Sunday, March 18, 2012

I love a good book event

One of the best parts of moving to the DC area is that so many authors I love make this a stop on their book tours.

(Yes, I know you are thinking really? that's one of the best parts about living in DC? Really?!? I'm a dork, I know this, you know this, move on.)

Even better is when they realize they are just too popular for said event to be crammed into a book store. I've been to a bunch of those held in bookstores in the past three years and really, they rarely work well. The book store staff pushes shelves out of the way, brings out a wobbly platform and the microphone that's occasionally used and barely functions and they set up in the midst of some random section of the store, filling in as may chairs they can into a limited area that inevitably has the worst sight lines ever and blocking a good portion of their stock. It's annoying as an attendee and I'm sure even more annoying for the person coming in trying to buy a cook book that evening, only to find a well known author blocking their way to "Cake Doctor" or "365 more ways to cook chicken."

So of course, when your book debuts at #1 on the New York Times best seller list you realize doing your book singing in the neighborhood B&N just won't do. That's where Sixth & I Synagogue comes into play. It's a functioning synagogue, but also happens to be a great event space. I've been there for three events now - two book signings and a Jack's Mannequin concert. :-)

This book signing was Jodi Picoult's. I've been reading her books for almost a decade now and am a huge fan. This is the third time I've heard her speak and was by far the best. The event was structured as an interview, with Ron Charles, the book editor of the Washington Post conducting an interview with Jodi on stage. He really did his homework and asked her really good questions. Unlike the sterotypical introverted behavior you'd expect from an author, Jodi describes herself as a frustrated actress. She really came alive on the stage and seemed so excited to be about to tell the audience about everything she learned while researching the book.

Each of her books tackle major social issues and she does an impressive amount of research for her topic, whether it be medical, legal or in this case medical and legal and all about wolf packs. Random yes, but quite cool.

I'm only a few pages in to Lone Wolf, so I'll report back on my thoughts when I finish it, but in the mean time, do you read Jodi Picoult? If so, which is your favorite?

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