[Book Events] Indigo Teen Summer Preview 2016

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Indigo’s Summer Teen Preview

On March 16, 2016, I was invited to attend Indigo’s Teen Summer Preview Event (re chapters.indigo.ca) — which, in hindsight, if you were a random passerby on the outside looking in, we’d look like a cult following in a kumbaya campfire formation. Or maybe Readers Anonymous (?). Thanks for sharing, I guess.

And if you’re wondering what Indigo is, just imagine if Barnes & Noble, Waterstones, Kinokuniya, or Dymocks hosted an event. Bam.

And as you know, I am terrible at remembering to take photos so I’ll be recapping this event via my super [fail] memory and crediting images taken via the Twitter hashtag #IndigoSummerPreview.


On Campfire Circle’s and Kumbaya

I was fortunate to attend this event since I missed out on their previous focus group last November. Other close buds I attended this event with include: Amanda @ Books, Brains, and Brawn, Jesse @ Books at Dawn, Patty @ Pattycakess20 and many other bloggers I’ve seen in passing. I’m fairly certain more than 95% of those attendance are part the online book community in some capacity. I’m not pictured below but will update if my derpy face turns up somewhere.

This is how we sat (image via IndigoTeen’s Twitter).

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Upon entering the room, every seat also had a bunch of swag on top among others to choose from (which I grabbed the Shadowhunters key chain). Also, you should ignore my horrendous penmanship on my name tag.

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On Discussions and Retrospection

The discussions were open forum and navigated the various genres under the Young Adult umbrella of fiction.

The first stop looked at the “John Green Effect” on the increasing popularity and sophistication of YA fiction in today’s readership. As someone who hasn’t (and doesn’t really care to) read JG, the key point made regards the legitimacy and appeal of teen fiction. (This is not to the fault of JG himself but rather the market.)

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Then we entered “Reality Check” — a catchall for books dealing with real shit. Simon vs The Homosapiens Agenda by Becky AlbertalliAll The Rage written by Courtney Summers, and E.K. Johnston’s Exit, Pursued by a Bear (A Winter’s Tale retelling) was some of the featured books. There was heavy promo for Exit and if it wasn’t enough that Johnston is already one of Amanda’s favourite authors, now I had Indigo reps telling me to read this book too haha.

After a intermission with grub to chow down on, they returned to look at the growing popularity of “Retellings” and the continuing intrigue with “Court Dramas” (to which Evelyn Skye’s The Crown’s Game was on the slide and I am so very excited for it).

There were sprinklings of trivia contests throughout but you best believe your boy knew none of the answers LOL.


On Networking & Cementing Bridges

It was also neat that Simon and Schuster Canada was in attendance. In a nutshell, I got to thank [name redacted], who are marketing reps at S&S Canada for connecting with me at the tail end of last year. Although I don’t think I got my point across, we jokingly laughed at having me write some haphazard letter of recommendation [to their boss] on all the positives they’ve done for the blogging community.

I also had wonderful discussions with members of Indigo’s Team Teen regarding topics like: the inclusive effect of various social media channels as a tool to inform potential customers, the representation of the “human” struggle (re Reality Check) in SF/F genre to weave fluid challenges that aren’t the main focal point of the narrative, and finding stories that teen male readers will enjoy.

On top of that, I was able to drop Patrick Ness’ name in conversation. So that’s a win.


On Hauls and Swag

When the end came the goodies table opened up, it was basically a first-come-first-served race to the table of limited copies — to which I can best describe as a subdued Boxing Day/Black Friday sale. While I did scope out the stock earlier in the night, there weren’t any books I necessarily had to get (re most of them were contemporaries). I just grabbed copies of what was left to spread among close blogger friends who weren’t able to attend.

The only titles I would have wanted was The Serpent King (Jeff Zentner) but even then, I already have multiple copies of that LOL. However, I was stoked to see people pick it up — definitely among my top books so far in 2016 (you can also read my luminous review here). There was also Kiersten White’s And I Darken (if Vlad the Impaler were female) and Colleen Oakes’ Queen of Hearts — but friends got those ones so I’ll be able to borrow them instead (if they can part with it).

Otherwise, I hauled the following:

Dream House (Marzia Bisognin aka Cutie Pie’s Wife on YouTube)
Run (Kody Keplinger)
The Museum of Heartbreak  (Meg Leder)
Two Summers (Aimee Friedman)
The Outliers (Kimberly McCreight)
Unrivaled (Alyson Noel)
Tell Me Three Things (Julie Buxbaum)
The Unexpected Everything (Morgan Matson)

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From what I grabbed, I’m looking forward to reading McCreight’s The Outliers and Noel’s Unrivaled as they seem like the most un-fluffy books of the lot.


Afterthoughts

Either way, I’d like to give thanks to the publishers and Indigo Teen for giving away these beauties and hosting this event. And also to all the participants who showed up and contributed to the discussions!

Also: happy belated birthday, Jesse (he spent his birthday with us at the event).

Are any of the above titles on your TBR lists too?

Cheers,
Joey

connect: afterthoughtAn // twitter  |  anotherafterthought // goodreads

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45 thoughts on “[Book Events] Indigo Teen Summer Preview 2016”

  1. Ugh I’m so excited for The Unexpected Everything! And the cover of The Museum of Heartbreak is on point =) Sounds like you had a good time, I really want to go to one of these book events someday.

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    1. I’d be jelly too if someone got an early copy of an anticipated title! But now I feel like I ought to read it because it’s SO hyped and I haven’t heard much negativity per Matson’s previous stories so that’s convincing me to at least try it out (even if it looks wholly contemporary–like fluff on fluff on fluff).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It looks like you had a lot of fun! I never realized the book trends you mentioned, especially the John Green Effect, but now that it is pointed out, I see at least one of those trends in either books I recently read or books on my TBR. That’s really nice that you got to meet the marketing reps that have helped you! I know one at St. Martin’s Press who I would like to thank. As for your haul, Lillie really liked Tell Me Three Things so that’s awesome that you got it, although it’s not your type of book. I hope you enjoy the books you do read, though.

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    1. Yeah I haven’t watched or read any of JG’s stuff (movies included) so while I could probably visualize the trend, it wasn’t really something I actively thought about — so it was good to get some perspective on the whole thing.

      I’ll definitely give some of these contemporaries a try since I’m hoping to understand (?) them better so it’s good to hear when blogger friends enjoyed a certain title — helps with the choosing haha.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Nice book haul! It sounds like you had a wonderful time discussing books with fellow bloggers. I hope you enjoy reading those books and made some new friends and connections. 🙂

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      1. It’s so unreal for me to know that actual people irl share the same book passion that I have. But it definitely makes it all the sweeter to finally meet them!

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  4. That event sounds like a lot of fun, wish I could go to these kind of things. And what a great book haul! I really want to read The Unexpected Everything, because I’ve loved all of Morgan Matson’s books so far, and Tell Me Three Things sounds quite good, too 🙂

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    1. Do stores in your area ever have any signings? Maybe it’s a demand thing but if you should try to reach out to see if there are avenues for you to get involved with them somehow/someway.

      That’s what everyone’s been telling me per their interest in The Unexpected Everything (particularly her Since You’ve Been Gone was a hit with a lot of bloggers–which obviously reminds me of Kelly Clarkson’s song) so I’m a bit hesitant to try it because of hype and because it’s contemporary haha.

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      1. They don’t, well they do but I have to say, mostly it’s with French authors I’m not interested into, and I doubt there’d be enough demand for an US author to come by, but well…if you never try, you’ll never know, I guess! 🙂
        OH DAMN yes, that book reminded me of Kelly Clarkson’s song, too. I get it, hype is so scary at times, and I’m always scared to get disappointed. But well, you can be pleasantly surprised, too, who knows 🙂

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  5. Wow, this event looks like it was really fun! I don’t think Dymocks does events quite like this…so it was so cool to hear about how Indigo Teen held it! 😀
    I’m also pretty jealous you got a copy of Tell Me Three Things – I’ve heard a lot about it, and it sounds fantastic! 😀

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  6. How interesting! On this day, I also attended a book event part of the annual city teen author festival. It seems like you had a blast. As you would’ve predicted, I went like YEEEEES at Simon Vs being discussed as well as the other books. You guys were on point in Indigo! I’m also happy to hear that people picked up TSK. 🙂

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    1. That’s awesome–I hope you had a swell time as well with the community! If there was a way for me to vomit verbatim the chats that were had re Simon etc., I would. I was 99% about to pick up another copy of TSK just so I could give it away but alas I decided to do the kind thing and let the attendees have at it. IMASAINT.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s so cool that you guys have such events! With the open forum, that’s pretty neat.

    Half of your pile’s been on my radar already:
    + Tell Me Three Things
    + Two Summers
    + The Museum of Heartbreak
    + The Unexpected Everything

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