke of her grandmother, subject of her latest book, declaring "the Irish will break your heart." Frank Delaney responded by opining that Oates should be the first American winner of the Nobel Prize for literature! Most delightful of all was a young Australian writer, Markus Zusak, whose book The Book Thief was sadly lost in transit. I can't wait to get my hands on a copy.

Ok, the sun's out and, since I'm typing from the dining room table overlooking the Chesapeake Bay, (eat your hearts out) I'm done for today. My omelet and biscuits are almost ready!


Infobabe said...

Welcome back to your I have missed you!

Andrea said...

Lots of fun reading about your ALA adventures! Now you need to be sure this gets in the Communique, until we are all library 2.0 ready and blogging!

toomanybooks said...

Hi! Love your comments on ALA, but find it strange that there is no mention of chocolate martinis!

Ann said...

Loved reading about ALA. Glad you were having breakfast fixed for you. Miss you. Looking forward to hearing more about ALA in person!