Friday, 18 July 2014
So this is it. The last post I going to write about YALC which was now almost one whole week ago. It’s very weird to think that tomorrow morning I’m not going to have to wake up at the ungodly hour of 7am (Positively late compared to some of the times people got up at in order to catch their trains last week). I am really looking forward to having a lie-in for the first time in nearly a fortnight. Although I can’t sleep the day away as I am starting my volunteer work at my local Library for the Summer Reading Challenge. May talk about that a bit later in the summer.
Anyways! Sunday at YALC – as you will know from my Fringe& Blogger Brunch post yesterday Jess and I got in the convention centre early to attend the Brunch and as the first thing we planned to do was get our copies of Half Bad signed by Sally Green we had a good chunk of time to kill before we needed to join a queue (god I love queuing – it’s so British :P).
So we ambled around the merch tables while it was quiet to snag some more of the adorable vinyl figures & bobbleheads – I got a Black Widow bobblehead because she is a *BOSS* and I love her to bits, as well as a Hodor figure for le Boyf because… Hodor.
Eventually we felt it was time to head back to the Book Zone to get a good spot in line for Sally Green so that we wouldn’t end up being too late to the I’m too Sexy for this Book Panel not long afterwards. Due to a very lucky coincidence Jess and I had our awesome Queue Buddy Charlotte join us for more chats while we waited, along with a fly-by visit from Lucy in her OITNB cosplay.
Once the signing started the queue moved pretty quickly and before you knew it I was stood in front of Sally, my brain suddenly devoid of all memory of what the hell happened in Half Bad and she asked me what I thought was going to happen in Half Wild. *blushes* This is the curse of my insane reading speed – I remember some books really well and others despite loving them drop out of my head as fast as I finish them.
Afterwards we dashed over to the panel area to grab seats for possibly the most entertaining panel of the entire weekend. I’m sure most people have already heard about the most infamous comments from the panellists so I won’t reiterate them all here. I particularly liked Cat Clarke telling us how if she could go on a date with any fictional character she’d want to go on a date with Queen Cersei since she had just peed next to Lena Headey in the green room toilets. I think most of the authors at YALC were rather excited at sharing the green room with the various actors and actresses at LFCC.
Following hot on the heels of the panel was the Cat Clarke signing so we motored over to *another* queue to wait for her to arrive. Enter Queue Buddy Charlotte again to keep us company. I had brought my copy of a Kiss in the Dark for Cat to sign, which I finished recently and really enjoyed. Out of Cat’s four books the only one I've still not read is Torn so will have to sort that out soon. I have dug through my old posts to find my review of Entangled which I loved back in 2010, of her third book I told Cat “Undone undid me.” I think I will have to do a review of Kiss the Dark real soon…
We were meant to attend the Sisters Doing it for Themselves panel but as we hadn't actually had a proper meal on Saturday we decided to go and buy some food and sit down for a while instead. There followed nomming of delicious paninis and slouching on sofas up in the seating area upstairs. It was nice to just space out for a little bit after so many hours of intense alertness on bookish things.
Rested and fed we toddled back downstairs with the intent of joining the queue for Sarra Manning's signing and found it remarkably shorter than expected for an author who has been around for so long. But this was more to our benefit as it meant we didn't have to wait long. During this time I had a bit of surprise when Stevie from SableCaught wandered over for a chat in an awesome wig that looked like it came from unicorns. I had waved a rather manic hello at Stevie the previous morning since I chickened out of actually trying to speak to her when I saw her at the Divergent premiere in March, so it was very lovely to speak to her.
Sarra Manning was fab and when she snuck two books over to Jess from under the table I think my bestie was speechless for a moment or two. She has loved Sarra's books since she was 13 so I think that was one of the things that made her day. I am comparatively a Manning Newb having only read Adorkable - which I loved - so I really enjoyed seeing Jess have that moment with one of her favourite authors.
Once we had seen Sarra we wandered round to the next row of signing tables to catch Tanya Byrne to sign our copies of Heart-Shaped Bruise (mine being newly purchased that day and Jess's her awesome-looking proof copy). I have since read this book and I gotta say - wow - and hopefully will be compiling some more helpful thoughts into a review soon.
I am fairly sure that I got my copy of the Killing Woods signed by Lucy Christopher after that but I didn't get anymore photos after this point so I'm not exactly sure. But I am very intrigued by the sound of her third book which promises to be as unexpected and intriguing as her debut novel Stolen which was a compelling and rather unsettling read.
The day was beginning to wind down and the fatigue was starting to catch up to us but we'd heard from a little birdy in the form of Michelle from Fluttering Butterflies that all the books that had been hanging by ribbons on the book wall were going to be given away around 5 o'clock along with lots of other books, so we decided to loiter around until then.
In the meantime Jess had the rather nifty idea of getting a copy of Matt Haig's Echo Boy for our friend Ellie of Book Addicted Blonde since we had planned to bring her copy of The Humans and Fangirl to get signed over the weekend but due to poor execution of said plan, hadn't managed it. But as you may have noticed by Ellie's tweets earlier this week after I went and gave her the book she rather liked this present :P
Right at the end of the day there was a lull in the book zone where nothing much was happening, I was sat on the floor trying to coax and curse my phone into actually updating twitter in spite of its inability to do so all weekend while Jess was over by the swag table chatting to some bloggy folk. All of a sudden there was a flurry of movement and a queue started forming! The Great Book Giveaway of YALC had begun! By the time Jess beckoned me over I had missed the jump and got ushered back down the line like a naughty queue-cutting gremlin.
I was not lacking in people to chat to though and I got to have a fangirly discussion about my most favouritest (bugger you Blogger I'm using that word) author Tamora Pierce with Stevie who is quite possibly the only other person I know of who has read her books in this country.
When the giveaway got started I was hoping to grab the copy of the Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski that I'd seen hanging from a ribbon - but alas it was long gone when I got there so instead I snagged a copy of the Falconer by Elizabeth May which sounds equally as awesome and since I bought a copy of The Winner's Curse from Waterstones today it all works out perfectly :P
After claiming our books Jess and I decided that we were done and decided to head off to grab some dinner before reclaiming our luggage and going to catch our train home. We had delicious burgers at a place called Byron on Earls Court Road and then got a cab from our hotel to Euston Station. Every time I am in a cab in London I do get awfully worried by the people driving around the city because I am always afeared that none of them actually have a license or know what driving is supposed to look like because dang if none of them have heard of lane discipline *chews hands*.
But we made it to the station alive and in time to buy some drinks before dragging ourselves practically a mile down the platform to get to our carriage (stupid A carriage being right at the front of the train). It was only a short wait until the train left and we were on our way back to Coventry. I tried to cram as much of Heir of Fire into my head while I still could since I had to leave the Kindle with Jess, finished or not.
The return journey was kind of melancholy in the sense that we didn't want it to be over so fast. It had been such a whirlwind of fantastic conversations and meeting new people and authors and had felt so welcoming and warm that I know I'd give anything to go back there every weekend (although preferably in a better air-conditioned space with less of the non-YALC goers) and spend hours interacting with people who share my passion for books, reading and writing.
But alas, the real world called... but at least we can escape into all the new worlds brought home from YALC when we need to get away. I know I will be spending many happy hours getting to know new characters and living their lives alongside them during this summer.
So that is it! Everything I have been able to dredge from my exhausted brain about last weekend. Anything I have neglected to mention is me being a derp and I apologise. Hopefully there will be other non-mahoosive posts coming soon as I attempt to write some GOD-DAMN REVIEWS! And when I have finished work for the summer I am also gonna do my damnedest to start writing again because I still owe Jess scenes! (nag me on Twitter people seriously)
Saturday Write-up is Here
Fringe & Blogger Brunch Write-up is Here
Now I shall be off to bed to sneak a bit of reading in before some much-needed sleep and tomorrow a lie-in! *huzzah*
Looking forward to YALC 2015 already guys.