Authors Visiting Boulder - Fall 2018
August 24th - Kelly deVos Fat Girl on a Plane BOOKED
About the book: Cookie Vonn dreams of getting out of Phoenix, attending Parsons School of Design and becoming the next great fashion designer. But in fashion, being fat is a cardinal sin—and Cookie weighs over three hundred pounds. It doesn't help that she's constantly compared to her supermodel mother—and named after a dessert. But Cookie's not about to let her weight define her. Thanks to her hard work for a Scottsdale fashion blog, Cookie scores a trip to New York to meet her design idols—where she hopes to personally pitch her plus-size portfolio and appeal for a scholarship to Parsons. Her plans are put on standby when she's declared too fat too fly. Cookie is forced a second seat on the plane only to arrive in the city to find the blog is under new ownership. Cookie has been replaced by the boss’s daughter, a girl who's everything she's not – ultra thin and super rich. Hurt and humiliated, Cookie takes a hard look at the choices she makes and the people she wants around her. She determines to lose weight and take charge of her life.
Fast-forward two years, a more-than-determined Cookie has dropped the weight and won the attention of her designer idol Gareth Miller. Gareth offers Cookie the proposition of a lifetime – to live and study fashion in New York – and Cookie can’t help but be taken in by the irresistibly handsome Gareth. But the illusion only lasts so long. Soon, Cookie realizes she’s become immersed in a world more interested in putting women down than building them up, while her dream of creating great clothes for people of all sizes grows more distant by the day. Is it possible that life doesn’t get better when you’re skinny? Cookie has a big choice to make: start a new life with people who never would have accepted her before, or return her old one. Or maybe there's a third option, if Cookie dares to define her own future and embrace the girl she always was and is meant to be.
About the Author: A third generation native Arizonan, Kelly deVos can tell you everything you’ve ever wanted to know about cactus, cattle and climate. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing from Arizona State University. Kelly is represented by Kathleen Rushall of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Her debut novel, FAT GIRL ON A PLANE is available now from Harlequin Teen and her work has been featured in the New York Times and on SheKnows and Bustle.
Kelly is also a passionate advocate for body positivity and fat acceptance.
About the Presentation: Kelly has a presentation that starts off with her experience being too fat too fly and then discusses Claire McCardell (the designer who is Cookie's inspiration in the novel). She talks about why she feels plus-size fashion is the next iteration of McCardell's philosophy.
September 5th - Ellen Hopkins People Kill People AVAILABLE Ellen will also have an event at the store
About the book: People Kill People is a timely novel in both verse and prose illustrating the potential different ways guns kill people (suicide, homicide, accident).
People kill people. Guns just make it easier.
A gun is sold in the classifieds after killing a spouse, bought by a teenager for needed protection. But which was it? Each has the incentive to pick up a gun, to fire it. Was it Rand or Cami, married teenagers with a young son? Was it Silas or Ashlyn, members of a white supremacist youth organization? Daniel, who fears retaliation because of his race, who possessively clings to Grace, the love of his life? Or Noelle, who lost everything after a devastating accident, and has sunk quietly into depression?
One tense week brings all six people into close contact in a town wrought with political and personal tensions. Someone will fire. And someone will die. But who?
People Kill People will start a discussion about a topic that is tearing this country apart.
About the Author: Ellen Hopkins is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of thirteen young adult novels, as well as the adult novels Triangles, Collateral, and Love Lies Beneath. She lives with her family in Carson City, Nevada, where she founded Ventana Sierra, a nonprofit youth housing and resource initiative. Visit her at EllenHopkins.com and on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter at @EllenHopkinsLit.
About the Presentation: 40-minute PowerPoint that describes Ellen's path from childhood through her teen years, to bestselling author, all the way up to now.
September 24th through 28th - Emily Whitman The Turning AVAILABLE Emily's in-store event
About the Book: All Aran has ever known is the sea. The spray of the waves. The swirl of the deep currents. Feasts of salmon and mussels and crabs.
Aran is a selkie and lives on the open sea with his clan. But he has never quite belonged. He was born without a selkie skin, and he’s stuck in human form, never able to transform into a sleek, powerful seal the way his family does. Then Aran discovers that his clan has been keeping a secret from him. And the secret means Aran may never get his pelt. That he is a danger to the entire clan. That maybe he doesn’t even belong to the sea at all.
So Aran gets his first taste of life on land and all the wonders it holds: trees and birds’ nests and cookies and, most surprising of all, friends.
Yet the land is dangerous, too. When the unimaginable happens, Aran will be forced to choose: Will he fight for his place on land, or listen to the call of the sea?
About the Author: Emily Whitman is the author of two acclaimed books for teenagers, and THE TURNING is her first novel for younger readers. In all her books, myth and magic are a part of everyday life. Emily grew up in Boulder, Colorado and studied history at Harvard and UC Berkeley. She has worked in bookstores and behind library reference desks, and now she teaches writing workshops at the Attic Institute. She lives with her family in Portland, Oregon.
About the Presentation: THE TURNING is great for interdisciplinary units on myth and folklore, and on ocean science and ocean life. Themes of transformation and trying to fit in support Social and Emotional Learning. Let's shape a visit around your school, your kids, and your interests.
Assembly visits (book sale minimum goal of 50 copies): Every child has a story to tell and their own voice to tell it in! I talk about finding the spark of your own story and ways to help that spark grow. I share my love of “adventure research”—using real-world experiences and sense perceptions to bring a story to life. For THE TURNING, a book inspired by Celtic folklore, that included visiting a seal colony where mothers gave their pups rides on their backs! We talk about the writing process: dreaming, drafting, revising, polishing. For middle-grade presentations I go into more detail, sharing my messy marked-up drafts and comparing the first scrawls to the final printed page. Writing is connecting—with others, and with yourself. Let’s leave time for Q & A!
Classroom visits (book sale minimum goal of 25 copies): This is one of my favorite ways to connect. We’ll talk about my book and about writing. I love including a writing exercise, and the moment when even kids who don’t think of themselves as writers find something exciting on the page!
Library visits (book sale minimum goal of 25 copies): A book talk and lots of Q & A.
October 2nd - Shannon Hale, Dean Hale, & LeUyen Pham The Princess in Black & the Science Fair Scare AVAILABLE In-store event!
About the Book: It’s mayhem at the science fair! A squishy goo monster is a challenge for the Princess in Black — but luckily some science-loving princesses are on hand to help. Princess Magnolia is excited. Excited and nervous. She’s going to the Interkingdom Science Fair today to present her poster about seeds and plants, and when she arrives, she sees that her friends are there too! Princess Honeysuckle made a mole habitat, Princess Sneezewort has built a blanket fort, and Tommy Wigtower has a talking volcano that’s saying “EAAAAT!” Wait, what? A surprise goo monster makes this a job for the Princess in Black, and the Princess in Blankets is on the scene to lend a hand. But will two masked heroes be enough to save the science fair? A little scientific problem-solving — and a lot of princess power — will make the sixth entry in the New York Times best-selling series a smash hit.
About the Authors: Shannon Hale and Dean Hale are the award-winning husband-and-wife team behind the Princess in Black series, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. Shannon Hale is also the author of the Newbery Honor novel Princess Academy as well as the New York Times best-selling series Ever After High. Shannon Hale and Dean Hale live in Salt Lake City, Utah.
LeUyen Pham is the illustrator of many books for children, including Real Friends by Shannon Hale and Aunt Mary’s Rose by Douglas Wood. LeUyen Pham lives in California.
About the Presentation: Shannon, Dean, and LeUyen have and exciting presentation that includes original artwork on-the-fly and a science experiment!
October 2nd - Melissa Savage The Truth About Martians AVAILABLE
About the Book: A boy and his best friends set out to discover the aliens who crash-landed next to their Roswell, New Mexico, farm in this charming novel packed with adventure and heart, perfect for fans of Ali Benjamin's The Thing About Jellyfish and Jennifer L. Holm's The Fourteenth Goldfish. Mylo never really believed in Martians, unless they had a starring role in one of his comic books. But then a flying saucer crash-lands next to his Roswell, New Mexico, ranch, and he starts to hear voices--like someone is asking for his help. With his best friend Dibs and crush Gracie by his side, and his Cracker Jack superhero membership card, a slingshot, and a small American flag--for peace--in tow, Mylo sets out on an epic adventure to investigate the crash and find the Martians. But he and his friends end up discovering more about the universe than they ever could have imagined.
About the Author: Melissa Savage is the author of Lemons and a child and family therapist. Even though she's never actually seen a Bigfoot or a Martian in person, Melissa loves to learn and write about the mysteries of cryptozoology for children. She lives in Minneapolis. You can follow Melissa on Twitter at @melissadsavage, and visit her at melissadsavage.com.
October 5th - Kevin Henkes A Parade of Elephants BOOKED (Kevin will also be at the Boulder Public Library)
About the Book: This engaging picture book is just right for the youngest reader and is a perfect choice for story time and bedtime sharing. Up and down, over and under, through and around . . . five big and brightly colored elephants are on a mission in this picture book for young children by Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes. Where are they going? What will they do when they get there? It’s a surprise! With a text shimmering with repetition and rhythm, bright pastel illustrations, large and readable type, and an adorable parade of elephants, Kevin Henkes introduces basic concepts such as numbers, shapes, adjectives, adverbs, and daytime and nighttime. A Parade of Elephants is an excellent choice for story time as well as bedtime sharing.
About the Author: Kevin Henkes is the author and illustrator of more than fifty critically acclaimed and award-winning picture books, beginning readers, and novels. He received the Caldecott Medal for Kitten’s First Full Moon in 2005, and Waiting won a Caldecott Honor and Geisel Honor in 2016. Kevin Henkes is also the creator of a number of picture books featuring his mouse characters, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Lilly’s Big Day and Wemberly Worried, the Caldecott Honor Book Owen, and the beloved Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse. His most recent mouse character, Penny, was introduced in Penny and Her Song; her story continued in Penny and Her Doll and Penny and Her Marble (a Geisel Honor Book). Bruce Handy, in a New York Times Book Review piece about A Good Day, wrote, “It should be said: Kevin Henkes is a genius.” Kevin Henkes received two Newbery Honors for novels—one for his newest novel for young readers, The Year of Billy Miller, and the other for Olive’s Ocean. Also among his fiction for older readers are the novels Junonia, Bird Lake Moon, The Birthday Room, and Sun & Spoon. Kevin Henkes has been published by Greenwillow Books since the release of his first book, All Alone, in 1981. His fiftieth book, the picture book Egg, was published in January 2017, and In the Middle of Fall—his fifty-first book—was published in September 2017.
October 23rd - Molly Brooks Sanity & Tallulah Graphic Novel! AVAILABLE
About the Book: Sanity Jones and Tallulah Vega are best friends on Wilnick, the dilapidated space station they call home at the end of the galaxy. So naturally, when gifted scientist Sanity uses her lab skills and energy allowance to create a definitely-illegal-but-impossibly-cute three-headed kitten, she has to show Tallulah. But Princess, Sparkle, Destroyer of Worlds is a bit of a handful, and it isn't long before the kitten escapes to wreak havoc on the space station. The girls will have to turn Wilnick upside down to find her, but not before causing the whole place to evacuate! Can they save their home before it's too late?
Readers will be over the moon for this rollicking space adventure by debut author Molly Brooks.
About the Author: Molly Brooks is the illustrator of Flying Machines: How the Wright Brothers Soared by Alison Wilgus, and the creator of many comics, which you can see on her website (mollybrooks.com). Her illustrations have appeared in The Village Voice, The Guardian, The Boston Globe, Time Out New York, The Nashville Scene, The Riverfront Times, The Toast, BUST Magazine, ESPN social, Sports Illustrated online, and others. She spends her spare time watching vintage buddy cop shows and making comics about knitting, hockey, and/or feelings. Molly lives and works in Brooklyn.
October 29th - John August Arlo Finch Series AVAILABLE
About the Book: Screenwriter and longtime Tim Burton collaborator August ("The Corpse Bride, Frankenweenie") debuts a new fantasy adventure trilogy about a 12-year-old boy who joins a special scout team to learn how to survive in both the wilds of the forest and the magical world that lies within it.
About the Author: John August is a screenwriter whose credits include Big Fish, Charlie's Angels, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride, and Frankenweenie. He is also the creator of the Writer Emergency Pack, an educational storytelling school distributed to more than two thousand classrooms worldwide. Born and raised in Boulder, Colorado, John now lives in Los Angeles with his family.
October (date TBD) – Alison McGhee Dear Sister AVAILABLE
About the Book: Brother chronicles life with his frequently-annoying Sister, from the time she is born until she is ten and he leaves for college, through a series of letters and drawings.
About the Author: Alison McGhee is the New York Times bestselling author of Someday, as well as Maybe a Fox, Firefly Hollow, Little Boy, So Many Days, Star Bright, A Very Brave Witch, and the Bink and Gollie books. Her other children's books include All Rivers Flow to the Sea, Countdown to Kindergarten, and Snap. She lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and Laguna Beach, California. You can visit her at AlisonMcGhee.com.
About the Illustrator: Joe Bluhm is an Academy Award-winning artist who worked with William Joyce on The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. He's also a character designer, animator, and recovering theme park caricaturist. He lives in Louisiana with his wife. Visit him at JoeBluhm.Blogspot.com.
TBD – Kelly Jensen (Don’t) Call Me Crazy
About the Book: What does it mean to be crazy? Is using the word crazy offensive? What happens when such a label gets attached to your everyday experiences?
In order to understand mental health, we need to talk openly about it. Because there's no single definition of crazy, there's no single experience that embodies it, and the word itself means different things--wild? extreme? disturbed? passionate?--to different people.
(Don't) Call Me Crazy is a conversation starter and guide to better understanding how our mental health affects us every day. Thirty-three writers, athletes, and artists offer essays, lists, comics, and illustrations that explore their personal experiences with mental illness, how we do and do not talk about mental health, help for better understanding how every person's brain is wired differently, and what, exactly, might make someone crazy.
If you've ever struggled with your mental health, or know someone who has, come on in, turn the pages, and let's get talking.
About the Author: Kelly Jensen is a former librarian-turned-editor for Book Riot and Stacked. She's the author of It Happens: A Guide to Contemporary Realistic Fiction for the YA Reader. She loves black licorice and debating genre. Follow her on Twitter: @veronikellymars.
About the Presentation: Kelly is fantastic in front of a crowd, but mental health can be a tough topic. If there's enough interest, we'll collaborate with Kelly and the school to be sure we're setting up an event that will be approachable for teens and their teachers. This would likely be an in-conversation event.
Flexible Dates – Leah Gilbert A Couch For Llama
About the Book: The Lago family really loves their couch, but all good things come to an end, and the family must replace it. As they drive home with their brand-new couch, it falls off their car and into a fieldEwhere a llama adopts it. Can the family get its furniture back "and" keep llama happy?
About the Author: Leah grew up just blocks from Lake Michigan in a small Wisconsin town, with a deep love of art, books, and The Lake. After earning her bachelor's degree in illustration and graphic design, she moved to Colorado where she has worked as an illustrator and designer at a greeting card company for the past ten years. She currently lives in the Denver area with her husband and a fluffy puppy, and still has a deep love of art, books, and The Lake... and the mountains, too.
Flexible Dates – Lija Fisher The Cryptid Catcher
About the Book: After Clivo Wren’s archaeologist father dies mysteriously, the newly orphaned thirteen-year-old finds out the truth: his dad was no archaeologist. He was actually a cryptid catcher, known for finding elusive beasts like the bloodsucking chupacabra. His goal: discover the one extraordinary cryptid whose blood grants immortality—before the knowledge falls into the wrong hands.
The mission remains unfinished, and now there’s only one person who can take the renowned cryptid catcher’s place: Clivo. He may not know the first thing about monster hunting, but he’s willing to give it a try—because anything beats staying home with his salsa-crazy aunt and her neurotic cats.
About the Author: Lija Fisher was born in Istanbul, Turkey and raised at the foot of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. She graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder, with a BFA in Performance Studies and has performed in regional theatres across New York, Florida, Alaska and Colorado. In 2017 she was a Writer in Residence with Aspen Words. Lija has lived in London, LA and NYC but now calls Colorado home. The Cryptid Catcher is her first novel.