This past weekend was the annual L.A. Times Festival of Books, hosted on the campus of U.C.L.A. This year, book blogger Jen made her way out west to attend, too. Meeting her for the first time made this an even more special event. And both of us got to attend the bash I always look forward to: the yearly book panel with our favorite author, Robert Crais. It's ever growing popularity made this year's panel such a hard ticket to come by.
I was in a Ticketmaster line the previous weekend the very hour the tickets first became available--and even though I was fifth in line, they were sold out by my turn. Criminy!!! And all week, I kept striking out online in my attempts to acquire them, too. I thought we'd have to try our luck in the stand-by line. Luckily, I remembered that this book celebration event always held back some tickets. They disperse them on a first come, first served basis on each of the two days of the festival (starting at 9 AM on Saturday). I was more than fortunate in that my wife let me off the hook from our kid's social schedule (that parents seemly always orbit around) that morning so I could get there early enough to get in the inevitable long line.
And, tickets we did get! Finally (for Jen, her sister, and I). Simply, the panel was the best one ever that I've attended. RC moderated it, as part of the Mystery book panels, in the aptly titled, "Cops & Crooks in California". It consisted of himself, Joseph Wambaugh, Don Winslow, and T. Jefferson Parker. Can't remember all of things that made Jen and I laugh so hard. But, don't wait for me to tell you all about it. Thoughtfully, writer Naomi Johnson linked me to a wonderfully written summary of it all by blogger Obsessions of a Pop Cultured Nerd. And like Naomi, I highly recommend this two-part post as a read: