by Ivor Davis
You risk being swallowed up whole, maybe never to be seen again, if you venture to the annual Book Expo America without a serious game plan.
In May, I headed to Chicago’s McCormick Place to see what the publishing world had wrought—or was about to unleash on the (diminishing, perhaps) book-reading public. It was the first time in twelve years the book event had been held in the Midwest.
Although last year I’d traveled to New York’s Javits Center, even with a master plan, I found that in Chicago, I succumbed all too easily to the blandishments of the army of publishing booths that await the innocent book voyeur. Expo offers lots of free book signings, free bags and catalogues, and well-known scribes happily autographing their works; for example, Jamie Lee Curtis (This Is Me) and music man Kenny Loggins, who has turned his hit song “Footloose” (from the l984 movie) into a book with the same title. Both offerings were for kids, and celebrity signings add up to long lines. Continue reading