All tagged Travel

ATX Fest: Thoughts & More

Last month, my husband and I headed down to Austin, Texas for a vacation and ATX Fest. In case you haven't heard of the festival, it focuses on television, with panels, reunions and other events about television past and present. This was the final year they were incorporating Friday Night Lights into the festival, and so I thought this was the year to go.

I wanted to share a bit about the fest, the good and bad, and the whole experience, even though I'm a bit late in doing so. 

ATX Fest: Day #1

When Bad Marketing Happens to Good Books: Just One Year by Gayle Forman

 Sometimes the wind blows you places you weren't expecting: sometimes it blows you away from those places, too.

When I found an early copy of Just One Year on the shelf at University Bookstore in Seattle last week, I could not have been more thrilled. The sequel to Just One Day (which I loved) was hands-down one of my my anticipated novels of the season. I couldn't wait to see where Allyson and Willem's story went, since Just One Year promised to "pick up where Just One Day ended.


Except that's a lie. Just One Year doesn't pick up where Just One Day, the book, ended. Instead, it begins as just one day, the day Allyson and Willem spent together, ends. If you've read Just One Day, you know that it spans the year following that day, so Just One Year effectively hits rewind on the timeline for the thing that happens on the final page of Just One Day.

It's important to understand that how the Just One Year has been marketed and the actual story between the covers are two entirely different things.

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Editor’s Note: Today we’re thrilled to welcome our newest contributor to Clear Eyes, Full Shelves, Rebeca. She’s joining us as our Official Romance Correspondent, and you may remember her from the Book Matchmaker feature a few months ago. We’ll be posting a little introduction soon, but in the meantime, welcome to CEFS, Rebeca!

Flirting in Italian by Lauren HendersonDo Italian boys really drive purple Vespas? Do I really need to answer that?

Can one book simultaneously be a Gothic mystery, a contemporary YA novel and travel writing?

Lauren Henderson has tackled this interesting mash-up with Flirting in Italian.

Violet, the protagonist, has recently graduated from secondary school and aims to attend Cambridge in the fall. Her plans do not include a mysterious painting, a trip to Italy or a brooding prince. (Bad planning on her part, in my opinion.)

Luckily for both Violet and readers, her life takes a sharp turn for the more adventurous.

While preparing for her art history A-level, Violet stumbles across a painting in a museum that could be her mirror image, circa 1790. This would be remarkable enough, but she has long wondered over her lack of resemblance to either branch of her family. The painting lures her to Italy and the secrets that await her there.

Henderson does a good job establishing a tense, mysterious atmosphere in which the somewhat improbable plot makes more sense.

The heavy oak kitchen door at the far end of the long room swings open with such force that it slams against the wall. Sunshine floods in, and I realize how dark it was in here, how little natural light this kitchen has. A figure’s silhouetted against the brightness outside, tall and lean, and in the next moment it tears toward us threateningly, footsteps ringing loudly on the stone flags.

Just don’t hold your breath for all the answers as this is only the first book in a series.