Most booksellers I know, including myself, started life as book lovers. We love buying and reading books as much, if not more than our customers. For years our version of the pilgrimage to Mecca has been Book Expo. The one time of year booksellers, librarians, publishes and authors all come together to celebrate the written word. Ok more like walk around and collect free galleys of the years upcoming books. Same difference.
This year ReedPOP, the organizers of BookExpoNew York ComicCon, have announced a new event for book lovers, BookCon. BookCon will piggyback on BookExpo at the Javits Center. BookCon replaces the Power Reader Day which BookExpo introduced a couple of years ago to allow the public a day at the convention. BookCon will have its own author events, panels, screenings and signings, including authors like, John Grisham, Amy Poehler, Martin Short, R. L. Stine, Cary Elwes and Stan Lee.
The idea according to the organizers is to get people excited about reading again. To have them interact with authors and publishers in new ways. It’s obvious they’re looking at the success of NYCC and San Diego ComicCon and their ability to engage even the non-comic book reading public by making themselves the events to be at. Both comic cons have grown exponentially in recent years, thanks to comic book related film, fantasy and sci-fi type films and television shows as well as the overall rise in popularity of geek culture generally.
The publishing business could use the shot in the arm this event could provide. It’s not an answer to its woes but it is a clear sign of life. For an event like this, there’s no need to argue ebook vs printed book as everyone there will love books. The form they choose to read them in is up to them, it’s the content that will be king. Tickets are reasonably priced at $30 for adults and $5 for kids. At this time I don’t see much in the way of kid-specific programming but hopefully that will be forthcoming. The best way to keep the book business healthy is to start ’em young!
Jacob Javits Center
655 West 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan, NYC.
Show Floor Hours
Saturday, May 31, 2014 – 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Saturday, May 31, 2014 – 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM