The awesome craziness that is BEA

Posted 1 June, 2015 | Mary @ TheBookSwarm | Review | 20 Comments

You might have noticed that I haven’t been around this past week and that would be because I was in The Big City (NYC) at Book Expo America. This was my fourth time at the crazy awesomeness (or awesome craziness…both works) that is BEA and, if you’ve never been, it’s hard to explain the weirdness of the entire expo.ย BEA is held in a massive convention center filled with book-loving people. Authors, publishers, publicists, bloggers, librarians, teachers, journalists…a ton of people who love to read, to write and to talk about their favorite books. My IRL people don’t read much (just the odd Jodi Picoult…which makes me incredibly sad) so I’m starved for bookish interaction by the time BEA rolls around.

It’s also a bit of escape from my everyday. I did wind up starting the day with my usual chai tea (yum!), visited Times Square (um…WTF is up with the naked painted ladies in Times Square these days? I don’t want to see that. *covers eyes* Put it away! Some things are better left to the imagination. Seriously. That means you, too, Naked Cowboy.).

A Chai tea in Times Square. And my name is Mary…not Mery (really, Starbucks?).

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A lot of publishers host little gatherings throughout the week. Little, Brown hosted a fantastic brunch for bloggers on the first day, sharing with us their upcoming titles. I love hearing their enthusiasm for each book! Plus, we got to chat with the lovely Jennifer E. Smith, who dropped by, and ask her some questions. Watch out for these awesome titles:


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There are celebrities, both of the author/rock-star variety and the regular TV/movie/music variety. This year’s line-up (at least that I spotted) included Julianne Moore, Christie Brinkley,ย Emeril Lagasse and Raj from The Big Bang Theory (look! I got a shot of him! He’s just a little guy…).

It’s Raj from Big Bang Theory at #BEA15! Also saw Julianna Moore & Newt Gingrich today. #starspotting

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Harper hosted a preview (with a totally awesome reception after! Besides chatting with the incredibly sweet and interesting publicists and editors of the Harper imprints, I got to drink with Stephanie Evanovich and Wendy Corsi Staub, both of whom are just as lovely and entertaining as can be!). I was familiar with the Avon and Voyager titles but not as knowledgeable about the other imprints…and I wound up excited about so many more titles than I imagined I would. (Does this mean I’m broadening my reading horizons? Possibly!)

Of course, there are a zillion fantastic authors doing signings…you really have to plan and schedule yourself so you can see everyone you want (or, at least, *most* of who you want. Those lines get long and start early!).

Woot! Kathy Reichs! #BEA15 #booklove #randompenguin #PenguinRandomHouse

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And my last day in NYC included reading in Bryant Park, coffee and dinner with awesome blogger friends, and napping (Yes, I napped instead of exploring the city. BEA is exhausting! Especially to an introvert like me. Plus, there was no way in hell I was going to brave Book Con. Nope.):

Next year’s BEA is in Chicago (yay! I can stay with the brother!) but they’re changing the date to May 11-13…that’s when our yearbooks usually come it so I don’t know if I’ll be able to attend. *sadface* Good thing is I have a year to figure out how to finagle that particular problem. Until next year, BEA! (Hopefully…)

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20 Responses to “The awesome craziness that is BEA”

  1. I’m so glad you had fun, Mary! And I’m not even jealous… much. Honestly, I’ll make it from Europe one year, I promised myself ages ago. And I see so many awesome books, you lucky you! I wouldn’t know what to read first, it’s such a huge problem. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Maja (The Nocturnal Library) recently posted…LGBT Monday: Baked FreshMy Profile

  2. Thanks for sharing this brilliant recap with us Mary, I hate that I wasn’t able to attend BEA, so I live for posts such as these! I’m glad that you were able to have such a great time!
    Jasprit recently posted…Monthly Recap: MayMy Profile

  3. Maaarrryyyy!!! I missed you so so much – I missed being there and I missed spending time with you! Did you stay in the same hotel like last year? and.. I miss a hug ๐Ÿ™‚

    It seems like you had a blast and I hope you can figure out how to come next year!
    DannyBookworm recently posted…The Leveller by Julia DurangoMy Profile

  4. Oh wow, looks like you had a fab BEA! I’ve had soooo much BEA fomo this year. I was hoping to go, but alas, life intervened. Hopefully next year in Chicago! Enjoy all your fab reads!

  5. Lol, Naked Cowboy! My friend took a picture with him when I visited NY some years ago. I just couldn’t do it.

    I usually go to the ALA but I don’t think I’ll be able to make it this summer, but you’re right, these book conventions wear you out! I totally understand napping instead of sight-seeing. Love all the pictures. Nice to hear you had such a great time, Mary. ๐Ÿ™‚
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