Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Anderson's Books YA Author Panel November 21, 2011

I thought I could resist another multi-author panel at Anderson's Books (Naperville, IL) but I'm weak, I admit. A fellow writer and YA fan on twitter reminded me of the event, and well, why not?

Here's the panel list (all writers of Young Adult and children's books):

*realized A.S. King and Jackie Kessler's names are switched in this promo photo

Since there were so many authors, the event was emceed by David Levithan, who wrote Will Grayson, Will Grayson with John Green, and if that doesn't move you, he also co-wrote Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist which was made into a movie with Michael Cera & Kat Dennings (and is arguably one of the best recent teen movies) and if that still doesn't give you context, he is also an editor for The Hunger Games series.


Anyway, David was the perfect host and gave about 5 or 10 minutes to each author to talk about their book and a little bit about writing. I didn't initially recognize Heather Brewer's name, but I sure recognized her book series:

These are everywhere! They're like a mainstay in any section of YA books at Target and big box retailers and I always see them endcapped at bookstores.

Jay Asher (of Thirteen Reasons Why) and Carolyn Mackler talked up the intriguing premise of their book The Future of Us about two teens who log onto AOL in 1996 and end up seeing their Facebook profiles 15 years in the future. Talk about crossover potential! I can see YA fans my age and younger readers liking this concept. I know I'm all over it. Here's an article from about the book.

Jackie Kessler discussed her series about the four horsemen of the apocolypse with a twist; an anorexic girl is convinced to play the role of Hunger in the book by the same name. She said she wanted to explore the theme beyond her original inspiration, which was a side story from an older X-Men series comic with a similar premise, but there was no depth to her backstory.

And then there's Stephanie Perkins, who I've heard so much praise for with Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door. She has such a lively personality, it makes me want to read her books even more.

Jeff Hirsch and Coe Booth I had seen in September at Anderson's YA Lit conference, and A.S. King and C.J. Hill talked about their books as well, which all had very different concepts and styles. It's cool to see the variety of books out there now. It's certainly not all paranormal romance - I don't think a single book discussed at this event fell into that category.

Have you read any books by these authors? Who is your favorite?


  1. That would have been so great! I might just have to stash my pennies to go to something like this in the US sometime :)

  2. I hope you get some author events in Canada! I know I'm lucky to live so close to a bookstore with events like this. There was a mom and her daughter who drove from Iowa on Monday for the event - that's at least 3-4 hour drive depending on where they're from!

  3. that was jackie kessler with the apocalypse books, i think; weirdly, she and a.s. king are misabeled on the panel list from anderson's. it was a great night, tho, and i'm so glad i got to see you!

  4. You're right, Carey. I was going by the photos but the names are mixed up. It was good to see you, too!


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