It is not often that Jessica and I can say, “Come for half the cast of The Sound of Music, and stay for us.” But today we can: We will be on a panel (and doing signings) at the L.A. Times Festival of Books later this month, on the very same day that three faux-Von Trapps AND JULIE f’ing ANDREWS are also making appearances. I KNOW. We are totally going to peek in on those.

First, our signing and panel (and giveaway!) details:

  • We’ll be on the YA stage on Sunday, April 22, at 1:30 p.m., alongside National Book Award finalist Deb Caletti and our imprint-mate Joanna Phibin. (You can watch me try really hard not to tell her that her father Regis was at my college graduation and that I love him.)  The good people at the festival tell us you don’t need to reserve tickets for our panel (it will be outdoor seating, so just show up), but you should tweet them at @latimesfob if you want to know more specific details, or ask us and we will find the answers. Sadly, we have the misfortune of being scheduled opposite Betty White, but hey, maybe we’ll get a lot of overflow traffic from that. Octogenarians are, after all, YAs at heart.
  • We will also be doing two signings: One at 11 a.m., location TBD, and then one again immediately after the panel. So bring or buy a copy of Spoiled and we’ll scribble sweet nothings — or strange somethings — in it for you.
  • AND FINALLY: We will hand ARCs of our follow-up novel, Messy, to the first three people at each signing. That’s a total of six. See? I AM using math at work! (Also: if you haven’t entered to win an ARC, the contest ends THURSDAY, so get to it.)

As for the Von Trapps, at noon — right when our first signing ends, conveniently — the actors who played Kurt, Louisa, and Gretl are discussing their memories of The Sound of Music at the Etc. Stage, and Julie Andrews is on the Target Children’s Stage at 12:55 p.m. to talk about her latest book. But… I mean, she’ll BE there, at the festival, presumably with time to spare. Don’t you think she could conceivably swing by on the sly and then pop out from behind a curtain and say, “KURT! That’s the one I forgot! God bless Kurt”? I would faint. Actually, I will faint if she shows up in the author green room. If she goes to that panel I will just applaud while shoveling a sandwich into my mouth.

I wish you could all come to the Festival of Books, but we sincerely hope those of you who are local will consider coming by — to say hi to us, yes, but also to bask in the literary awesomeness of it all. Books are the best. Live it.  The complete schedule is here. We’ll let you know more about where to find us for the first signing as soon as we know, and we can’t wait to see you there!