Tag Archives: Cassie Clare

Meeting Cassie Clare: The YA family

I’m a book nerd. Obviously. So what to book nerds do when they find out when they’re going on vacation? They go online and see if any of their favorite authors are going to be there at the same time. At least that’s what I did last summer when I found out I was going to San Diego, and by divine intervention or dumb luck, the author of one of my favorite book series, Cassandra Clare, was going to be in town right in the middle of my vacation.

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Of course I had to go. I made room in my luggage for her most recent publication, City of Lost Souls, and headed west. I somehow convinced my parents to use the rental car and drive me to the “Mysterious Galaxy” bookstore, where a hundred teen girls and tween girls with their mothers packed into the little store. It was the floor or standing room only by the time I arrived.

I knew about Cassie through social media, Tumblr, Twitter and the like, and I am happy to report she is just as sweet and sarcastic as she seems online. She read aloud the “manor scene” from Jace’s point of view, an obvious big hit for those who have read the books. (And if you haven’t, I definitely recommend them if you like YA fantasy.)

She then opened the floor for questions. She talked about her books and what’s coming next for her beloved characters and the Shadowhunter realm in general. She also talked about her personal life, what she likes to read, where she gets her ideas from. These answers held the most interest for me. She said she never reads books in the same genre as what she’s writing, she’ll read something more contemporary, like John Green or a murder mystery. She explained that if she reads something in the same genre she’ll start to worry, “Oh my god, this book has a talking cat, I have a talking cat, I have to kill the cat!” she joked. There are always going to be similarities in books, that’s what makes it a genre, she said.

After her talk, it was time for the signing. We lined up outside in the bookstore in the lovely San Diego dusk and waited. One of the best things about going to nerdy events is that everyone there is a nerd. Some are bigger nerds than others, but everyone, at some level, is a nerd, which means more than likely you’ll have more in common with them than you would the average Joe on the street. In line there was no shortage of talk on Harry Potter, Hunger Games, the Green brothers and nerdfighteria, Doctor Who, Sherlock, the list could go on and on. Name any nerdy fandom you can think of, it was represented there. It’s great to be surrounded by people who love (OK, are obsessed with) the same things you do, without inhibition, and you can just let go and be yourself. I’ve also found people at these kind of events are incredibly nice and courteous, especially compared to say a sporting event. When we’d gone through the line, the girl I had been talking with asked me for my Twitter handle, said “It was so nice to meet you!” and gave me a big hug. We still fangirl together over Twitter occasionally.

Cassie herself was, as I mentioned earlier, lovely. She greeted me when I walked up and asked me where I was from. Her movie was being casted at the time, and they had announced who would be playing Alec earlier that day, so naturally I gushed about how attractive he is. She responded enthusiastically, saying “I met him the other day and I was just like, ‘What’s it like to be so tall and incredibly good-looking?” She also told me she was taking a poll, and asked who my favorite characters were from each series. I replied, “Is it cliche if I say Jace and Will?” She said something to the effect of, Ah, the Herondale boys. Of course not! and told me they were in the lead. She was a sweetheart and posed for a picture with me after she signed my book. It was an overall great experience, and just another reason I love my YA fiction family.

 

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The Mortal Instruments: Trying to stay pessimistic

Harry Potter. The Hunger Games. Eragon. Pride and Prejudice. Twilight. What do all of these books have in common? They’ve all been turned into movies, some with better results than others. One of the most recent young adult fantasy novels optioned for film, and one of my personal favorite book series, is Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones. In case you’re unfamiliar with this novel (if you are you should go read it, and you should become a Cassie Clare fan because she’s awesome), the series centers around a race of humans with angel blood called Shadowhunters who protect the earth from demons. There are of course a million other details and love triangles, but that is the general gist. Clare’s books have been some of my favorites for a few years, but when I heard there was a movie in the works I was a little skeptical. Who could ever be good-looking enough to play Jace, the tragic hero with a broken past and witty sarcasm? And the main character, Clary, who would be able to display not only her innocence but also her independence? I had already been through these stresses recently with the Hunger Games casting, and by allowing my expectations to never fully reach their potential I managed to thoroughly enjoy the movie, and avoided critiquing it too much for the parts that weren’t to my liking, or weren’t there at all. Such are the woes of those who fall in love with a story long before it’s condensed into 2 measly hours.

The cast is beautiful. I will say that much. Here’s a picture if you don’t believe me:
See what I mean? Beautiful. However, beautiful people don’t make a great movie, good actors do, and I have never seen any of them act. But I’ve been seeing pictures of them together on set, in character, and it’s kind of making me excited, something I’m trying to avoid at all costs. Although I realize that no movie will ever be as good as the book, period, there’s something magical about seeing a story you love so much “come to life.” I just don’t like to be disappointed. In my opinion, Mortal Instruments is a story best left to the page, but that doesn’t mean you won’t see me in line next year on August 22 for that midnight premiere.

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