BookConline 2020

BookCon is an annual convention that celebrates all things literary! Normally paired with its trade event BookExpo, it connects tens of thousands of readers with publishers, authors, and other creators from the book industry. But unfortunately due to the COVID-19 pandemic, BookCon had to migrate to an online format this year on May 30 & 31 but was still filled with amazing panels via Facebook Live streams!

If you’ve never attended one before, BookCon is a great way for fans to engage in conversations about their favorite books and to be directed towards new books as well. The online experience of BookConline was no different as it featured multiple ways to be a part of amazing discussions throughout their 30+ panel schedule on their Facebook page & Facebook group:

Kicking off the event was “The New Age of Heroes” with authors Preeti Chhibber, Nic Stone, Zoraida Cordova, and Nicky Drayden, as they discussed the next generation of heroes found in each of their novels. Many of the panels were highly interactive, as moderators were able to pull questions from the chat, which is a fantastic way for the con to feel more personal than other virtual events.

And though BookCon attendees statistically tend to be more interested in young adult, mystery, sci-fi, thriller and romance, there was surely something for everyone throughout the online convention as they introduced an incredible lineup of authors including bestselling author Judy Blume and Jenny Han (To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,) Holly Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles), and Garth Stein & Matthew Southworth (The Cloven Book One).

One of the most attended panels, and one of our favorites, was the one with rock duo Jack Black & Kyle Gass of Tenacious D. Talking about their graphic novel Post-Apocalypto, Jack Black shared some behind the scenes stories and easter eggs – even saying that you could listen to their album alongside the graphic novel like an audio book! But just as you would expect, their discussion was filled with hilarity and fun content.

And, indeed, much of BookConline was all about the fun! The ability to still enjoy this terrific con while staying socially distanced is such a privilege. And though you can’t partake in the free reading samples and other handouts you’d get like you would in person, BookConline made sure there were still plenty of opportunities to possibly walk (or stay) home with some swag through 68 giveaways! We’re talking about not only digital products but physical books, swag bags, and even an exclusive Riveted by Simon Teen x BookCon deluxe sweepstakes package! (Good luck to all the entrants!)

On top of all of that, viewers got to sit in for something a little different from the average Q&A this weekend: a live reading of “William Shakespeare’s Get Thee Back to the Future” by Ian Doescher! If you’ve seen any of his past works before (William Shakespeare’s Star Wars, or William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Mean Girls), you’ll recognize the genius that is Shakespearian monologue & theatrics! Based on the cult classic film, audiobook narrators Sean Patrick Hopkins (Marty McFly), Sean Kenin (Doc Brown) and Patricia Santomasso (Lorraine) brilliantly performed excerpts from the book based on key scenes of the cult classic film.

So be sure to head to their Facebook page to check out the replays of the 2-day BookConline event as well as additional on-demand programming they’re hoping to put out for those still quarantined! And in the meantime, BookCon has plans to return to the Javits Center for their next show in Spring 2021! For more information, please visit their official website.

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