“Sold Out!” at BEA16

Had a fantastic time this week at Book Expo America in Chicago! Met lots of amazing librarians, teachers, and bloggers who also happen to love young adult romance! I was there to sign copies of EM & EM, and I have to say, I was slightly terrified that no one would come to the booth to meet me. I mean, there are so many amazing authors in the hall … surely people would have better things to do.

bea16_signingI showed up for my signing with my purple Sharpie and some awesome swag in hand … and I’m happy to say, we had so many folks stop by that we ran out of EM & EM after the first half hour!

bea_crowd Check out this crowd in the hall (no, THAT’S not my line … though that would have been cool!)!

IMG_20160423_214821I brought lots of these fun bookmarks, and they were a big hit. One of the women in line told me I “won BEA” with these. 🙂

 

Awesome Parent/Teen Review of EM & EM!

yourteenmagreviewUPDATE: The reviews are now online on the Your Teen website!

Some exciting news this month: Your Teen for Parents magazine has a parent/teen review of EM & EM in its March/April issue! And even better news: They both loved it!

Here are my favorite lines:

Parent: “I highly recommend this novel to teen girls, though I think it could be important for teen boys as well…. I’m looking forward to reading more from this thoughtful and entertaining new author.”

Teen: “It is full of relatable characters, thrilling plot twists, and enticing storytelling. Emily pulls you into her beautiful yet terrifying world and won’t let you go until the unexpected and mysterious ending.”

I’m hoping the reviews will go up on the Your Teen website  soon so I can add a link and let you read the whole piece. It’s always so much fun to see what other people take away from my stories, and it’s especially great to see a mom/daughter team enjoy the book and explore some of its more serious themes!

Join Me for a Night of Romance!

night_of_romance

Join me and fellow romance novelists Lisa Dyson, Megan Hart, Terri Haynes, and Elisabeth Staab for a Night of Romance, February 12 at 7 p.m. at the Barnes & Noble Potomac Yard in Alexandria, Virginia!

Just in time for Valentine’s, discover your next favorite romance novel. Each of us writes a different genre of romance. Lisa writes contemporary adult, Megan writes erotica, Terri writes African-American Christian, Elisabeth writes New Adult, and I of course will be there with EM & EM representing teen romance. Quite a variety, so it should be interesting!

The event will include Q&A and speed dating with the authors, as well as book sales and signings. Also, we each have been asked to pick our favorite kissing scenes from our novel and do a reading. Oh la la!

There is no cost, and Barnes & Noble is providing refreshments, so if you’re in the area or if you want to treat yourself to a night out in romantic Old Town for Valentine’s weekend, please come by and say hello!

UPDATE: A sixth author has been added! Looking forward to meeting and signing with “sassy romance” author Harper Kincaid as well!

Can We Get Serious for a Minute?

I tend to shine a rosy light on EM & EM and depict it as a sweet romance, and it is that. But it also touches on a very serious subject: date rape.

There is nothing rosy or sweet or romantic about date rape, nor is there anything humorous or festive about it. By now, you’ve probably seen the Bloomingdale’s ad: “Spike your best friend’s eggnog when they’re not looking.”

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Image: Imgur

Unbelievable. Bloomingdale’s? What? How?

Seriously, how did this get through layers of review? Presumably your marketers are respectable, educated business people. They understand certain advertising principles (especially the one about how “sex sells,” apparently). The ad itself is beautiful and sophisticated, so clearly they have an appreciation for clean page composition, font usage, and color. Yet they can’t grasp the simple concept that rape is wrong? Because, news flash: It is. Always. Even when the victim is drinking eggnog.

This week, I attended a book club meeting with a group who had read EM & EM. We talked about the problem of date rape and date rape drugs. One of the women remarked that she knew girls are often advised not to leave their drinks unattended but that often at parties, girls are handed drinks by their friends, and they don’t know exactly what went into them in the first place.

As the Bloomingdale’s ad reminds us, sometimes it may not be advisable to trust these “friends.” Even if they seem like respectable, educated people.

I’m not one to celebrate victimhood. On the contrary, I often rail against the fact that we are becoming a society that perceives persecution and discrimination and offense at every turn. But when an American institution such as Bloomingdale’s errs so blatantly in its judgment on a topic like rape, it’s time to take a step back and try to understand what messages we, and in particular the media, are projecting to teens and young men and women.