Thursday, 2 February 2012

The day I worked on my holiday

Last night I got back home at 1am to be greeted by this....
I can't decide if it is cool or creepy, but what it definitely is, is a perfect example of the weird shiz that I get randomly given by family and friends, although I guess you could argue that people who give me this sort of stuff should not really be considered family or friends.
Anyhoo the reason for me being out so late is also the reason why I worked on my holiday!? Last night I hosted an event with author Patrick Ness and illustrator Jim Kay where they talked about their collaboration on the beautiful A Monster Calls.  Those of you who do not know the story it is the incredibly moving tale of a young boy who is dealing with the death of his mother, who one night is visited by The Monster.
The event was chaired by the wonderful Nicollete Jones who is not only an author in her own right but is also the children's books reviewer for The Times.  Both Patrick and Jim were highly entertaining and kept the audience in rapt attention with perfectly timed humour and intelligent in depth conversation about their ideas and concepts for the novel.
The Evening was a huge success with close to a two hundred attendees, and it was lovely to see children in the audience, as children often ask the most interesting and succinct questions, which is something they did not fail to do.
After the event I was lucky enough to be invited to dine with Patrick and Jim, and it was the perfect end to the evening, giving me a chance to speak with author and illustrator on a personal level.  Having met Patrick several times already he still remains to be as intelligent and erudite as ever.  As for Jim Kay, he is one of the most grounded, gifted, and genuinely, lovely people, I have ever had the pleasure to meet, who judging from the band-aids on nearly every finger, literally bleeds for his art.

And in a bizarre case of coincidence yesterday I finally (after 9 months of being on hold oops) brought my copy of Catherynne M Valente's The girl who circumnavigated fairyland in a ship of her own making only to find out 5 minutes later that those geniuses at Walker books will be releasing the novel in paperback in the UK on the 7th June.  As far as I can tell the book is remaining in it's original format with its illustrations by artist Ana Juan.  Oh yeah and check out Catherynne's blog as well.

I also finally got my copy of Andrew Fukuda's The Hunt which I have been extremely eager to read.  Not only read but see the cover art.  The reason for this is because last year I was chatting to a rep from Simon and Schuster and I was told that they had aquired a new vampire novel that would appeal to boys, and I was asked for suggestions on concept ideas for the cover art.  Needless to say I was overjoyed to help, and it seems a few of my suggestions slipped into the ideas bin (grins like a loon) Wish I could say the choice of cover model was my idea!
For those who don't know the story 17-year-old Gene is surviving against all odd,s in a world where humans have been eaten to near extinction by the general population. The only remaining humans, or hepers as they are known, are housed in domes on the savannah and studied at the nearby Heper Institute. Every decade there is a government sponsored hunt. When Gene is selected to be one of the combatants he must learn the art of the hunt but also elude his fellow competitors whose suspicions about his true nature are growing.
From what I have read of the novel so far (on page 121 already) I am really enjoying it.  It kind of reminds me of I am Legend (one of my all time favourite novels) in a what if the character Robert Neville had tried to survive by coexisting in the vampire society version of the classic, and judging by the literary fans, see the campaign sheet below, and the fact that it is being compared to the Hunger Games, I think it is pretty safe to say that anyone who picks up this novel will enjoy all 293 pages of it.
BTW who is the model? does he look like Chris Hemsworth or what?
Just incase you are interested here is one of the versions of the US cover art. 
The book is released 12th May 2012

As you are all probably aware by now Warm Bodies (for the last time it is not a zombie twilight!!!) has been made into a movie.  Personally I cannot wait to see this movie, and the fact that Nick Hoults character 'R' is actually kept to looking like a hideous virus ridden, flesh hungry living corpse and not been given the prettified treatment and turned into a walking six pack with staples in his face (Beastly) and he is as far removed from the human disco ball that is Edward, hopefully this means that the story will centre on the emotional, and relationship driven horomance that Warm Bodies actually is.  
Here are some pics from the movie.  For some reason I could'nt find any of the awesome Teresa Palmer (girl crush) who plays Julie, but the ones of a zombiefied Nick Hoult 'R' (see what I did there) pretty awesome.
The movie is scheduled for release 24 August 2012

In other none book/movie related news, while I was surfing the WWW the other day I found this amazing pocket watch
It looks like a compass I know, but it is infact a replica of a pocket watch designed in 1580 so it was made with only an hour hand, because back then, as an actual time keeping piece it... well sucked. 
As soon as I saw it I immediately thought of Cassandra Clares Infernal Devices series, and now I want one really bad (geeks out) I will just have to wait until next payday.

Thats all for now guys and ghouls.

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