On Wednesday I was in Chicago for a signing with Anderson's Books in Downers Grove. The event was in the Tivoli Theater, which I'm told was the second theater in the US to show talking motion pictures. The old theater was beautiful restored by a family who lived upstairs, and it is quite a showplace. 800+ people showed up. We had a guy playing the organ on stage to warm up the crowd. The organ even sank below the stage when he finished. Phantom of the Opera, anyone? Popcorn was available, which brought me back to my days as a teen, volunteering at the local melodrama theater, though fortunately no one threw any popcorn at me or booed. After my talk, the theater showed Abbott & Costello Meets the Mummy while I signed books in the lobby. One girl was so in awe of the theater she said, "I think Annabeth could've designed this place." I agree! Thanks to Kathleen and the rest of the Anderson's staff for a great event.
Now I'm writing from Louisville, where we had a packed event last night at Books A Million. It was my first ever event at a BAM store, and my first visit to Kentucky. We had about 500 folks show up, and as usual, everyone was super polite and patient. I was told some of the kids (who'd had a bit of sugar) were so excited they were literally bouncing up and down for half an hour before meeting me in the signing line. Hope I was worth the wait! Most interesting moment, a daughter of Hades in a Camp Half-Blood t-shirt and a pair of glasses made from pipe cleaners handed me a clothespin and said, "Happy Birthday." Well, sure . . . why not. Those Hades kids have a quirky sense of humor. As for the city itself, Louisville is lush and green, and looks like a fun place to explore. Sorry I won't be here longer.
On the way to the signing last night I got good news from my publicist. The Red Pyramid has debuted at #1 on the New York Times children's list -- thanks to all you readers! -- and Percy Jackson has returned to #1 on the children's series list. Double number ones? I'll take it. Add to that The 39 Clues, which is holding strong on the series list at #5, and I'm well represented! I also did an interview for NPR while in town. It should air on Weekend Edition this weekend.
Now I'm off to Dallas for a signing at the Southlake Barnes & Noble. It's my first appearance in the DFW area in several years, and I'm so glad to be coming back! The Dallas Morning News ran a nice interview with me today. The columnist I spoke with is Tyra Damm, so if you want to check out the Damm article, please do! (Sorry, Percy fans. You know I couldn't resist.)
After the Dallas event, a car is driving me straight home to San Antonio -- a long way, I know, but after being on the road for two weeks, I'd much rather sleep in my own bed at 2:30AM than in another hotel at 10PM. Friday, I'll be at the ever-wonderful BookPeople in Austin, then on Saturday's Barnes & Noble La Cantera in San Antonio. Then I'm done -- phew!
Hope to see some of you Texas magicians and demigods at the events, and thanks to everyone who's made it a great tour. I'm glad you're enjoying the Red Pyramid!