Author Q&As

 

Did you know that we publish new author interviews every month? laugh

We've had the pleasure of chatting with amazing writers and illustrators across a range of genres, so no matter what you love, we've got a Q&A you're sure to enjoy.

Check out some favorites in the gallery below, or scroll down to browse the full archive.
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TeenBookCon Author Matt Mendez on Representation, Hope, and BARELY MISSING EVERYTHING

Have you heard about the debut YA novel drawing comparisons to Jason Reynolds and Matt de la Peña? It's Barely Missing Everything by Matt Mendez, and it's a stunning portrayal of two Mexican-American families in El Paso, Texas. Using three distinctive narrators, Mendez tackles difficult themes of race and social justice with a sure hand and plenty of heart. It's one of our favorite books of the season, and a must-add for your TBR pile. 

We're thrilled to host Matt at the tenth annual TeenBookCon this weekend, where he'll be joined by 23 other fantastic YA authors. Join us on March 30 at Clear Springs High School—you'll be able to attend panels, connect with authors, get your book signed, and catch a great keynote from Angie Thomas and Laurie Halse Anderson. You can register now... but first, read Matt's exclusive Q&A. Trust us: It will only leave you more excited for the weekend.

TeenBookCon Author Justin A. Reynolds on Writing, Time Travel, and OPPOSITE OF ALWAYS

There's nothing in publishing quite as magical as a perfect debut novel. Not only does it make for great reading, but it so sublimely sets the stage for books to come. The latest debut to make our hearts flutter and our other books jealous? Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds, the time-travelling love story (written by a former NASA intern) that you didn't know you were waiting for. We'll be plain: This pitch-perfect, hilarious, heartfelt novel needs to be at the top of your TBR list. If that's not enough, take the recommendation of folks you already know and love—folks like Angie Thomas, Becky Albertalli, and our very own events coordinator, Cathy Berner. "It's funny and suspenseful—part Groundhog Day, part Love Story... a great story and a great new voice," says Cathy. And she would know—she chaired the nationwide Indies Introuduce committee that selected Opposite of Always as one of the top debut novels for young adults this spring. 

We can't wait for you to meet Justin at the tenth annual TeenBookCon on March 30—he'll be there alongside 23 other wonderful young adult authors and thousands of fans. Tempting though it sounds to time travel straight to the festival, that technology continues to elude us here at the shop. So instead, tide yourself over by checking out our exclusive Q&A with the author. Then take a minute to register for TeenBookCon so you can meet Justin, ask questions, and get your book signed. We'll see you then!

Sabina Khan on TeenBookCon, Creativity, and RUKHSANA ALI

Have you heard about The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan? It's an urgent and powerful debut novel about the LGBTQIA+ community in contemporary Bengali culture that deftly balances heartache and hope. And its titular protagonist is bound to end up on your list of favorite YA characters. Don't just take our word for it, though—Rukhsana landed on the Spring 2019 Kids' Indie Next List, and has been featured on Hypable, Parade, and BookRiot. The book has even drawn praise from some of our other favorite authors, like Sandhya Menon, Samira Ahmed, and Sara Farizan.

We're so excited to welcome Sabina Khan to the tenth annual TeenBookCon on March 30, where she'll be joined by 23 other fantastic authors and thousands of fans from the greater Houston area. Check out our exclusive Q&A at the jump, then hurry up and register for TeenBookCon so you can meet Sabina, get your book signed, and spend a day surrounded by some of the coolest readers and authors around. What could be better than that?

Christian Robinson on Art, Inspiration, and ANOTHER

Christian Robinson's distinctive illustrations are well-known to anyone who's been paying attention to picture books over the last several years. He's the artist behind best-selling favorites like Gaston and Antoinette by Kelly DiPucchio, and Josephine by Patricia Hruby Powell, for which Robinson received a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor. The list goes on—Robinson has worked with Mac Barnett, Cynthia Rylant, and Renee Watson, and has twice teamed up with Matt de la Peña, including for Caldecott Honor Book and winner of the 2016 Newbery Medal Last Stop on Market Street.

Early next month, Robinson will publish his first book as an author-illustrator, Another. It's a beautiful, wordless adventure story, and we can't wait to get it into the hands of emerging readers. Even more exciting? We're hosting Robinson right here in the shop on the book's release day, March 5. Prepare for the event by reading our Q&A, then make plans to join us—we can't wait to see you there.

Bookworm Keynote Speaker David Shannon on Art, Read Alouds, and GROW UP, DAVID!

Photo Credit-Blue TrimarchiDavid Shannon has been a staff and customer favorite here at the shop pretty much since we first got our hands on How Georgie Radbourn Saved Baseball over twenty years ago. As an author or illustrator, he never ceases to amaze—from the Caldecott Honor-winning No, David! to A Bad Case of Stripes, reading a David Shannon book means signing yourself up to be delighted, surprised, and inspired to imagine.

We're so, so excited that David is joining us for the sixth annual Bookworm Festival for emerging readers on February 2, where he'll deliver the morning keynote address. Before joining us at Jersey Village High School to meet David (along with the rest of the stellar Bookworm author lineup), check out our Q&A with the author.

Josie Silver on ONE DAY IN DECEMBER and Love at First Sight

It happens every year. A debut novel comes along, bowls us over, and settles itself right into our hearts. Last year, there was Gail Honeyman; this year, it's Josie Silver. Silver's debut, One Day in December, is already an international bestseller, hailed by The Bookseller as "the novelistic equivalent to Love Actually" and by Kirkus as "an emotional, satisfying read." It's an absolute charmer of a novel, full of warm characters and relatable scenes, but written with the breathless, just-one-more-page pacing of a thriller. In other words, you'll be engrossed—it's the perfect rom-com to curl up with one afternoon this holiday season. Before you put the kettle on and start busting out the Christmas sweaters in anticipation, order your copy—we'll stick it on our holds shelf or ship it right to your door. While you wait, read our lovely Q&A with the author. 

Jasmine Guillory on Characters, Cupcakes, and THE PROPOSAL

Jasmine Guillory is one of the breakout authors of 2018, and we couldn't be more pleased. Her debut, The Wedding Date, was released in January, after picking up endorsements from NPR, Roxane Gay, and scores of independent bookstores across the country (including yours truly). It's not hard to see why—Guillory writes in effervescent prose that's effortlessly readable and a whole lot of fun. She creates lovable, well-drawn characters that immediately feel like old friends. And she writes about food in a way that will have you rushing out to enjoy a three-hour lunch at around 10 AM. 

Join us on Monday, October 29 at 7 PM when we welcome Jasmine to the shop for a discussion and signing of her new book, The Proposal. (Cathy's been dreaming of this day since she first got her hands on an uncorrected proof of The Wedding Date about a year ago.) The book is lovely—it's a sensational semi-sequel to The Wedding Date, and it recently earned a spot on the November Indie Next List, cementing its status as a must-read book this fall. Pre-order your copy—after reading our lovely Q&A with the author.

Journalist, Football Coach, and Novelist Marjorie Herrera Lewis

There's something about Texas and football, isn't there? Stories of the game are woven into the very fabric of our state. Just ask Marjorie Herrera Lewis—she's spent most of her career immersed in football, from covering the Cowboys for a variety of outlets to researching and writing her new novel, When the Men Were Gone. The book is based on the true story of Tylene Wilson. She was the first woman to coach a high school team in the state during a time when most men between 18 and 45 were fighting in World War II. Think of it as Friday Night Lights with a girl-power twist, with the added bonus of a compelling World War II-era backdrop. It's a moving story of courage and history, and the perfect gift for the sports fans or historical fiction buffs in your life.

We can't wait to welcome Marjorie to the shop tomorrow night, October 9, for a discussion and signing. Valerie caught up with Marjorie to ask a few questions before the event—read their illuminating conversation below, then pre-order your copy of When the Men Were Gone. We'll see you tomorrow!

Tweens Read Keynote Speaker Varian Johnson on Building Plots—and Bridges

Texas author Varian Johnson has a gift for plot. His fast-paced, hilarious books shine with tight writing, clever dialogue, and lovable characters—none moreso than his latest novel, The Parker Inheritance, a smart and socially-conscious mystery that's a ton of fun to read. (It also earned enough starred reviews to form a small constellation.)

We can't wait to welcome Varian to our Tweens Read festival on October 13, where he'll deliver the morning keynote address. After that, he'll be joined by over 25 other wonderful authors, including #1 New York Times bestselling author Victoria Schwab, New York Times bestselling author Margaret Peterson Haddix, and National Book Award winner and New York Times bestselling author Jeanne Birdsall. (For the full lineup, click here.) It's going to be a wonderful event, full of author panels and autographs. Check out our Q&A with Varian, then make plans to meet us at South Houston High School for the big day.

Lisa McMann on Action, Empathy, and CLASH OF BEASTS

Nobody's better at balancing heart and suspense than Lisa McMann. Just take a look at her Going Wild trilogy. It's got a hint of Animorphs, a dash of Justice League, and plenty of down-to-earth moments between lovable, relatable characters. The result is a whole lot of fun—we can't wait for the series finale, Clash of Beasts, to come out on October 2. Coincidentally, that's the day we're hosting Lisa here in the shop for a fun event and book signing! 

We recently caught up with Lisa to ask about writing, her influences, and (of course) what's in store for Charlie, Mac, and Maria. Read her responses below, then pre-order your copy of Clash of Beasts. Even if you can't make it to the event, we'll make sure you add a signed, personalized copy to your favorite shelf.

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