by Allyce Amidon, Associate Editor, Foreword Reviews
Arriving at the Jacob Javits Convention Center on Saturday morning, we got our first clue that BookCon was going to be absolute, wonderful, book-loving mayhem: the line to get in stretched as far as the eye could see.
As soon as the doors opened at 9am, our aisle (2900) was completely flooded with readers. Even hours later, the show floor was still so packed it was impossible to casually stroll through it. Many of the BookCon booths were selling copies of their books, some autographed by the authors, for $10-$12. Everyone who stopped by our booth seemed very pleased that we were offering complimentary copies of Foreword Reviews. The result was that we ran through our entire stock (six cases of magazines) by 10:30am.
Most of the attendees seemed to be general readers instead of industry professionals, with an encouragingly high number of teens and young adults who were all excited to be there. Our creative director mentioned, “I hope when my kids get older they’re as excited about books as these kids are.” There was nowhere you could walk in Javits without running into the lines for the BookCon panels, which looped through the entire convention center on multiple floors, with attendees lining up well in advance of the start times.
The BookCon kickoff party and special panel on Friday evening for This is Where I Leave You was packed and thoroughly enjoyable. We were treated to several sneak peeks of the movie juxtaposed with the same passages read aloud by author Jonathan Tropper, with comments from director Shawn Levy and stars Tina Fey and Jason Bateman. Next year, BookCon will be expanded to a two-day event. If this year was any indication, it should be another huge success.
Foreword Reviews is a book trade magazine that reviews books. The magazine is distributed quarterly to 7,500 librarians and booksellers and is also available at most Barnes & Noble newsstands and by subscription. Foreword employs a full time staff of seven, in addition to a handful of freelance editors and nearly one hundred reviewers. The company calls home the third level of a historic building, The Old Cigar Box Factory, located in Downtown Traverse City, overlooking the Boardman River. Learn more at www.forewordreviews.com.