Tuesday 12 November 2013

Out and About: Holly Black and Sarah Rees Brennan

Last Monday, the 4th, I went up to Foyles after work to meet Holly Black and Sarah Rees Brennan. I jumped at the chance to secure a ticket the second I heard about it - I’ve loved Holly Black’s books for years and with the release of Unspoken and Untold, I’ve started to fall for Sarah Rees Brennan’s as well.

My evening started shakily after I didn’t get out of work on time and nearly missed my trains; thank goodnees for Southern’s crappy service and delays! As I didn’t have a chance to get changed at work cos of all of the running up the hill to the station, I was going to do it on the train. Cue both toilets out of order and a mad rush to get changed without falling over after I changed trains between Clapham Junction and Victoria - that’s around a five minute journey…

I finally arrived, a little bit worked up and flustered, I plopped down in the seat next to Viv from Serendipity Reviews who I never seem to get to have a chat with at events! She’d taken part in a group interview before the even which I sadly couldn’t make and had already met the lovely ladies and had her books signed.

Then Holly and Sarah walked in to resounding applause! Holly began the event by reading from The Coldest Girl in Coldtown and then Sarah let us choose what we wanted a reading from - Unspoken, Untold or Unmade. obviously, we all chose the last one. The extract featured one of my favourite characters in the series rather…distressed… I have to admit that I’m now even more excited to read the final instalment, especially after the ending of Untold!

Next we had a Q&A round where books were up for grabs from the audience members asking the ladies questions. Holly told us that she left Coldtown with a slightly open end as a book she read as a teenager had an ambiguous ending and she was left slightly irritated, but she never forgot it. Holly wanted to create that balance in Coldtown. Sarah basically spent the session telling stories about her, Cassie and Holly’s writing retreats, dancing across the stage, flailing to the floor and enjoying people’s pain her novels cause her readers.

Sarah talked about her inspiration for writing a Gothic novel that reversed the tropes and included a fierce, female journalist. And kissing. And heartbreak. And live burial. She’s quite fixated on live burial.

They answered a few more questions each (which I can’t remember - my memory is shocking!) before we queued for the signing. I met Holly first. We spoke briefly about her Tithe, Valiant and Ironside covers that I have before I went over to Sarah. With Sarah, she told me to ask her anything because she loves spoilers, then she found out that I hate spoilers which naturally led onto a conversation about The Vampire Diaries. We’re both Team Damon, incidentally. It was rather lovely.

As with most London-based book events, I got to see a few lovely blogger friends. Liz, author-to-be (look at her gorgeous cover!) and previously at My Favourite Books; Cait from The Cait Files; Debbie from Snuggling on the Sofa; Cecily from Cecily Loves Books and I caught a brief glimspe of Becky from The Bookette who I didn’t manage to catch before I left, unfortunately. It’s also so, so good to catch up with you guys.

It was a great event so it’s  a shame I had to leave fairly early as I had work the next day. Hopefully I’ll get to chat for longer next time!



  1. I think Sarah Rees Brennan's Lynburn Legacy may be the best thing that ever happened to me, and I've been a fan of Holly Black's for years so I am super jealous!

  2. It sounds like a great event. I've met SRB too and she's lovely, always so funny and crackers!

  3. It sounds like this was a fab event and I need to get my hands on both books - they look brilliant!

  4. Sorry I didn't get to talk to you much! They should set aside time at these events for us all to have a catch up. I really enjoyed the event though- brill write up :-)

  5. Sounds like you had an amazing time. I don't think I've read anything yet by Holly Black but Coldest Girl in Coldtown is definitely on my radar. I've run into Sarah Rees Brennan at another event and I think she's wonderful...


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