Last night I attended a book reading with New York-based author Mingmei Yip. I first learned of Yip when I stumbled across her second novel, Petals from the Sky (Kensington, 2010). I enjoyed the Hong Kong, Paris, New York, and mainland China setting. In my blog review of this novel, I wrote: Mingmei Yip dished up exactly what I was looking for: a fun, thrilling novel. Her writing is flowery and poetic and rich with humor.
So it was a great honor to meet her last night. She read at an indie bookstore in Chicago in front of a small audience, mostly made up of my family and close friends.
Speaking about her latest novel, Song of the Silk Road (Kensington, 2010), she showed slides of her own trip down China’s famed Silk Road.
Yip read from each of her four novels, including Skeleton Women (Kensington, 2012), which is set in 1930s Shanghai and will be published this June.
I enjoyed speaking to her about writing, Hong Kong, and catching up about people from my alma mater that we know in common. I’d also like to send a huge thank you to the friends and family who joined me for this reading.
As a side note, I’ve attended quite a few book readings and always come away with some lessons about how to hold a successful author event. When we arrived at the bookstore, there was no indication that they would hold an author reading that evening. Even the window display of recent and future readings didn’t indicate an event for Friday night. And there was no sandwich board sign outside the shop advertising it.
I prefer to shop at independent bookstores and certainly bought my fair share of books last night. But when I see missed opportunities like this, I have to scratch my head in wonder.