I was thrilled to receive the invitation from Random House Canada for their Spring 2015 blogger preview. I haven’t attended a blogger event in a while, and I was looking forward to seeing some fellow book bloggers and learning all about the titles to look forward to this Spring.
It wouldn’t be a blogger event without some treats, and true to form, Random House Canada treated us to pizza, pop and bowls of jelly beans. We were also given some book catalogue pages in a folder, which were very handy when it came to noting down titles I wanted to read (most of them!) and I’m sure they’ll come in handy as well when it comes time to write the reviews for my blog. I especially love the Penguin Random House tote that declared “Changing the world, one book at a time.” Great for carrying books home after the event, but also an awesome saying overall, for book lovers.
The Random House team took us through some of the exciting titles in their Spring 2015 catalogue. Below are some of my personal highlights:
China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan
I absolutely loved Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians, and I was thrilled to discover there will be a sequel out this June. I was fortunate enough to grab an ARC from the blogger preview, which I devoured in less than a week. Watch for my glowing review this June, and definitely check this book out for yourself!
In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume
Judy Blume always takes me back to childhood. Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret is one of my favourite books of all time. So I squee’d in delight at the news of a new novel by her, coming this June. In the Unlikely Event is about three generations of families, friends and strangers whose lives are affected by a series of passenger plane crashes in Elizabeth, NJ in the 1950s. ARCs for this title are not available (understandably so!), but Random House Canada generously provided us with copies of Blume’s earlier novel Summer Sisters. Read my review here.
Someone is Watching by Joy Fielding
A private investigator’s life is turned upside down when she is sexually assaulted on the job, in Joy Fielding’s 25th thriller Someone is Watching. It’s described as a fast-paced, intense psychological thriller reminiscent of Rear Window meets The Silent Wife, and indeed this one’s a page turner. Quite a few too many subplots, in my opinion, but it’s a great way to spend a weekend. Watch for my review later this month.
The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
I’m a huge Kazuo Ishiguro fan, so I was thrilled to see he’d written a new novel. The Buried Giant follows the tale of elderly couple Axl and Beatrice whose set off to find their son, across lands where a mist has removed the memories of all who live there. It’s a story about the power of remembering, and the consequences of memories we may regret recovering. A tale with the air of an Arthurian legend, The Buried Giant enchanted me without quite transporting me as much as I’d hoped, but it’s still definitely a must read for Ishiguro fans. On sale now; watch for my review later this month.
Boo by Neil Smith
According to one Random House staffer, if Lord of the Flies and The Lovely Bones had a baby, it would be Neil Smith’s Boo. When 13 year old Boo Dalrymple is killed, he finds himself in “Town,” an afterlife exclusively for thirteen year olds. As he adjusts to his afterlife, another boy from his hometown, Johnny, appears, also killed by the same school shooter. I’m fascinated by the character of Boo, and by Smith’s depiction of the afterlife. The mention of a school shooter adds a dark touch to what appears to be a pretty awesome version of heaven, and I can’t wait to see how it all ties together.
Free Days with George by Colin Campbell
Free Days with George is touted as a heartwarming true story about a rescue dog who helps his new owner rediscover love and happiness, Marley and Me meets Tuesdays with Morrie and The Art of Racing in the Rain. A fellow blogger asked the question I immediately thought but was too afraid to ask, and fellow dog lovers can relax: the dog does not die. Instead, George the Newfoundland Landseer learns how to surf! I’m really excited about this one, and am keeping my fingers crossed for a book launch event where the dog will be here in Toronto. On-sale this May.
A Robot in the Garden by Deborah Install
On Deborah Install’s charming A Robot in the Garden, a Random House staffer said, “Everything good in the world is in this book.” She said it had a Pixar vibe, and a blogger quipped, “It’s like if Up and Wall-E had a baby.” Indeed there’s a very whimsical feel to this novel, about a 34 year old man who finds a robot in his garden and embarks on a trip around the world to find out where it came from and return it home. On-sale this August.
Deceptions (Cainsville Series #3) by Kelley Armstrong
I loved the first book in Kelley Armstrong’s Cainsville Series, and while I have yet to check out the second, I am also eagerly awaiting the continuation of the series with Book 3 this August. Heads up to the many Kelley Armstrong fans out there, as well keep an eye out for new YA standalone novel The Masked Truth, coming this October.
Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
Finally, I loved Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic series, and am eagerly anticipating her first YA novel Finding Audrey, about a fourteen year old girl with anxiety disorder who finds connection with her brother’s gaming teammate.
The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks by Sam Maggs
While Random House Canada didn’t specifically cover this title in the preview, they included some copies of it on the cart of books after the event, which they invited us bloggers to help ourselves to some of the titles. I saw this and immediately dove for a copy, because my sister had been fangirling about it for months, and I knew she really, really wanted to read it. So on behalf of my sister, thank you, Random House Canada! This will be on sale in May; watch for my review closer to publication date.
Even More to Come…
As if that weren’t enough bookish goodness, Random House Canada also presented a sneak preview of their Fall 2015 titles. I’m personally super geekily excited about the new Margaret Atwood novel The Heart Goes Last!
Thanks to Random House Canada for the invitation to this event!