Monday, May 14, 2012

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland

Reader. Brace thyself.

Last week was seriously epic.


Because of this:
Mine mine mine mine....

Last Wednesday night Curt and I went to Longfellow Books in Portland, Maine. It was the first book birthday of Catherynne Valente's book The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland In a Ship of Her Own Making.
Me, hugging my copy a little too tightly.

When Curt and I arrived at the bookstore, I smiled awkwardly at Catherynne, then I ran away to hide in the bathroom. I mean, she is one of my favorite authors. I admire her work so much. She definitely has magic running through her veins. So, I was nervous. And shy.

Finally I emerged from the bathroom and re-introduced myself to her for the third time. The first time was here in 2010 and the second here, in 2011.She totally did remember me (again)!

She is so nice and smart and she was even really patient with a grumpy guy, who peered at her through thick glasses and declared that he didn't "get" fantasy books. Well then, Sir, why are you here??? That's what I wanted to say, but Cat took it in stride. She politely answered the man's awkward questions and revealed that whenever she travels, she researches the myths and legends of wherever she is going. She encouraged him—and everyone—to do the same.

Catherynne read one of my favorite parts of Fairyland #1 in which September takes three baths before entering Pandemonium. I must admit, with some chagrin, that there were two puns I had missed while reading that I thoroughly enjoyed when C.V. read them aloud.

Catherynne Valente at Longfellow Books

While it was really fun to hear Cat read her work, I was a little disappointed that she didn't seem to be reading an excerpt from Fairyland #2.

It doesn't come out until October (sob!).

But then.

Then she announced that she was giving away ONE advanced reader copy of Fairyland #2. She said she'd ask a trivia question based on the excerpt she'd just read.

I think I spontaneously starting drooling right then, I wanted it so very badly. It was nerve wracking because there was one cute little girl there and I knew that if the girl truly wanted the book, then I was not allowed to take it from her.

But to my extreme relief, the girl did not seem to be a Fairyland superfan (yet), so...

I have a strong suspicion that other people in the audience let me win, because I was radiating such desire to have that beautiful purple book in my hands. And also because I was drooling all over myself and they probably took pity on me. But whatever, Reader.

It doesn't matter because I HAZ IT! (There is a lot of caps yelling in this post. I am very excited.)

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland is So. Good. I love it. Really love it. I can't wait to see where September goes next. There are rebellious shadows and familiar faces who are not as familiar as they seem, and there are wild revels and the Vicereine of Coffee and that is all I shall say for now.

Cat wrote an interesting article on her Fairyland sequel for and I recommend you read it here.

I will post a spoiler-free review of the book when I'm done. Wasn't that a fabulous adventure to have on an otherwise drizzly Wednesday night?


  1. You mean you haven't read it five times since last week? What the heck, Jenn.

  2. Haha! Noooo no no no. When I read something I really love, I try to take my time. Anyway, how can you possibly blow through a Cat Valente novel? It's impossible. I have to stop too often to reread my favorite sentences ;)

    1. You're right! I savor every word of her writing.

  3. The audiobook for Fairyland 2 will be done by Cat's close friend SJ Tucker, which is going to be super awesome too!