Wednesday, July 9, 2014

thrilled to be a hicklebee.

During the same week A Snicker of Magic was officially released, I got to take a trip to California. This trip confirmed three things I suspected:

1. I love Californians. They're dreamy and kind and easy going. And fun.
2. Young readers in California are inspiring. I was invited to a few school visits while I was there, and every group of readers was so attentive and thoughtful and fun. Their questions were so imaginative. I'm so lucky I got to meet them.
3. The KidLit Community in California is inspiring. Booksellers, writers, teachers, librarians, readers - they all band together to share stories they love. It was such a special time for me. I was so lucky to be invited, and I'm so grateful Scholastic decided to send me (and my twang) to meet so many sweet folks.

While I was in sunny California, I got visit the whimsical landmark known as Hicklebee's. 

Hicklebee's, as you probably know, is a magical bookstore. (Here's their home on the web:

Just the fact that they champion books would make them magical. But I didn't know (until I visited) that Hicklebee's is also a museum. You'll find traveling pants signed by Ann Brashares and a cupboard signed by Lynne Reid Banks. Signatures of authors are scribbled all across the walls. Storybook characters are painted above the shelves. Perhaps the coolest moment for me was when I whirled around and saw a poster featuring Walter, a librarian/advocate/actor/amazing individual I met at NCTE last year (on Twitter, you know him as Waltergiant).

"Walter!" I squealed, as if he was actually standing in the room. I think I even reached toward him. Hug reflex, you know? :)

Hicklebee's was magical. I was excited just to go and visit. Crazier still: they'd just received their order of Snicker books, so I got to hang out for a bit and sign stock. Signing books there is such a special memory for me. Even more special: spending time with Valerie and her booksellers. They're wonderful. That day is a sweet Blackberry Sunrise memory, for sure.

Fast forward to now (aka: a few months later). 

I got an email from book wizard/California dreamer Summer Laurie, who informed me that A Snicker of Magic is the Hicklebee's Spring 2014 Book of the Year!


I was still out of my mind with happiness simply because they carried Snicker in that store. I can't believe they made it their Book of the Year. Look at this crazy-amazing list:

I'm shocked that Snicker is now part of that litany of storytelling.


Those are the words Felicity would see swirling and whirling over my head.

Thank you so much, Hicklebee's!

If you're ever in San Jose (or if you're lucky enough to live near there), go by and hug the Hicklebee's for me. Buy lots of books from them. And take some time to meander around and daydream while you're there. It's a perfectly safe and lovely place for daydreaming. Magical, in every way.


  1. NATALIE. You're on the same list as the Book Thief. And Hugo Cabaret :) That's huge!! You're like going down in history or something :)) So happy for you!

  2. That's awesome, Natalie! So many lovely books on that list, and yours definitely deserves to be there. :)