Bookstravaganza 2013 [@Randomhouseca @Chatelaine]

Book Reviews, Bursting the Bubble, Products and Brands, Toronto Adventures

Yesterday night was Random House of Canada and Chatelaine’s second annual Bookstravaganza! Randy and Cathy (the Directors of Strategic Marketing at Random House) were right, it was bigger and better than ever! Seriously, there had to be over 200 book-loving women (and a few men) seated with excitement at the lovely and glamorous Royal York Fairmont Hotel. I had the pleasure of sitting with a lovely group of women, one of which asked me “Who are you? Not what’s your name or what you do, but WHO ARE YOU?”. You can imagine that I hadn’t necessarily prepped for that question, I attended the event as a blogger and book-lover and hadn’t expected to delve into my heart and soul. Thankfully before I had a chance to answer Cathy Paine and Randy Chan took the stage and the event began.

IMG_4813

We got to hear from some pretty amazing and influential people in the publishing world — Jane Fransisco from Chatelaine, Lynn Henry Publisher of Doubleday, Laurie Grassi Books Editor at Chatelaine, Wayne Johnston author of The Son of A Certain Woman, Mary Swan author of My Ghosts, and more! In between these speeches we watched “Sizzle Reels” telling us which books to expect out for Fall. It looks like my taste for books mimics that of The Editors because my top three books to look out for this Fall just happen to be their picks too!

IMG_4828

Kicking the Sky by Anthony De Sa  (I’ve already read and reviewed this one, already on sale)

Kicking the Sky is told from the perspective of one of these children, Antonio Rebelo, a character first introduced in Barnacle Love. Twelve-year-old Antonio prizes his life of freedom and adventure. He and his best friends, Manny and Ricky, spend their days on their bikes exploring the labyrinth of laneways that link their Portuguese neighborhood to the rest of the city. But as the details of Emanuel’s death expose Toronto’s seedier underbelly, the boys are pulled into an adult world of danger and cruelty, secrets and lies much closer to home.

The Circle by Dave Eggers (On Sale October 8)

When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world’s most powerful internet company, she feels she’s been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links users’ personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency. As Mae tours the open-plan office spaces, the towering glass dining facilities, the cozy dorms for those who spend nights at work, she is thrilled with the company’s modernity and activity. There are parties that last through the night, there are famous musicians playing on the lawn, there are athletic activities and clubs and brunches, and even an aquarium of rare fish retrieved from the Marianas Trench by the CEO. Mae can’t believe her luck, her great fortune to work for the most influential company in the world—even as life beyond the campus grows distant, even as a strange encounter with a colleague leaves her shaken, even as her role at the Circle becomes increasingly public. What begins as the captivating story of one woman’s ambition and idealism soon becomes a heart-racing novel of suspense, raising questions about memory, history, privacy, democracy, and the limits of human knowledge.

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton (Already On Sale)

In 1866, a weary Englishman lands in a gold-mining frontier town on the coast of New Zealand to make his fortune and forever leave behind his family’s shame. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men who have met in secret to investigate what links three crimes that occurred on a single day, events in which each man finds himself implicated in some way: the town’s wealthiest man has vanished. An enormous fortune in pure gold has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. A prostitute is found unconscious on a deserted road. But nothing is quite as it seems. As the men share their stories, what emerges is an intricate web of alliances and betrayals, secrets and lies in which everything is connected and everyone plays a part, whether they know it or not.

PicMonkey Collage

Bookstravaganza is the kind of event you can attend every year and always be amazed by the sheer love that people have for books. It’s the perfect event for the avid reader, the casual reader, or even the one-book-a-year kind of reader. It’s a great way to learn about upcoming books that you may not otherwise hear about. Random House of Canada and Chatelaine put on an amazing event and I cannot wait to get my hands on some of the books coming out this Fall.

There’s nothing better than a book you can get lost in and I think I’ve found a few on the Random House list!

___

Love Always

Vanessa Xo

Bookstravaganza 2013 [@Randomhouseca @Chatelaine]

Book Reviews, Bursting the Bubble, Products and Brands, Toronto Adventures

Yesterday night was Random House of Canada and Chatelaine’s second annual Bookstravaganza! Randy and Cathy (the Directors of Strategic Marketing at Random House) were right, it was bigger and better than ever! Seriously, there had to be over 200 book-loving women (and a few men) seated with excitement at the lovely and glamorous Royal York Fairmont Hotel. I had the pleasure of sitting with a lovely group of women, one of which asked me “Who are you? Not what’s your name or what you do, but WHO ARE YOU?”. You can imagine that I hadn’t necessarily prepped for that question, I attended the event as a blogger and book-lover and hadn’t expected to delve into my heart and soul. Thankfully before I had a chance to answer Cathy Paine and Randy Chan took the stage and the event began.

IMG_4813

We got to hear from some pretty amazing and influential people in the publishing world — Jane Fransisco from Chatelaine, Lynn Henry Publisher of Doubleday, Laurie Grassi Books Editor at Chatelaine, Wayne Johnston author of The Son of A Certain Woman, Mary Swan author of My Ghosts, and more! In between these speeches we watched “Sizzle Reels” telling us which books to expect out for Fall. It looks like my taste for books mimics that of The Editors because my top three books to look out for this Fall just happen to be their picks too!

IMG_4828

Kicking the Sky by Anthony De Sa  (I’ve already read and reviewed this one, already on sale)

Kicking the Sky is told from the perspective of one of these children, Antonio Rebelo, a character first introduced in Barnacle Love. Twelve-year-old Antonio prizes his life of freedom and adventure. He and his best friends, Manny and Ricky, spend their days on their bikes exploring the labyrinth of laneways that link their Portuguese neighborhood to the rest of the city. But as the details of Emanuel’s death expose Toronto’s seedier underbelly, the boys are pulled into an adult world of danger and cruelty, secrets and lies much closer to home.

The Circle by Dave Eggers (On Sale October 8)

When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world’s most powerful internet company, she feels she’s been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links users’ personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency. As Mae tours the open-plan office spaces, the towering glass dining facilities, the cozy dorms for those who spend nights at work, she is thrilled with the company’s modernity and activity. There are parties that last through the night, there are famous musicians playing on the lawn, there are athletic activities and clubs and brunches, and even an aquarium of rare fish retrieved from the Marianas Trench by the CEO. Mae can’t believe her luck, her great fortune to work for the most influential company in the world—even as life beyond the campus grows distant, even as a strange encounter with a colleague leaves her shaken, even as her role at the Circle becomes increasingly public. What begins as the captivating story of one woman’s ambition and idealism soon becomes a heart-racing novel of suspense, raising questions about memory, history, privacy, democracy, and the limits of human knowledge.

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton (Already On Sale)

In 1866, a weary Englishman lands in a gold-mining frontier town on the coast of New Zealand to make his fortune and forever leave behind his family’s shame. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men who have met in secret to investigate what links three crimes that occurred on a single day, events in which each man finds himself implicated in some way: the town’s wealthiest man has vanished. An enormous fortune in pure gold has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. A prostitute is found unconscious on a deserted road. But nothing is quite as it seems. As the men share their stories, what emerges is an intricate web of alliances and betrayals, secrets and lies in which everything is connected and everyone plays a part, whether they know it or not.

PicMonkey Collage

Bookstravaganza is the kind of event you can attend every year and always be amazed by the sheer love that people have for books. It’s the perfect event for the avid reader, the casual reader, or even the one-book-a-year kind of reader. It’s a great way to learn about upcoming books that you may not otherwise hear about. Random House of Canada and Chatelaine put on an amazing event and I cannot wait to get my hands on some of the books coming out this Fall.

There’s nothing better than a book you can get lost in and I think I’ve found a few on the Random House list!

___

Love Always

Vanessa Xo

An Author's Life for me, yo ho, yo ho!

Book Reviews, Just for Fun, Lifestyle/Personal

I’ve had a book in my hand since before I can remember. I’ve read many books and all of them have had some small impact on my life, on the person I’ve become. Funnily enough I haven’t acknowledged the person behind the words, behind the book. I always thought my gratitude could be found in the flip of the last page of their novel. I always thought that was enough. I never made a point to obsess over an author and I learned very early on in my English degree that you should never associate an author with a character or belief in their book (or even as the narrator for that matter). So in order to save myself from putting the author’s face to any character I forgot about them altogether — I rarely looked at an author photo or read their biography. It’s funny to me because as an aspiring novelist/author I know that I would want my readers to know who I am, or at very least acknowledge that there is someone (actually many people) behind the book they’re holding in their hands.

Interning at Random House of Canada has changed all of that. I now realize how many people are involved in getting a book out there. I now know how important publicity, online marketing, and media are in getting a novel onto a bestseller list. I understand the importance in having an editor who believes in you and who can guide your writing into the right direction. I’ve seen how many interviews one author can do in a day, I’ve been there when they are shuffled from store-to-store to sign stock, I’ve been to their launches and felt extremely honoured to be there. Now that I’ve spoken to a few authors of books I’ve actually read, I see how important it is to know these faces, to see these people, to support these people, to watch their interviews, to follow them on twitter — their book, their words, have made a difference in my life.

calvin376_2

Their masterpiece is my inspiration.

Their work is my play, my pleasure, and my escape.

And for that I say thank you to every author of every single book I’ve ever read.

Thank you.

Love Always

Vanessa Xo

An Author’s Life for me, yo ho, yo ho!

Book Reviews, Just for Fun, Lifestyle/Personal

I’ve had a book in my hand since before I can remember. I’ve read many books and all of them have had some small impact on my life, on the person I’ve become. Funnily enough I haven’t acknowledged the person behind the words, behind the book. I always thought my gratitude could be found in the flip of the last page of their novel. I always thought that was enough. I never made a point to obsess over an author and I learned very early on in my English degree that you should never associate an author with a character or belief in their book (or even as the narrator for that matter). So in order to save myself from putting the author’s face to any character I forgot about them altogether — I rarely looked at an author photo or read their biography. It’s funny to me because as an aspiring novelist/author I know that I would want my readers to know who I am, or at very least acknowledge that there is someone (actually many people) behind the book they’re holding in their hands.

Interning at Random House of Canada has changed all of that. I now realize how many people are involved in getting a book out there. I now know how important publicity, online marketing, and media are in getting a novel onto a bestseller list. I understand the importance in having an editor who believes in you and who can guide your writing into the right direction. I’ve seen how many interviews one author can do in a day, I’ve been there when they are shuffled from store-to-store to sign stock, I’ve been to their launches and felt extremely honoured to be there. Now that I’ve spoken to a few authors of books I’ve actually read, I see how important it is to know these faces, to see these people, to support these people, to watch their interviews, to follow them on twitter — their book, their words, have made a difference in my life.

calvin376_2

Their masterpiece is my inspiration.

Their work is my play, my pleasure, and my escape.

And for that I say thank you to every author of every single book I’ve ever read.

Thank you.

Love Always

Vanessa Xo