LATFOB: Briefly Noted

I am still very much on Eastern Daylight Time so my capacity at the moment for long-form reporting on the festival is somewhat lacking. Not to mention that the gorgeous weather and West Coast-ness leaves me ill-inclined to fire up the laptop all that much, but still, a few comments:

  • Like last year, the free shuttle to UCLA campus provides one of the best views of how ordinary people react to books and book festivals. And it is a very encouraging sight.
  • The panel went well, and it should be noted that this was Simon Lewis’s very first panel, not to mention his first trip to America. I hope we’ll see him around American cities and crime fiction-related events more in the future. (Also, it was a nice touch when someone held up a Kindle 2 in the middle of the Q&A session.) Denise Hamilton and I reprise this morning at 10:30 PDT with Tom Epperson and Nina Revoyr, talking about cold cases and choosing to write about recent history, after which I should finally get a chance to hit the bookstore booths and see more of the festival proper.
  • The muted atmosphere was probably more evident during Friday night’s Book Prize Awards, moved to the LA Times Building (where they originated almost 3 decades ago), than on the UCLA grounds yesterday.
  • But Jacket Copy’s coverage and the Twitter hashtag is comprehensive and amazing and decidedly not muted, and a way to catch up with all the panels I had to miss. 
  • The Mystery Bookstore also put on a great event yet again right before the Book Prizes, though traffic concerns meant leaving early – and a driving tour of the Sunset Strip.
  • Finally, though it was a close call and a tough decision, congratulations to Michael Koryta for his Mystery/Thriller win.

More soon, though anything resembling a Weekend Update of any stripe will wait until I get back to New York.