Saturday, July 20, 2013

Annual ALA Event in Chicago - Bundle Book Giveaway

I know I’m a bit late on this event recap post so my apologies, but I can honestly say that I still don’t think I’ve fully recovered from my trip to the ALA Chicago Convention that myself (Arlene) and Crystal attended at the end of June 2013. I want to start off by saying that I had one of the best times ever and that’s because an epic event occurred… well at least for me. :) I finally… I mean FINALLY got a meet my co-blogger Crystal after FIVE years of virtual book chatting and online fun. I can’t believe how long we’ve known each other and have been interacting with one another, so to finally meet was such an experience I’ll never forget.

Shh I'm (Crystal) sneaking in to say I had a blast with Arlene!  It was definitely the highlight of my trip meeting her for the first time!  I have found it is super hard finding somebody who has the same taste in books as you do and I am so lucky to have met Arlene.  We typically see eye to eye and it was so much fun meeting her in person and gossiping about our favorite books.  I can't wait until our next book adventure!  Okay back to Arlene!

D'awww!! Why thank you, Crystal! :) Okay so back to our adventure... it started off on Friday, June 28th at Chicago O’Hare Airport when a friend of mine and I were waiting at baggage claim for Crystal to land from her flight. We scheduled our landings about 20 minutes apart, so the timing was perfect. When Crystal texted me that she had landed and was on her way, I have to admit, I had butterflies! SQUEE!! I was excited. I really was. :D When Crystal walked up, I swear I feel like we just picked up where our last conversation left off… easy peasy! Whew! :P

Okay I'm (Crystal) sneaking in again lol!  I just have to say I was so nervous too!  When we email each other I have a delete button but when you meet in person you don't have that option lol!  I was so worried I was going to say something crazy and send Arlene running for the hills, but lucky like she said it was easy and we fell right into a comfortable conversation. =)

LOL Crystal! I was sort of bummed you didn't say something crazy or weird. That would have been fun to write about. :P  Anywho.. so when we got to the convention after an hour long cab right in Chicago traffic (talk about a bonding moment!), we barely made it in time to register and attend the Grand Exhibition Opening. Crystal and I were excited to not only enter the convention floor, but interact with some awesome publishers, amazing authors and fantastic bloggers. We were able to enjoy this event with our fellow book friend  Rachel  from The Readers Den, which I’ve had the pleasure to travel with to other book events on many occasions. It was like a BOOK.NERDS.UNITE! celebration - where we walked the convention floor and talked to publishers about current and upcoming book releases.

At this three day event, there were several authors we were excited to meet, including Marie Lu, Holly Black, Tracey Garvis Graves, Simone Elkeles, Sarah Dessen and many more.
Dessen (left), Lu (center top), Black (right), Elkeles (center bottom)
During our weekend adventure, Crystal, Rachel, myself and a fellow book buddy talked endlessly about our current and upcoming book reads. We had a book club night on Saturday where we enjoyed a Mexican dinner in downtown Chicago and talked for over two hours about books.books.books! One thing I just loved to experience was the excitement Crystal and I both shared by waking up very very early to meet and just hang out before the Exhibition opened. We’ve decided to make this an annual event because waiting another five years to meet up again just can’t happen. Such an amazing time that I know I’ll never forget.   

Me either!

While we were at the ALA Convention, we each got some exciting ARCs that were on our book wish list, so let me share that with you. You’ll notice, Crystal likes the paranormal/creepy stuff and I like the romantic reads… it’s all about the romance. So here’s our list: 

Crystal’s Stash 
Cress by Marissa Meyer 
3:59 by Gretchen McNeill 
The Walking Dark by Robin Wasserman 
Thornhill by Kathleen Peacock 
Parasite by Mira Grant 

Arlene’s Stash 
The Vow by Jessica Martinez 
How to Love by Katie Cotugno 
Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles 
The Dream of Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater 
Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish Doller 

I will share that after high hopes of possibly getting my hands on Champion by Marie Lu, I was unsuccessful. :( Apparently there were no ARCs for the book. However, I'm excited to share that I did receive Just One Year by Gayle Formant from one of the lovely Penguin publishers who mailed me the book after the event. Thank you Penguin!! I can't wait to read it next!! Other than that, my trip to Chicago was pure bliss!

But that’s not all!! We were able to bring back a book bundle for our WinterHaven followers. All you have to do is fill out the rafflecopter and let us know what book you’re most looking forward to. Because I'm still paying the price for my trip to Chicago, I have to keep this giveaway open to US residents only to keep my shipping costs down. Good luck!

All the Truth That’s In Me by Julie Berry 
Cold Spell by Jackson Pearce 
Twinmaker by Sean Williams 
Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff
Thornhill by Kathleen Peacock

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Giveaway Policy: No purchase necessary. Must be 18 years of age and older to enter. Must reside in the United States. These ARCs are paperback editions and are not for resale so there is no marketable dollar value. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Winners will be selected after August 17, 2013 randomly by Rafflecopter. Entries will be reviewed for accuracy. WinterHaven Books is not are not liable for lost items shipped/emailed. If the items are not claimed via email within 24 hours of receiving notification the item will be forfeited with no winner or an alternate winner may be selected at blog’s discretion with email verification by August 20, 2013. WinterHaven Books has the right to obtain and publicize the winner's name and likeness. Void where prohibited by law.


  1. Technically it doesn't come out til January, but I can't wait to read No One Else Can Have You.

  2. I am just now reading Scarlett and I know I need Cress but I will just have to wait. Come over and see my STS post: Stacking the Shelves

  3. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea!

  4. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. I have seen so much about this book it's insane.

  5. Between the devil and the deep blue sea!!! Looks amazing.. And this one is already out but Truly, Madly, deadly!

  6. Looks like you had fun! I'm most looking forward to Parasite by Mira Grant. I loved her Newsflesh trilogy and I can't wait to see what she comes up with next :)

  7. I'm looking forward to Asylum and Through the Zombie Glass (book 2 of Alice in Zombieland). Thanks!

  8. Great givaway I am excited and looking forward to 3:59 by Gretchen McNeill I can't wait to get my hand on it!

  9. I am excited for Asylum, though I am not sure if it could be any better than Miss Perigrine's. :)

  10. Truly, madly, deadly, and of course Cress!

  11. Cress! Cinder and Scarlet blew my mind.

  12. This fall I'm most looking forward to the final Mara Dyer book! The second one was definitely creepy.

  13. Thanks for the giveaway. Most looking forward to Allegiant by Roth

  14. Creepy book? Either The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, 3:59, or Parasite by Mira Grant. I love creepy books!! Thanks for the awesome giveaway! :)

  15. 3:59! That's supposed to be creepy right? Usually Gretchen McNeil's are! I can't wait to read that one. Thanks for the giveaway!

    I was sad when I found out there would be no Champion ARCs too, though in a way I am also glad because that means nothing can be spoiled before I read it! lol

  16. The Dollhouse Asylum, 3:59, The Murmurrings, Another Little Piece, and any other creepy one I am in! I love horror stories, and creepy stories. They are my favorite!

  17. Parasite!!!!!

    Thanks for the Giveaway!!

  18. I'm looking forward to 3:59 and Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea.

  19. Coldest Girl In Coldtown looks amazing!!

    ~Veronica Vasquez~