Summer is here and that means…. ROAD TRIP! We traveled 500 miles in less than 5 days for final tour stops, author meet-ups, BFest, and maybe a Disney character or two. Here’s  our YA road trip travelogue.

2016 YA Road Trip Travelogue Vol. 1

Let’s hit the road!

The mysterious I-4 Airstream Trailer sculpture + Carmen’s finger.

Mile Marker 1, Thursday, June 9th- We hit the road heading from Tampa to Book-A- Million in Orlando for the final stop on Maggie Steifvater‘s The Raven King tour!  Not even a severe summer storm could keep us from seeing literary rock star Maggie Stiefvater. Even though this was the last stop, Stifvater was full of energy.  It was worth all 173 miles traveled round trip!

It was standing room only for the last US stop on the Raven King Tour. Luckily Maggie prefers standing on the table to sitting at it so there were no obstructed views.

Maggie Stiefvater stares adoringly at her favorite book bloggers. At least that what  we’d like to think is going on here.


Mile Marker 266, Saturday, June 11th – Back on the road for the Barnes & Nobles’s first ever BFest Teen Book Festival. At B&N locations all across the country there are authors, trivia, events and giveaways. Dressed in our cheeriest of sun dresses (it’s 90 degrees!), we head from Tampa to Barnes & Noble Ocala to see Rick Yancey end his tour for The Fifth Wave trilogy. Yancey gives us the low-down on how his book The Fifth Wave was turned into a Hollywood film, life on set ( The food on set is great!) and possible future projects.

Rick Yancey ends his Fifth Wave Series Tour in Ocala, close to his his hometown. B&N was packed with fans!

“Books are a collaborative art. The writer is working with the reader.” Rick Yancey

We also got to spend the afternoon with fellow book bloggers Tristan and Fallon from Seeing Double in Neverland who hosted the BFest event at the Ocala B&N store. It’s always a treat to meet up with our online friends!

Hello in the real world to fellow book bloggers Tristan and Fallon!

Mile Marker 428 Sunday, June 12th – We’re up before the sun to head back to Orlando to see one of our favorite people, Martha Brockenbaugh. We picked her hauntingly beautiful book The Game of Love and Death for our February book club. Her discussion questions and playlist were such a hit, book club ran over by over an hour! When we heard Martha would be in Florida we were THRILLED she had time to squeeze in a visit.

The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

So where do you take a woman who created one of the most original premises in YA? Polynesian Village at Disney World! We dressed in our Aloha-wear and had breakfast with Lilo & Stitch. There was even a special appearance by Goofy. Martha is just as amazing as her books and we hope to see her again soon.

Here we are with Martha Brockenbrough and our new favorite Disney security guard!

Mile Marker 497, Sunday June 12th –  After a ride on the monorail trip about Disney World we head back to Tampa for the more Bfest fun.  Self-published authors Emily Skinner and Emily Asad, as well as Mike Maihack (Cleopatra in space) presented to a group of teens, who are looking for careers as writers.  The authors each gave an introduction to themselves and their work, then opened up the floor for the burgeoning writers for questions.

As part of a series encouring young writers, Mike Maihack, Emily Asad and Emily Skinner speak to the next generation of authors.

Mike Maihack very graciously signed Cleopatra in Space #2 and #3 for my niece, Veronica.

Mile Marker 508,  Late Sunday afternoon June 12th — After many  interstate miles logged and new friends made, we feast!

A delicious celebratory meal to sate our road-weary selves.


Who wouldn’t want to celebrate any of these books?

We’ll be having many more adventures in YA this summer so keep following us!

~Ann-Eliza & Carmen