This past weekend I attended BookCon in New York City with my good friend, Kelsea. We had previously attended BookCon when it came to Chicago in 2016. We’ve been dying to go again, so we decided to splurge this year and buy ourselves VIP tickets (I highly recommend VIP tickets if you are looking to go to BookCon).
We had an epic time! It was a fun-filled, exhausting, and a book lovers dream.
I had absolutely no idea what I was doing or what to expect when I went to BookCon back in 2016. This year I was able to prepare and plan out my day which is an absolute MUST DO if you plan to attend. I used the BookCon website and publisher websites/social media to plan out my days and find out when events are occurring. This is especially helpful to find out about advanced reader copy (ARC) drops. I also used twitter during the two days of the convention. I turned on the alert notifications for all of the publishers and authors I was interested in. For example, PenguinTeen tweeted out the “passwords” to receive certain ARCs. I wouldn’t have known this if I didn’t have their tweet notifications on.
One of my favorite parts of attending BookCon is getting to meet some of my favorite authors. It is amazing to be able to talk with them and express my appreciation for their writing. This year I got to meet (from top to bottom & left to right) Alexandra Bracken, Tomi Adeyemi, Abbi Jacobsen, Marissa Meyer, Laini Taylor, the Dear Evan Hansen guys, Stephanie Garber, and (not pictured) S.A. Chakraborty, R.F. Kuang, and James “Murr” Murray. FYI most of the authors at BookCon required a purchase for signing, but also signed items brought from home.
I always get nervous before meeting authors because I don’t know what to say! However, all of these authors (except the Dear Evan Hansen guys because it was extremely quick) were so easy to talk to! It sounds cliché, but they are book lovers just like us!
I unfortunately only attended one panel at BookCon this year due to scheduling conflicts. There were a lot I wanted to go to, but it just didn’t work out. I did attend Magic & Power with Tomi Adeyemi, Cassandra Clare, Marissa Meyer, and Brandon Sanderson which was super interesting and fun. I did get to attend a panel at Barnes & Noble the night before BookCon with Renee Ahdieh, Melissa de la Cruz, Marie Lu, Ransom Riggs, and Sabaa Tahir. It was awesome to be able to see some of the authors that I wouldn’t be seeing at BookCon.
Another huge aspect of the BookCon weekend is getting swag, free books, and advanced reader copies. It is so much fun to look at your haul at the end of the weekend. I added two pictures of my BookCon 2018 haul! I only brought 3 of those books with me to be signed and purchased 7 there. In total, I got 13 books (and 1 laptop skin) signed from 10 different authors.
I also received several highly anticipated ARCs that I am super pumped about – Rule by Ellen Goodlett, Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte, and The Devil’s Thief by Lisa Maxwell. I am extremely excited about all three of these books. Rule was the first thing my friend and I did on Saturday morning…we went immediately to the NOVL booth to get it.
I did not know that ARCs of The Devil’s Thief would be available, but I was talking with the girls at the Simon Riveted booth and they let me know it would be a prize at their carnival game. I was thrilled!!! I was unable to get it on Saturday due to atrocious lines for the game, but I made sure to be at the booth at exactly 11:00 on Sunday. I was over the moon when I won The Devil’s Thief. For those of you who haven’t read the first book (The Last Magician) in this series by Lisa Maxwell, I highly recommend it! It has all of my favorite things…time travel, fantasy, historical elements, magic, and heists. Also the cover is GORGEOUS.
Four Dead Queens was probably the “biggest” ARC I was able to get at BookCon. Prior to the event, PenguinTeen announced they would be having a secret ARC drop of a highly anticipated 2019 release. I knew it would be a long shot, but I wanted to at least try to get one. I went to the PenguinTeen booth about 20 minutes before the designated drop time and it was a madhouse! There were swarms of people all waiting and a ton of security. I luckily ran into two girls, Ivy and Drew, that I had met the previous day in line. We decided to stick together, and that was the best decision I made. Drew decided to check out the other side of the booth while Ivy and I held our spots. Penguin announced they were moving the line and everyone scrambled to get there. Since Drew already went that way, she was able to get a great spot in line. Ivy and I joined her and all three of us were able to get copies of the secret ARC, Four Dead Queens. Huge shout out to Ivy and Drew because I would not have been able to get a copy if I hadn’t joined with them. Meeting people is one of the most fun parts of BookCon. There are a lot of lines involved, so it’s nice to talk with the people near you in line. And it can pay off in situations like this!
BookCon was a blast and a huge success! By the end of the weekend I was exhausted and so sore, but it was 100% worth it. It was so fun to be surrounded by authors, books, and book lovers. I can’t wait for next year!!