All posts by juliajoc

About juliajoc

Recent college grad pursuing a career in the publishing industry. Writer and copy editor for The Daily Geekette and creator of The Gothic Library.

Book Riot Live 2016

One of my favorite conventions happened this past weekend, and most of you probably haven’t heard of it. Book Riot Live is a rather small reader convention held annually in New York City. It’s run by the people behind Book Riot—a website for book reviews, podcasts, and online community. Despite its small size and lack of superstar authors, Book Riot Live really impressed me with its welcoming environment, smooth organization, and thoughtful panels.

Jackson Bird moderates while Tara Clancy, Jade Chang, and Negin Farsad talk about using humor in their writing.
Jackson Bird moderates while Tara Clancy, Jade Chang, and Negin Farsad talk about using humor in their writing.

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So What Exactly Does “Banned Book” Mean?

I’m glad you asked! As you may have noticed, this past week, from September 27th to October 3rd, the American Library Association and readers everywhere have been celebrating Banned Books Week. That means we’ve been taking this week to promote the importance of readers having access to all kinds of books and information. Censorship and banning books takes away readers’ rights to choose and think for themselves. But how do books get banned and what does it mean to be “banned”?

banned books 1

Continue reading So What Exactly Does “Banned Book” Mean?

Diverse Discussions at the Brooklyn Book Festival

Before attending the Brooklyn Book Festival this summer, I had never attended a true book festival. The closest thing I could compare this to would be BEA/BookCon—the publishing industry event that I and several other Geekettes have been attending together for the past two years. Of course, there are differences between BookCon and BKBF. Most obviously (and sadly), while the books at BookCon are free, most of the books on display at BKBF must be purchased if you want to get them signed and take them home with you—although I did manage to score a free ARC of a book called Just Visiting by Dahlia Adler. Perhaps a more important difference, though, was in the content of the panels and choice of panelists.


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Download Some Free Feminist Sci-Fi!

Rewire coverAh, three of my favorite words: feminist, sci-fi, and free. What could be better than each of these? All three together, of course! While at the Brooklyn Book Festival last weekend, I heard about this awesome opportunity to score some free e-books.

Nicole Quinn is the author of a new science fiction series called The Gold Stone Girl. The third book in the series, Rewire, is being released today! In celebration of her new release, Quinn is making her first two books available to download for free from Amazon for five days, starting now! Continue reading Download Some Free Feminist Sci-Fi!

Living a Lie–A Review of Michelle Painchaud’s Pretending to Be Erica

Pretending to Be Erica coverYou know when you’re at a party, and someone hands you a free book on your way out the door? No? Well, then you’re going to the wrong parties my friend. Last week, I was given a copy of a brand new debut novel by Michelle Painchaud called Pretending to Be Erica. This YA thriller had me on the edge of my seat for the whole three-and-a-half days it took me to finish it. I don’t read a lot of thrillers but I decided lately to try reading a broader variety of books, and Pretending to Be Erica is definitely a great way to get into the genre. I was captivated by this book’s premise from the very beginning. What would it feel like to live your whole life preparing to be someone else? And how do you spend months pretending to love people you’re only planning to deceive and betray? Continue reading Living a Lie–A Review of Michelle Painchaud’s Pretending to Be Erica

BookCon Discusses Diversity

Last year, BookCon’s initial line-up provoked a serious outcry regarding the lack of diversity in publishing. This movement grew into a grassroots organization called We Need
Diverse Books that has been working endlessly over the past year to promote diversity, especially in children’s books. One year later, it is clear that these efforts have not been in vain. Diversity was a hot topic at both Book Expo America and BookCon this year. The two events featured at least four panels directly addressing diversity between them. Unfortunately, I was only able to make it to one of these: BookCon’s Saturday morning panel, “We Need Diverse Books Presents In Our World and Beyond.” This panel discussed diversity in the abstract and its relation to the genres of science fiction and fantasy. The panel was introduced by VP of outreach for WNDB, Miranda Paul, and speakers included Saga Press editor Joe Monti as well as authors Daniel José Older, Kameron Hurley, Ken Liu, Marieke Nijkamp, and Nnedi Okorafor.  Highlights from the panel are given below:

WNDB logo

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My Steampunk Tour of Barcelona

Traveling is a great way to learn new things. When you go to another part of the world you can have all kinds of new experiences and encounter different perspectives from other cultures. But it can be hard, especially on a whirlwind tour of multiple countries, to get below the surface and really learn something about the place you are visiting beyond the cut-and-paste speeches of a typical tour guide. Luckily, this past spring while I was traveling Europe, I was fortunate enough to have my own personalized tour of Barcelona, Spain—and I have the steampunk community to thank for that!

My outside Barcelona's steampunk and lolita boutique Madame Chocolat
Me outside Barcelona’s steampunk and Lolita boutique, Madame Chocolat

Continue reading My Steampunk Tour of Barcelona

Rowling’s Riddle: Solution and Funniest Fan Attempts

For those of you who are not on Twitter (or for some bizarre reason are not following J.K. Rowling), you may have been wondering why the internet suddenly exploded over our favorite magical author. Is a new Harry Potter book coming out? Have our dreams finally come true?

Not quite. But something almost as good: Around this time last year, J.K. Rowling announced that she would be expanding the Harry Potter universe with a film about Newt Scamander entitled “Fantastical Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Over the past year, Rowling has been working on writing the screenplay for this film, but she’s been rather quiet about it since the original announcement. Until now.

Early Monday morning, Rowling tweeted a cryptic anagram relating to the screenplay. By Tuesday afternoon, industrious fans had solved the riddle. But before the solution was found, fans all over Twitter were sharing their unsuccessful but often hilarious attempts.

Continue reading Rowling’s Riddle: Solution and Funniest Fan Attempts

Vampires All Grown Up! A Review and Interview with Melissa de la Cruz

vampires of manhattan book coverSick of vampire stories set in high school? Wouldn’t a powerful and immortal creature of the night want to do something more interesting with her life than sit in a classroom re-learning algebra for the 50th time? If you’re looking for a more grown-up vampire tale, check out Vampires of Manhattan by Melissa de la Cruz, coming out next Tuesday, September 9th!

You may know Melissa de la Cruz from her Witches of East End novels, or the TV series adapted from them. Or maybe you’ve read her YA series, Blue Bloods. Her latest book, Vampires of Manhattan is the start a new series called The New Blue Bloods Coven, a continuation of the story from Blue Bloods, but set ten years in the future. Vampires of Manhattan is part of the budding genre of New Adult, which is geared toward a slightly older demographic than the usual YA audience. New Adult novels often feature characters in their early to mid-20s, either college-age or young professionals. Vampires of Manhattan delves into the lives of the sexy paranormal elite of New York City. From Oliver Hazard-Perry, the formerly-human head of the Coven, to Mimi Martin, the restless wife of the lord of the underworld, Vampires of Manhattan brings back beloved characters of Blue Bloods in an older and more sophisticated guise.

Continue reading Vampires All Grown Up! A Review and Interview with Melissa de la Cruz

The Booklover’s Guide to Packing for College

Summer is coming to a close, and the excitement of your first year of college is just around the corner. All that stands between you and a year of adventure is packing. Narrowing your clothes and random bric-a-brac down to only the essentials was hard enough, but now you face an even bigger challenge: books. How are you supposed to get all of your precious tomes into your new dorm without airlifting your personal library across the country? And how do you even begin to narrow down which ones to bring?

Not to worry, the Daily Geekette is here with some helpful tips for packing your books up for college!

Continue reading The Booklover’s Guide to Packing for College