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Thursday, 22 July 2010

Random House Blogger Brunch

I'm sure you have all seen the posts swirling around the Blogosphere about a very exciting event that took place on Saturday 17th at the Random House Offices in Ealing.

I was one of the lucky bloggers who got to go along and I'm writing this post as a huge THANK YOU to the wonderful publicists who gave up their Saturday morning to treat us.

I arrived with my friends Sammee of I Want To Read That, Sarah of Sarah's Reviews and of course my all-event-buddy Caroline of Portrait of a Woman. I was in charge of the directions and much to my amazement I did not get us lost.

When we arrived, we were taken by Lauren B and Kelly T to the board room in the basement of the offices. We each took a seat and were offered drinks and nibblies.

The other bloggers who came along were:
Carly of Writing from the Tub
Lynsey of Narratively Speaking
Lauren J of I Was A Teenage Book Geek
Nayuleska of Nayu's Reading corner - read her post here
Liz of My Favourite Books - read her post here
And... the lovely debut author Kaz Mahoney who is running the Writing Summer Camp which I am taking part in. Her website is here.

Each of the publicists took turns to tell us about their up and coming titles. There was much oohing and ahhing from the bloggers.

After one round of what I like to think of as "Book Intros" we had a chance to mingle and I sneakily hopped, skipped and jumped my way over to a proof copy of Jonathan Stroud's new Bartimaeus The Ring of Soloman. I think I squealed and gave myself away but luckily we were told any book in the room was "up for grabs" so it was okay. And now I am the proud owner of said book and am full to the brim of over-excited glee.

Then we sat back down for more "Book Intros" and even heard some top secret news about titles for 2011. It occurs to me now that Random House have such a wide variety of Young Adult titles. They seem to publish in all genres and of course they publish Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma so in my mind are also very forward-thinking and ground-breaking in their acquistions.
Next up was a tour of the offices, Corinne guided our group around showing us where she works and also where the editoral department is housed. The lovely ladies at Random House also let us have the pick of their shelves and take home any title we wanted from their backlist. They were extraordinarily generous and I'm not quite sure we have earned it yet so I tried to be fairly restrained.

Nayuleska is chatting to Lauren B in front of her desk and her inspiration board.

After our tour, it was back downstairs for a photo opportunity and goodbyes.

From left to right: Rosi (Publicity Assistant), Clare (Publicity Director), Kelly (Press Officer), Corinne (Interim Deputy Publicity Director) and Lauren (Senior Press Officer)

Thank you ladies!!!

There are so many exciting books that Random House have coming out in the next year but I am going to feature the three that I am most excited about.

Firstly, Trash by Andy Mulligan

Summary from Amazon:
Raphael is a dumpsite boy. He spends his days wading through mountains of steaming trash, sifting it, sorting it, breathing it, sleeping next to it. Then one unlucky-lucky day, Raphael's world turns upside down. A small leather bag falls into his hands. It's a bag of clues. It's a bag of hope. It's a bag that will change everything. Soon Raphael and his friends Gardo and Rat are running for their lives. Wanted by the police, it takes all their quick-thinking, fast-talking to stay ahead. As the net tightens, they uncover a dead man's mission to put right a terrible wrong. It's three street-boys against the world...

Release date: 2nd September 2010

Secondly, Noah Barleywater Runs Away by John Boyne

Summary from Amazon:
Noah Barleywater left home in the early morning, before the sun rose, before the dogs woke, before the dew stopped falling on the fields. Eight-year-old Noah's problems seem easier to deal with if he doesn't think about them. So he runs away, taking an untrodden path through the forest. Before long he come across a shop. But this is no ordinary shop. It is a toyshop, full of the most amazing toys, and brimming with the most wonderful magic. And here Noah meets a very unusual toymaker. The toymaker has a story to tell, and it's a story of adventure and wonder and broken promises. He takes Noah on a journey - a journey that will change his life. And it could change yours too.

Release date: 30th September 2010

And last but by no means least! (The cover hasn't been released yet)

The Ring of Soloman by Jonathan Stroud

Summary from Amazon:
Fans of Jonathan Stroud's Bartimaeus books will devour this book - a cracking adventure brimming with magic, intrigue and a treasure trove of characters that the reader can't help but fall for. We find everyone's favourite irascibly insolent djinni serving at the court of King Solomon in 950 BC Jerusalem, where he is causing his customary chaos and must help a girl assassin sent by the Queen of Sheba steal the all-powerful ring of Solomon. The comic relief is perfectly timed, the dialogue sharp and snappy and the fiendishly clever plot perfectly handled with Jonathan's trademark flair and command of language. Thrills, chills and a danger-spiked finale - this is one of the publishing events of the year.

Release date: 14th October 2010

The other books that I took home (all links go to Amazon):
Prisoner of the Inquisition by Theresa Breslin
The Knife That Killed Me by Anthony McGowan
A Note of Madness by Tabitha Suzuma
Heroes of the Valley by Jonathan Stroud
Before I Die by Jenny Downham
Hear the Dead Cry by Charlie Price

Thanks again ladies!

A question for you: Why is it do you think that we were all women? Both bloggers and publicists?
Are men just not into YA?


Ryan Woods said...

Sounds like you had an amazing time! :D

I don't know why more guys aren't into YA. Perhaps they just don't like admitting they read. Haha. :)

StephTheBookworm said...

That is so AWESOME! Sounds like a blast!

Library Mice said...

Sounds great. I'm looking forward to the the new John Boyne, even though I didn't like Boy in Striped Pyjamas. I am a huge fan of Oliver Jeffers' though :0)
Before I Die is good, but be prepared for using a LOT of tissues, very sad :0(

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Oh WOW what fun! I'm so green with envy!

Lauren said...

Fab write up Becky. It's interesting that we're all female. When I told my mum about the event she did actually ask if there were any men there, and although there weren't I did point out that over half the books I brought home were written by male authors. I'm totally not sure what the significance of that is, but it's food for thought!

Sasha said...

Looks like you had a great time! The Noah Barleywater book looks good :) The Sky is Everywhere arrived today! Thank you again so much :)

prophecygirl said...

Thanks for the write-up, Becky. It looks like you had a great day :)

I really love the ladies at RHCB, they're so friendly, and I've known Lauren for years now. I love that she has a picture of David Beckham on her board above her desk! (Does she still have that there?)

Hope you enjoy the new John Boyne and the others you picked up. I'm sure you will! :)

TheBookMogul said...

It looks like you had a really good time!

Hope you enjoy Trash, I'll be looking out for your review.

Becky said...

Ryan, interesting... I wonder if we need more guy-orientated YA in order to get them into it?!

Steph, it was great!

Library Mice, well I think I'll leave Before I Die until I am not feeling so blue. I agree about Oliver Jeffers. His illustrations are beautiful.

Juju, maybe US publishers will start hosting these events in the future?

Lauren, hmmmm... yes my three favourite picks were by male authors. I wonder what this means?!

Sasha, glad TSIE arrived safely. Really hope you enjoy it.

Jenny, yes she still has DB. There was a lot of talk of hunky guys during the "Book Intros". It seems RH authors are all rather dreamy :-)

Kirsty, Trash sounds like a real journey. I can't wait to start it.

Thanks for stopping by everyone.

CarlyB said...

Yaaay it was awesome, wasn't it? Great write up, lovely to see you again!xxx

I Want To Read That said...

Great post and a great day. If only I had been as restrained as you with the books...Oh who am I kidding! I had to make sure the book part wan't a dream when I woke up. So generous of RHCB.

It is very interesting that it was an all female group. I didn't notice that.

Anyway - great to catch up with you again:)

Sarah said...

Great write up Becky :o) It was such a fun day & was lovely to see you again!

Lauren made an interesting point about a lot of the books we all picked up being written by men. Very strange lol.

I agree with Sammee too - it still feels like the day was a dream & I have to check my books just to make sure it really happened :o)

Becky said...

Carly, it was great to see you but I feel we haven't had a propper chance to chat yet. We need to change that next time.

Sammee, oh that is so sweet. All a dream? Wouldn't that have been the worst ending. It does feel rather surreal looking back on it now.

Sarah, great to see you too x

Amy said...

I think I just died of envy...Jonathan Stroud's new Bartimaeus book?! Over here in the US it doesn't come out until November 2nd! D: If you would like, please read and review that particular novel! :D

Becky said...

Amy, I will certainly read and review it. It is great to meet another Jonathan fan! Woo hoo!

Christina/Book Addict said...

Wow! What an amazing opportunity. I am so jealous. Thanks for sharing the pics with us. It looks like it was a great time.