New Release Review and Giveaway! ROYAL CRUSH by Meg Cabot (From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess #3)

Title: ROYAL CRUSH
Author: Meg Cabot
Pub. Date: August 1, 2017
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 192
Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

 

Being the newest princess of Genovia is WAY more complicated than she expected, but Olivia Grace Clarisse Mignonette Harrison is getting used to it. She gets to live in an actual palace with two fabulous poodles, a pet iguana, her very own pony, and, best of all, a loving family to help her figure things out!

And right now Olivia, having finally admitted that she likes Prince Khalil as more than just a friend, could REALLY use some advice. What is a princess supposed to do once she’s found a prince she likes? With her half-sister Mia busy enjoying her honeymoon, Olivia turns to Grandmere for help.

The third book in the middle-grade Princess Diaries spin-off series, written and illustrated by New York Times-bestselling author Meg Cabot.

Find it: AmazonBarnes&NobleiBooksTBDGoodreads

 

Review:

So adorable!

As much as I loved Meg Cabot’s The Princess Diaries series, I just might like her From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess ones even more. We still have many of the characters we love from the YA books (Mia! Michael! Grandmere! An older version of Rocky!) but now we’re seeing them through the eyes of Mia’s half-sister, a current seventh grader and future wildlife artist. Add in middle school drama (which yes, is significant when you’re in–or even just work with or live with those who are in–middle school, but let’s face it, is waaaay less angsty than high school drama) and a main character who’s not only dealing with being a newly discovered princess but also has had to move to a different country–her family’s country–and you’ve got a great basis for a series.

In book three, Royal Crush, Olivia’s got a lot going on, as usual. Mia’s about ready to have her twins (and yes, she has them–and no, I’m not telling their gender or names; read it yourself!), there’s a nasty strain of virus ravishing Genovia, her school is all set to compete in the Royal School Winter Games (she wants to stay home and let her new niece and nephew imprint on her like baby ducks, but her plans here might be foiled by factors beyond her control), and she’s not sure why Prince Khalil doesn’t seem quite as friendly as he had over the summer. And isn’t sure if she cares. Because they’re just friends. Or, maybe they’re not. But maybe they are…

Ah, middle school.

Throughout it all, Olivia brings a fresh voice to the world of the Genovian royals and keeps us up to date with what’s going on with the Renaldos. Though this book would work pretty well as a standalone–Olivia keeps us current on most of what we need to know going in to the story–it really will have the most impact if you’ve read the other two. Plus, the characters and writing are so much fun you’re going to want to know the whole story–so go ahead and put them all on your TBR ASAP!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

About Meg:

Meg Cabot is a #1 New York Times bestselling author of books for both adults and tweens/teens. There have been over 25 million copies of Meg’s nearly 80 published books sold in 38 countries. Her last name rhymes with habit, as in “her books can be habit forming.” She currently lives in Key West, Florida with her husband and various cats.
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Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a finished copy of ROYAL CRUSH, US Only.

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New Release Review! PROPOSAL by Meg Cabot (The Mediator #6.5)

Proposal
by Meg Cabot

Synopsis:

The last place Suze Simon expects to find herself during Valentine’s Day is a cemetery. But that’s what happens when you’re a mediator – cursed with the “gift” of communicating with the dead.

That’s how Suze has ended up at the graves of a pair of NCDPs – Non-Compliant Deceased Persons – whose drama didn’t end with death. It’s Suze’s job to make sure they move on—for good.

But the NCDPs aren’t the only ones with problems. The reason Suze is spending her Valentine’s Day with the undead instead of her boyfriend, Jesse, is because he’s having so much trouble adjusting to life after death . . . not surprising, considering the fact that he used to be an NCDP himself, and now his girlfriend busts his former kind for a living, while he tries to cure his kind of what used to ail him.

Can Suze use her mediating skills to propose a mutual resolution, and bring all these young lovers together – including Jesse and herself – especially on the night Saint Valentine declared sacred to romance?

Or will she end up alone—and possibly undead—herself?

Review:

I was ridiculously excited to hear that Ms. Cabot was giving us a prequel novella to tide us over until Suze and Jesse’s new novel, Remembrancecomes out next month. Since the semester is still six days away, I dropped everything to read Proposal today.

(Fangirl moment: NEXT MONTH! It’s almost here! It seems like ages ago that Mini Moe #2 and I met Meg Cabot at the Baltimore Book Festival and she told us there was going to be a new Mediator book. It was all we could do to keep our cool and not start jumping up and down in excitement right there on the pavement like we really were inside. And now it’s just DAYS away! Woot!)

Proposal did not disappoint–Suze and Jesse are back, and they’re just as adorable together as always. Suze hasn’t changed all that much, though she’s gotten older–she’s still a bit too impulsive and quick to jump to conclusions, though I suppose she wouldn’t quite be Suze if she weren’t. Once again, though, it’s getting her into trouble. Jesse’s still not going to let her get away with much, and fortunately, he also still knows when it’s time to step in and help save her butt.

Even more fortunately, now he’s corporeal. 🙂

It was fun to catch a quick glimpse into what the rest of Suze’s family is up to–I can’t say that I ever really thought much about what her three stepbrothers would be doing now (okay, maybe David. David was freaking adorable from his first scene to his last), but have to admit that where they all end up makes perfect sense from what I remember of them. I can’t wait to actually “see” them back on the page, along with her mom, stepdad, and Father Dom.

Proposal does a great job of setting up Remembrance, giving us a taste of what it’ll be like to be back in Suze and Jesse’s world, and hinting at some of the drama that is to come in the full-length installment. If you haven’t read the first six books in the series yet, no worries–as she did in each of the other series books, Suze gives a quick recap of what her life as a mediator is like; it should allow you to navigate her world without too much confusion.

Though you know, the quick fix to that situation is to read the first six books, pronto. You’ve got, oh, just under two weeks to get it done 😉

Rating: 4 stars / B+

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Week in Review: What I’m Reading (10-11-2013)

While watching the latest version of Emma with Mini Moe #2 to get ready for the first two episodes of Emma Approved (latest offering from Pemberley Digital, the lovely people who brought us The Lizzie Bennett Diaries), I was suddenly struck with an idea for my NaNo novel. (This is huge, because it usually doesn’t happen until panic mode has set in, somewhere around October 31st. If at all.) For whatever reason, I was fixated on Jane Fairfax this time around, and just how rotten Frank Churchill treats her. To be fair, it does usually bother me, but this time I got really annoyed. So I started thinking–what if Jane didn’t take him back? What if she moved on? Went through with that job she secured for herself? Or…maybe she made him do some big-time, major groveling before she did take him back, but we never got to see it, since it wasn’t known to Emma?

So…I’m writing Jane Fairfax’s story. And possibly Frank Churchill’s too. Though I am not entirely convinced that he can do what he needs to to get her back…time will tell.

(Please don’t tell me that it’s already been written twenty million times, because I don’t want to know. I’ve rewritten my Northanger Abbey modernization twice and then gave up because there’s a bunch out there already…though I really do like it and may pick it up again after all. My latest version wasn’t horrible, even for a first draft. For now I’m just going to go along in my ignorance is bliss bubble, and plan my novel.)

To prepare, I’m currently listening to the audio version of Emma as narrated by Juliet Stevenson, who played Mrs. Elton in the Gwyneth Paltrow version. Since I’m at a particularly anti-Mr. Elton part right now, it’s especially amusing.

I ordered Everyday Life in Regency and Victorian England and Pride and Prejudice: Paper Dolls (very important for research purposes, surely) in print and picked up What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew and Jane Austen’s England in the B&N store with my teacher discount, since it’s currently Educator Days there. Behind Jane Austen’s Door was a Nook purchase–for $2.99, I couldn’t say no. Research will ensue. I may also get Fashions in the Era of Jane Austen on Kindle, because it’s not a bad price either. In print, though, it’s ridiculous.

For non-research purposes, I finished Meg Cabot’s The Bride Wore Size 12 on audio and it was just as entertaining as the other Heather Wells books. The narrator wasn’t my favorite, but the book was good nonetheless.

On ebook I read and enjoyed Annie Seaton’s Dangerous Desire (reviewed earlier this week) and A Very Scandalous Holiday, an anthology of holiday-themed novellas that I’m featuring on Sunday. I’m about halfway done with Her Accidental Boyfriend by Robin Bielman, the second in her Secret Wishes series. It’s adorable so far. Next up I think I’ll pick up Annie Seaton’s latest, Outback Affair.

I also read a bunch of essays written by eighth graders on four different types of government and which one they felt was more effective. But I’m trying to block the entire experience out of my head, so that’s all we’re going to say about it here.

Instead, I’ll go watch the first two episodes of Emma Approved again. In the name of research.

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Books on Sale: Meg Cabot’s Size 12 is Not Fat (Heather Wells mystery series #1) is the B&N Spotlight Book!

 

Meg Cabot has been one of my favorite authors for years now, and I really enjoy her Heather Wells romantic mysteries series. After Mini Moe#2 finished Cabot’s YA books and series, the Heather Wells books were next up for her, and she loves them as much as I do, if not more. (I’m reading book five, The Bride Wore Size 12, right now–though MM#2 finished it first, darn her.)

Each–month? few weeks? I’m not sure, actually, how long each spotlight lasts, so be sure to get it while you can) Barnes & Noble features an author on their Nook book home page, and offers one of their novels for sale at a temporary low price. Right now Meg’s their spotlight author, and Size 12 is Not Fat is on sale for $1.99.

So far, Amazon isn’t price matching–though I’m sure they will soon.

Just to add to the celebration:

And now, excuse me while I go listen to some more of book 5 in the series….

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The Week in Review: What I’m Reading, and a Must-See PSA for Breast Cancer Awareness Month (10/5/13)

I love this video in a way that’s probably not exactly healthy. It gives me something to look forward to every October–I try not to watch it all year long. Now that I’ve got a semi-intelligent phone, though, I’m definitely going to pick up that app.

In the interest of keeping healthy, of course. That’s all. Honest.

Back to the real world this week–no more Baltimore Book Festival. (Until next year, at least. My sister-in-law said in a text as we chugged away via train on Monday that “we’d be glad to have you back”. I’m keeping it as evidence, and will bring it out next September as needed. ;))

So…on the long, arduous train journey (long because of the inevitable delays by train, arduous because I had to sit with Mini Moe#2, who is not known for her patience), I did get a lot of reading done. I read all four of the Ever After titles that were being released that day: Wish Upon a Star by Michelle McLean, Haunted Chemistry by Lindsey R. Loucks, Ruby Hill by Sarah Ballance, and Mercy by Jan Coffey. I especially enjoyed the last two.

Next I picked up Susan Mallery’s Christmas on 4th Street, which I received through NetGalley. It was better than the last few books in the series at least. Review is coming. Now I’m reading Annie Seaton’s Dangerous Desire for an upcoming blog post; Shock Me by Ashley C. Harris is waiting in the wings.

On audio, I finished Jennifer Lynn Barnes’s The Squad: Perfect Cover which I absolutely loved. It didn’t hurt that one of my favorite narrators, Amanda Ronconi, reads it–but the story was a lot of fun all on its own. Geeky High school girl turns-spy-cum-cheerleader. I’m planning on reading book two in the series (Killer Spirit) soon, but will do so knowing there’s probably no more books to come in that series since they both came out in 2008.

Drat.

Mini Moe#2 was actually finished with The Bride Wore Size 12 before I even got to start it, darn that girl–but I’m finally listening to it now. So far it was definitely worth the wait.

What are you reading this weekend? Which guy would you pick for your “man reminder“? (By the way, I just Googled the app, and not only is it free but it is “now with more hot guys”! Win-win! Excuse me while I go download.)

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Week in Review: What I’m Reading (and didn’t have time to read–because, hello–Baltimore Book Festival! 9-29-13)

I know, I know--finally going to take a look at the welcome sign on the last day. I get the irony.

I know, I know–finally going to take a look at the welcome sign on the last day. I get the irony.

 

Well, the Baltimore Book Festival is over, and we’re on our way back to the real world again. Sadly. But we did have an awesome time, talked and listened to lots of interesting people, and increased our TBR piles by…well, a lot. (That latter bit is a good thing, right? I’m going to say yes.)

So…not a ton of reading got done last week, but I’m planning on playing catch up on the long train ride back. As soon as I finish my post, that is.

I read and reviewed Ivy Entwined by Laura Simcox, a new-to-me author who I plan on reading again. I liked her quirky style. Since I’ve argued with flight attendants before about using ereaders during the ascent and descent (and since our flight was so short that’s practically all it was), I decided just to avoid the hoopla and read a print title, so I started Mary Balogh’s The Arrangement, which I am loving. It’s going to be hard to focus on work this week knowing it’s waiting for me. The hero is a blind war veteran. And he’s awesome.

I read the short YA novella (70 pages) The Dating Tutor by Melissa Frost over the weekend, and will be posting a review and an interview with the author tomorrow. It was a really cute debut. (But isn’t on Goodreads yet. I might have to sign up as a librarian and add it, gosh darn it.)

Next up I’ve got a handful of novellas to read for Entangled’s Ever After line–reviews to follow later on this week. In the meantime, check out the associated giveaways here.

On audio I finished Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren–fantastic finish, even though the ending was a bit problematic for me (I had a hard time getting past the she’s-his-intern part of the beginning), and I went right into the sequel novella, Beautiful Bitch It was okay, but not as satisfying as the first, since most of the darn good reasons for drama were missing. Since I finished that one a day too early for Meg Cabot’s new release, The Bride Wore Size 12, Mini Moe #2 decided it was time for me to start listening to Jennifer Lynn Barnes’s The Squad: Perfect Cover. It’s an entertaining YA cheerleader squad-masquerading as spies novel, which is good–but now Mini Moe #2 is more than halfway done with Bride and I can’t even start it yet. Grrrr. All part of her plan, I’m sure.

(Yeah, confirmed. She just stuck out her tongue in a very snotty way.)

Last day of the festival was awesome. Most of the panels we attended had to do with the craft of writing–there’s 32 days left until NaNoWriMo, after all–and they were all great. The first one was The Craft of Writing with Cristi Barth, Stephanie Draven, Jean Murray, Christie Kelley, and Kate Dolan. (No pic, because the photographer was at the Writing for Video Games discussion instead.) They had some really great information about how they write and general advice for writers. I’m determined to use Scrivener even more effectively this year because of it. I refuse to be cowed by the month of November!

Much.

Next up was The Part-Time Writer, which I missed the beginning of because I was chatting in the back of the tent. I still got some good ideas for time management–I’m seeing more lists in my future–and have hope that I’ll eventually finish a novel I actually like some day.

part time

The Part-Time Writer, with (L to R) Elisabeth Staab, Ann Arbaugh, Laura Wellig, Misty Waters, Robin Covington, and P.J. Schnyder

I wanted to sit for Writing the Hot Contemporary, but Mini Moe #2 wasn’t sure she could take it and we were both starving anyway so we met Mini Moe #1 and his uncle for lunch. We finished up just in time to catch Writing a Fiction Series, which both Mini Moe #2 and I were looking forward to.

Series

Writing a Fiction Series, with (L to R) A.C. Arthur, Andrew Grey, Elisabeth Staab, Brigid Kemmerer, and Jean Murray

 

Mini Moe #2 was shocked to find out that A.C. Arthur doesn’t like puppies (“How can she not like puppies?” she asked, multiple times). I love reading books in a series, but suspect I’ll have to at least journey over to the dark side of the plotters if I’m going to write them.

Darn it.

Finally, Mini Moe #2 and I (MM#1 went back with his uncle), made our way over to the Literary Salon to prepare for the Meg Cabot/Jennifer Armentrout talk. If we made a slight detour by the Island Cow Ice Cream stand, no one will tell, right? We sat in for the very end of Jason Mott’s talk about his debut book The Returned (on my TBR list, because it sounds good and creepy) and then got front row seats for Meg. And Jen.

Meg and Jen II

Jen Armentrout! Meg Cabot! Live and in person!

Both authors were wonderful–funny, personable, and I wanted to run right home as soon as it was over and read (or re-read, as the case may be) every single thing they ever wrote. The BBF people were taping it, so if (when) they post it online and we find it, I’ll give a link. It was really a great talk.

Meg and Jen

We didn’t want it to end! Except that we had books (and a Kindle) for them to sign, which they weren’t going to do up on stage

 

Both authors recognized us from earlier in the weekend, but neither indicated that they felt like they were being stalked. (Phew!) And they were super nice about signing our things and chatting. We would absolutely go see either of them again anytime, anywhere. If only money were no object…but then that would probably be more stalker-like, wouldn’t it?

Probably better this way.

Hope your week is full of lots of great stuff to read–stay tuned, because this week’s posting schedule is busy!

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Baltimore Book Festival Day One: Fan Girl Alert!

photo (15)

Mini Moe #2 with one of her favorite authors!

 

Let me start by saying that Mini Moe #2 decided a week ago that she needed her own distinct text ringtone on my phone. She picked her own–it’s called Sci-Fi, and it’s got a very eerie feel to it. One could say it’s very Twilight Zone-ish. The kind of ringtone you don’t really want to suddenly hear while you’re working all alone in your place of work that may or may not be haunted. It also stands out in a not-so-great way when you’re in a very small, quite busy, yet somehow quiet mini-mart in the heart of Baltimore’s Mount Vernon section, buying a couple of sodas and a small packet of Tylenol.

The messages I was getting?

Mini Moe #2: OMG I SEE MEG!!!

me: Ok, fan girl

MM#2: She is right there!!!!!

me: Uh huh. My ringtone is scaring people in the minimart

MM#2: Good omg I can’t believe it she is right there

me: Yes, honey. So you said.

By this time, we’re finally checking out. And I’ve now silenced my phone, because the weird looks were disconcerting.

MM#2: Just omg!!!

Totally adorable. When Mini Moe #1 and I got back to the tent, she was practically vibrating out of her seat with joy.

And then Meg Cabot came up for her panel, and…well, the whole trip was totally worth it, just to see her so excited.

Just in case her day wasn’t enough awesome with awesome sauce, MM#2 also won a gift basket of goodies from author Nancy Weeks at the Putting the Suspense in Romance panel. Her birthday was six days away from Nancy’s, which was how the winner was selected. Actually, Mini Moe #1’s birthday was also six days away from it in the other direction–it’s like we were fated to win. MM#1 and I were taking that basket–and the bag o’ books that MM#2 bought earlier in the day and had signed by most of the Young Adult Paranormal Fiction panel–back to the car when MM#2 had her first Meg sighting. And the rest was history….

Clearly, day one was a huge success, even if we missed the Jane Austen panel due to a parking lot mishap, blocked off streets, and an inordinate number of one-ways. I told MM#1 I would give him kudos for his navigation skills, even if he still has yet to learn that a person cannot make a left-hand turn when in busy traffic and the right-hand lane, and that saying, “That was the road you were supposed to turn down” just after one passes it is not as helpful as something like, “This road right up here will be our turn.” Still, we got there and back in one piece and he was very good at ignoring the slightly bad words that I might have said once or twice when the map was not our friend. And now he’s darn near an expert at telling the iMap app to “go to [insert desired address here] from current location.”

So it’s all good.

Here’s some of MM# 2’s pics from some of the panels we heard today:

photo (14)

Writing Historical Fiction, with (L to R) Stephanie Dray, Kate Quinn, Laura Tilley, and Terri Brisbin

photo (13)

Young Adult Paranormal Fiction, with (L to R): Alethea Kontis, Dawn Rae Miller, Lea Nolan, Diana Peterfreund, Bridgid Kemmerer, and Jennifer L. Armentrout

Notice the banner? It fell down during the Hot Paranormal Fiction panel (when my phototographer was at the Graphic Novel D.I.Y. workshop), and may or may not have been knocked down by a ghost that Joya Fields brought to the festival.

photo (12)

Putting the Suspense in Romance, with (L to R) Geri Krotow (mostly blocked), Regina Jeffers, Joya Fields, Rebecca York, Robin Covington, and (off camera) Nancy Weeks

MM#2’s basket is on the corner of the table closest to the camera!

photo (11)

Fantasy Elements in Romance, with (L to R) Vivi Dumas, Dawn Rae Miller, Jennifer L. Armentrout, Catherine Asaro, Stephanie Draven, Robin Kaye

photo (10)

Chocolate and Romance, with (L to R) Christie Kelley, Meg Cabot, and Christi Barth (Eliza Knight, Robin Covington, and Laura Kaye are off camera)

 

It was a fantastic day, even if every time I managed to come up with a question to ask someone else asked it first or the panelists answered it without being asked. All of the talks were very entertaining, the food was delicious, and the number of books in my TBR pile increased by roughly a bazillion, give or take a few.

All of the authors were fantastic, especially the ones who signed MM#2’s books for her. Special shout-outs go to Lea Nolan, Diana PeterfreundAlethea Kontis, and Brigid Kemmerer, who I’m pretty sure now have fans for life in both of us.

Should someone warn Meg Cabot that we’ll be back for her Book Group talk with Jennifer L. Armentrout on Sunday?

Nah… 😉

In the meantime, bring on day two!

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What I’m Reading: Week in Review (9/21/13)

It’s official–fall is here. I’d be more bummed, except that in this case it means we’re that much closer to the day we leave for the Baltimore Book Festival! Yes! It’s almost here! We’ll be spending this week packing, doing laundry (thank goodness for audiobooks!), and planning which talks and workshops we want to go to…oh, and school, of course. Can’t forget school.

Though sometimes we’d like to–especially during the week of Parent Information Night. I’m going to really earn those personal days this week. But I digress….

I read the two books in Sarah Mayberry’s Matthews sisters series–Her Favorite Rival and Her Favorite Temptation. Loved them both. Sarah Mayberry has such a way with characters–even if I’ve seen one of them in another book and been not so crazy about them (Leah in Temptation, for example)–she somehow makes me love them anyway when they have their own book.

I need to finish Laura Simcoe’s Ivy Entwined and read Melissa Frost’s The Dating Tutor this week, to get ready for upcoming interviews with the authors (9/25 and 10/1 respectively). Next up I really need to get to Covet by Tracey Garvis-Graves, now that I finally have a file from Penguin First to Read that I can read! (Long story. The short of it is that my computer apparently doesn’t like the First to Read files much, and I really need to try to get into them to read before the weekend before a book comes out to discover if I can actually read it or not. Note to self.)

In audio, I read the second Mortal Instruments book, City of Ashes. Though I did enjoy it quite a bit, I’m more confused than ever about how they’ll manage a second movie given some of the choices they made in making the first. I’m waiting more or less patiently for book three to be available on audio from the library.

Next I read Molly Harper’s My Bluegrass Baby, her most recent book and the first in her Bluegrass series. It’s straight-up contemporary; and though I love her paranormals (the Jane Jameson books and the spin-off series Half Moon Hollow are awesome, and don’t even get me started on the Naked Werewolf books) I think I’d read the back of a cereal box if it was written by her. Especially if Amanda Ronconi narrated it. I love, love, love Molly Harper’s wicked sense of humor, and Ronconi is one of my favorite audiobook narrators ever.

Ever the procrastinator, I just started the book we’re reading for this Thursday’s “meeting” of the Harlequin Junkie’s HEA Book ClubBeautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren. Oh. My. Goodness. It’s intense, and I’m loving it–but at the same time feeling it’s not at all appropriate for me to listen to on my way to work. Or home from work. Or while walking a 5K charity walk with my children. Or even in the same building as my children. Maybe even the same town, come to think of it. But it’s…wow…anyway. And I’ll undoubtedly be picking up the rest of the books. Soon.

Maybe I can stretch the reading of it out until Meg Cabot (who will be at the Baltimore Book Festival!!!!)’s new book, The Bride Wore Size 12 comes out on Tuesday…but probably not. I might have to fill in with something short in the meantime. A nice, tame YA book, maybe. 😉

On the minus side, I didn’t get as much reading in as I’d like to have done this week. On the plus side, I’m not yet behind on my grading…can I say it’s a draw?

What are you reading this weekend?

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Baltimore Book Festival–It’s Coming! (And We’re Hopefully Going!)

Mini Moe #2 and I were beyond excited to hear that MEG CABOT is going to be at the Baltimore Book Festival next month! Here’s the details from their website:

ENTER A WORLD OF LITERARY ADVENTURE THIS FALL WITH THE
BALTIMORE BOOK FESTIVAL ON SEPTEMBER 27-29, 2013

From best-selling books and e-readers to celebrity and local authors, come celebrate the art of the written word at the Baltimore Book Festival. The mid-Atlantic’s premier celebration of the literary arts returns on Friday, September 27 and Saturday, September 28 from noon to 8pm and Sunday, September 29 from noon to 7pm in Mount Vernon Place, centered on the 600 block of North Charles Street.

The 2013 author highlights include Gar Alperovitz, What Then Must We Do?: Straight Talk About the Next American Revolution; Peggielene “King Peggy” Bartels, King Peggy, the One Maryland One Book, presented by the Maryland Humanities Council; Meg Cabot, Size 12 is the New Black; and Jason Mott, The Returned. Presenting authors are announced periodically, throughout the period preceding the festival. The 18th annual Baltimore Book Festival is presented by Mayor Stephanie RawlingsBlake and produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.

The three-day festival features more than 200 celebrated novelists and celebrity and regional authors, readings, panel discussions, book signings, cooking demonstrations, workshops, exhibitors, children’s activities, live music and an assortment of foods and beverages, located throughout the site.

Programs for the festival take place on 11 stages, including the Literary Salon, Food for Thought Stage, Children’s Bookstore Stage, CityLit Stage, Radical Bookfair Pavilion, Maryland Romance Writers, Third Eye Comics, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, The George Peabody Library, Enoch Pratt Free Library and the Baltimore Book Festival Music Stage.

#Booklovers can get a first look at presenting authors and news from the Baltimore Book Festival, literary-related events and top selling books at @facebook.com/BaltimoreBookFestival and on Twitter by following @BmoreBookFest.

For more information on the Baltimore Book Festival, call 1-877-BALTIMORE or visit www.baltimorebookfestival.org.

Free! It’s free! All you have to do is get yourself to Baltimore (where my brother very conveniently lives–thanks, Bro-man!) and carefully plan your three days of book-related goodness and author stalking presentations. The schedule is now up, so plan away….

There’s even an app, to make your planning easier:

I think I’m going to be camped out at the Maryland Romance Writer’s Stage for most of it. Not only will there be lots of fabulous authors there, but their schedule includes items like “Jane Austen Fiction” (celebrating the 100th anniversary of P&P!), “Chocolate & Romance” (with free samples!), “Blogging About Books” (self-explanatory), “Craft: Plotting vs. Pantsing” (just in time for NaNoWriMo!), “The Part-Time Writer” (ditto), “Paranormal Bad Boys” (again, no explanation needed), and more!

Seriously. They use the word plethora on their site (as in, the “Baltimore Book Festival has a plethora of activities for festival goers”). Obviously, I must go.

I’m (cough, cough!) feeling a little ill. I think I should get a substitute for the entire week, don’t you? Just to properly prepare myself….

Have you ever been to a book festival? Would you want to go if you had the chance?

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