10 Books to Look Forward to This Year!

10 Books to Read this Year | read more at nyctalon.com

Far off places, daring swordfights, magic spells, a prince in disguise! We’re well into the first month of 2017, and you might be looking to escape into a new book. Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. These new releases, or continuing series, will be sure to get you on your reading game. Fair warning, most of these are YA, as is my preference. For other genres, follow me on Goodreads for some other exciting reads!

The Book Jumper by Mechthild Gläser – January 3rd

The Book Jumper

This fantastical YA fiction story features Amy Lennox who, after moving to Scotland with her mom to stay at the family’s home on Stormsay Island, finds out she is a book jumper. Able to leap into a story and interact with it, Amy’s powers are as dangerous as they are thrilling. When someone starts stealing from the books that Amy visits, she must team up with fellow book jumper Will in order to solve the mystery of the thefts. Available now!

Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book by Jennifer Donnelly – January 31st

When I found out one of my favorite authors, Jennifer Donnelly, was writing this book I was so excited. Then when I saw the cover – well, just look at it! It’s gorgeous. You all know that we loved the Beast not for his baroque-style castle, but for his envy-inducing library. Talk about happily ever after. Here’s that cover:

Beauty and the Beast Lost in a Book

An original addition to the beloved Beauty and the Beast fairy tale, Lost in a Book follows the lonely, bookish Belle as she finds an enchanted book in the Beast’s library called Nevermore that carries her into a glittering new world. There, Belle is befriended by a mysterious countess who offers her the life she’s always dreamed of.

But Nevermore is not what it seems, and the more time Belle spends there, the harder it is to leave. Good stories take hold of us and never let us go, and once Belle becomes lost in this book, she may never find her way out again.

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones – February 7th

Wintersong

Liesl is the innkeeper’s daughter, the secret composer, the girl with magic in her soul. She abandoned fantastic tales of the Goblin King long ago in favor of taking care of her family and helping her brother in his musical studies. But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. I give this book a solid rating – see my review here.

Miranda and Caliban by Jacqueline Carey – February 14th

Miranda and Caliban

Miranda and Caliban is bestselling fantasy author Jacqueline Carey’s exciting retelling of The Tempest. Carey explores the themes of twisted love and unchecked power that lie at the heart of Shakespeare’s masterpiece, while serving up a fresh take on the play’s iconic characters.

Beast: A Tale of Love and Revenge by Lisa Jensen – March 7th

They say that Château Beaumont is cursed, but servant-girl Lucie doesn’t believe it—how could anyone as handsome as Jean-Loup Christian Henri LeNoir, Chevalier de Beaumont and master of the estate, be cursed? She cannot imagine the monster that lurks behind his handsome façade, and after the chevalier reveals his brutal cruelty, Lucie clings to the hope of revenge. She wishes to see Jean-Loup suffer, and a wise woman grants her wish, turning Jean-Loup into a hideous beast and Lucie into a candlestick, sleek and silver and impervious to harm. For months, Lucie casts her enchanted light on Beast and illuminates his grotesqueness…until the night an intruder shows up on their doorstep and changes everything. Filled with magic and fierce emotion, Lisa Jensen’s imaginative retelling transforms a classic into a lyrically written, psychologically complex exploration of good, evil, innocence, and truth that defies expectations.

This story offers a unique twist on the classic Beauty and the Beast story, keep an eye out for reviews!

Hunted by Meagan Spooner – March 17th

Hunted

Beauty and the Beast retellings always have a special place in my heart (see my Uprooted review here), and this year is especially friendly for this type of tale in light of Disney’s much anticipated live-action film. Check out what Goodreads has to say about this promising book:

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas – May 2nd

A Court of Wings and Ruin

This NA (that’s New Adult, for you young’uns) series has captured the hearts of Maas fans everywhere. The third installment of this riveting series picks up with Feyre back in the spring court with Tamlin, and the entire world on the brink of war. Expect to feel all of the feels. All. Of. Them. Also expect to wish for a time machine (a little blue box, perhaps?) that will bring you closer to the release date of this book, because May 2nd is too far away.

The Crown’s Fate by Evelyn Skye – May 16th

The Crown's Fate

If you liked the first installment of this series, The Crown’s Game, then you’re bound to love the second. If not, now’s the time to dive into this historical fantasy. Pick up on May 16th, or pre-order here.

Dark Breaks the Dawn by Sara B. Larson – May 30th

Dark Breaks the Dawn

A princess, magic, a corrupt king, romance, the battle between light and dark. What are you waiting for? Oh yeah, that May 30th release date. Preorder here.

Sparks of Life by Janet B. Taylor – August 1st

Sparks of Life

For the first time in her life, Hope Walton has friends . . . and a (maybe) boyfriend. She’s a Viator, a member of a long line of time-traveling ancestors. When the Viators learn of a plan to steal a dangerous device from the inventor Nikola Tesla, only a race into the past can save the natural timeline from utter destruction. Navigating the glitterati of The Gilded Age in 1895 New York City, Hope and her crew will discover that high society can be as deadly as it is beautiful.

The second addition to this exciting time-traveling series is sure to be a hit! Pre-order here.

What books are you reading this year? Leave your comments (and recommendations!) below.

8 Books on Our Radar for Fall 2016

8-books-to-read-this-fall

The fall is an ideal time to catch up on your reading list and there are so many amazing books coming out these next few months, chances are I will probably post a second fall book list. For now, here are the books that you definitely will want to add to your shelves asap!

Damn Delicious – 100 Super Easy, Super Fast Recipes by Chungah Rhee

damn-delicious-cookbook-by-chungah-rhee

As a hardcore Damn Delicious fan, I have to say I am beyond thrilled that Chungah – the brains behind one of the internet’s most popular food blogs, Damn Delicious – is releasing a book. With her signature mouth-watering photos, the Damn Delicious inaugural cookbook features 240 pages of exclusive new recipes, as well as some of Chungah’s most beloved dishes. Releases on September 6th, pre-order here.

The Pigeon Tunnel: Stories from My Life by John le Carre

the-pigeon-tunnel-by-john-le-carre

The Little Drummer Girl was my first ever le Carre and I’m still obsessed with it. In The Pigeon Tunnel: Stories from My Life, John le Carre gives readers a glimpse into his life – from serving in British Intelligence during the Cold War to meeting with two former heads of the KGB. This first memoir from the noted author is sure to be a thrilling read. Release date: September 6th, pre-order here.

Breaking Breads: A New World of Israeli Baking

breaking-breads-by-uri-scheft

My Breads Bakery obsession has already been well documented here, just look at those pictures and tell me that this cookbook isn’t worth its weight in Nutella babka:

“Israeli baking encompasses the influences of so many regions—Morocco, Yemen, Germany, and Georgia, to name a few—and master baker Uri Scheft seamlessly marries all of these in his incredible baked goods at his Breads Bakery in New York City and Lehamim Bakery in Tel Aviv. Nutella-filled babkas, potato and shakshuka focaccia, and chocolate rugelach are pulled out of the ovens several times an hour for waiting crowds. In Breaking Breads, Scheft takes the combined influences of his Scandinavian heritage, his European pastry training, and his Israeli and New York City homes to provide sweet and savory baking recipes that cover European, Israeli, and Middle Eastern favorites. Scheft sheds new light on classics like challah, babka, and ciabatta—and provides his creative twists on them as well, showing how bakers can do the same at home—and introduces his take on Middle Eastern daily breads like kubaneh and jachnun. The instructions are detailed and the photos explanatory so that anyone can make Scheft’s Poppy Seed Hamantaschen, Cheese Bourekas, and Jerusalem Bagels, among other recipes. With several key dough recipes and hundreds of Israeli-, Middle Eastern–, Eastern European–, Scandinavian-, and Mediterranean-influenced recipes, this is truly a global baking bible.”

Breaking Breads is available for purchase on October 18th, pre-order it here.

Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi

futhermore-by-tahereh-mafi

Bestselling author of the Shatter Me series, Tahereh Mafi’s Furthermore promises to be an equally enthralling read. Futhermore tells the tale of Alexis Queensmeadow, a 12-year-old who must travel through the mythical and dangerous world of Furthermore where “down can be up, paper is alive, and left can be both right and very, very wrong” all to save her father and bring him back to their home in Ferenwood. To be fair, this book released on August 30th, so not technically a fall release, but close enough. Pick it up here.

Gilt Hollow by Lorie Langdon

gilt-hollow-by-lorie-langdon

Lorie Langdon must be a writing machine! Her and Carey Corp’s much-anticipated conclusion to the Doon Series just released this summer and she’s already back with a pivotal YA book just in time for the fall. Gilt Hollow follows Willow Lamott whose best friend Ashton is a murderer, and who also happens to be freshly out of juvie and headed back to the small town of Gilt Hollow. Will Ashton’s desire to clear his name and become the man that Willow sees him destroy everyone he loves? If small town drama, mystery, and suspense is your thing – then you’ll love this book. Pre-order ahead of the September 27th release date here.

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

crooked-kingdom-by-leigh-bardugo

The second addition to the Six of Crows series, Crooked Kingdom promises to be a dark continuation of an already dark and thrilling story. Readers of Six of Crows are dying to know what will happen to Kaz and the crew, if you haven’t read the first one – it’s been generally likened to a fantastic and dark YA version of Oceans 11, so if you’re into heists, planning, with a little mystery and a load of magic thrown in you will love this series. I definitely recommend getting them in hardcover, the book design is amazing and certainly deserves a spot on your shelf, releases on September 27th.

The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer

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The queen of YA herself, Stephenie Meyer is releasing a new novel. The Chemist, her first thriller but second adult novel, is about an ex-agent on the run from her former employers. She must take one last case to clear her name, of course this one last case will probably involve very deadly circumstances. Sounds very Jason Bourne, and very promising – we still have a while to wait yet, it’s expected to release on November 15th. Pre-order on amazon here.

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

heartless-by-marissa-meyer

Author of the extremely popular Lunar Chronicles series (seriously, do these authors never sleep?), Marissa Meyer brings readers an exciting tale of none other than the Queen of Hearts. We know her as the terror of Wonderland. In Heartless Meyer brings us the girl before monster, Catherine, who wants to open a bakery with her best friend and fall in love on her own terms. But this is the Kingdom of Hearts and fate has other plans. Intrigued? So am I, pre-order this tale ahead of its November 8th release date here.

There are so many other amazing books to look out for – what are you reading this fall? Did you read anything amazing over the summer? Let me know!

8 Books to Read this Summer

I almost threw the towel in on this list. Not because there weren’t enough books that I felt worthy of recommendation, but because there is possibly even too many books out there that would make for perfect summer reads! But somehow I muddled through and narrowed it to eight. This list is comprised of my ideal kind of lazy summer day book, yours may of course differ – so feel free to drop your book recommendations in the comments below. Also, join me here on goodreads for more book reviews and to keep track of your favorite reads!

8 Books to Read This Summer NYC Talon

Remnant Chronicles: The Beauty of Darkness

The Beauty of Darkness

The Beauty of Darkness is the third and final book of The Remnant Chronicles series by Mary E. Pearson and it is not to be missed! Full of intrigue, romance, suspense, and action – this YA series featuring the ultimate heroine and a thoroughly engaging story-line will keep you glued to the page. This last installment releases on August 2nd, so you’re sure to have a great book to finish summer vacation with. Preorder here.

Shining Sea

The Shining Sea by Mimi Cross

Looking for a quick fantasy read with some Twilight undertones? Shining Sea by Mimi Cross definitely deserves its spot among beach reads with its mix of mystery, fantasy, and family drama. Here’s the goodreads synopsis:

“Seventeen-year-old Arion Rush has always played the obedient sidekick to her older sister’s flashy femme fatale—until a mysterious boating accident leaves Lilah a silent, traumatized stranger. As her sister awaits medical treatment with their mother, Arion and her father head to his hometown in Maine to prepare a new life for them all. Surrounded by the vast Atlantic, she finds solace in songwriting, her only solid ground.

Unexpectedly, Arion blossoms in the tiny coastal town. Friends flock to her, and Logan Delaine, a volatile heartthrob, seems downright smitten. But it’s Bo Summers—a solitary surfer, as alluring as he is aloof—that Arion can’t shake. Meanwhile, Lilah’s worsening condition, a string of local fatalities, and Arion’s own recent brushes with death seem ominously linked…to Bo’s otherworldly family. As Arion’s feelings for Bo intensify and his affections turn possessive, she must make a choice. How will Arion learn to listen to her own voice when Bo’s siren song won’t stop ringing in her ears?” Read The NYC Talon full review here.

A Court of Mist and Fury

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sara J Maas

The second book to Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury resumes with Feyre after her harrowing experience freeing the Fae from Amarantha’s evil clutches under the mountain. You definitely need to have read ACOTAR prior to this, but you won’t regret it, you’ll find yourself zooming through all 640 pages of this book in no time. This story is amazing. Read more here.

Food Whore: A Novel of Dining and Deceit

Food Whore by Jessica Thom

Sort of like The Devil Wears Prada, but for the food scene, Food Whore by Jessica Tom is one of my favorite summer reads. “Full of wit and mouth-watering cuisines, Jessica Tom’s debut novel offers a clever insider take on the rarefied world of New York City’s dining scene in the tradition of The Devil Wears Prada meets Kitchen Confidential.” Pick it up here.

One Paris Summer

One Paris Summer by Denise Swank

For teens, One Paris Summer by Denise Grover Swank, is a recipe for a great summer read. Sophie Brooks and her brother are sent to spend a summer in Paris with their father who had suddenly abandoned them a year earlier. Now he’s about to remarry and we watch Sophie as she struggles with feelings of betrayal, loyalty, love, her dreams of becoming a pianist, and of course an evil stepsister. The summer she dreaded soon promises to become the best summer of her life. Pick up this classic YA contemporary on amazon here.

Forever Doon

Forever Doon

The final book to Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon’s Doon series has us feeling bittersweet – we don’t want to say goodbye! Forever Doon picks up where we left off – with the Brig o’ Doon destroyed and the portal fragmented, Doon’s forces are divided and isolated in different dimensions. Can Vee, Jamie, Kenna, Duncan, and Doonians (both old and new) pull together and save their kingdom or will the witch of Doon destroy them forever? I loved this fun YA series and have to say this final book gave me chills! Pre-order for the August 2nd release date here.

The Books That Changed My Life: Reflections by 100 Authors, Actors, Musicians, and Other Remarkable People

The Books that Changed My Life

A book for book lovers and writers, this collection by Bethanne Patrick features one hundred of today’s most prominent literary and cultural icons talking about the books that hold a special place in their hearts, that changed their life, why they love them, and their passion with readers everywhere. Regan Arts has teamed up with literary charity 826National, which will receive a portion of the books proceeds to provide students ages 6-18 with opportunities to explore their creativity and improve their writing skills, find out more here.

Strangers on a Bridge: The Case of Colonel Abel and Francis Gary Powers

Strangers on a Bridge

Contrary to popular belief (a.k.a. my sister), I do not exclusively read YA. I’m also an ardent fan of historical non-fiction. If you’ve seen Bridge of Spies starring Tom Hanks, you’ll know a little bit about the 1962 exchange that occurred on Glienicke Bridge. Take a more in-depth and riveting look with an insider account from James B. Donovan himself, who was appointed to defend Abel. I’ve saved the best for last, although it’s at the bottom of this write-up it’s actually at the top of my to-read list. Pick it up here.

For more great content about summer, please be sure to check out these awesome posts written by my fellow Chosen Chix bloggers:

8 Books to Pre-Order In Time for the Fall

The summer of 2015 has already given us a plethora of good reads as well as another Harper Lee book to add to our shelves with Go Set a Watchman, and the fall literary lineup promises to be no less exciting! Check out these highly anticipated books, and pre-order them before they fly off the shelves. Here are 8 books you’ll want to be reading this fall, long after the back to school rush and way into the holidays:

Books to Pre-Order in Time for the Fall 2015 | read more at nyctalon.com

My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life

My Kitchen Year

For those of you who are fans of food, recipes, food writing or just plain good writing. In this book Ruth Reichl, arguably one of food’s greatest storytellers and former editor in chief for Gourmet magazine, shares how food – and in this case, cooking – helped her cope with the folding of the aforementioned magazine back in 2009. The book contains 136 recipes, pre-order on amazon here, or see the book’s page on RandomHouse.com. The book goes on sale September 29th.

Shades of Doon (A Doon Novel)

Shades of Doon

The highly anticipated third installment of the YA fantasy Doon series by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon is slated to release on September 1st. Shades of Doon continues the story of Veronica and Mackenna (and subsequently Jamie and Duncan) as the girls find themselves thrust out of the idyllic kingdom of Doon and back into their old lives. I personally can’t recommend this series enough and can’t wait to get my hands on Shades of Doon! Preorder on amazon here, or check out the book’s page here.

Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure and Coloring Book

Lost Ocean by Johanna Basford

While technically a coloring book and not a book book, Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure is the latest in the best selling series of adult coloring books by Johanna Basford and is definitely one worth picking up. Both entertaining and relaxing, Johanna’s previous release Secret Garden has purportedly sold over 2 million copies worldwide! Preorder it here on amazon, it hits shelves on October 27th.

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles)

Winter The Lunar Chronicles

The concluding book of the Lunar Chronicles, if you haven’t yet read this hit series you’ll want to start with Cinder and work your way here. Will Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters? This sci-fi fantasy is sure to be a perfect accompaniment to your favorite pumpkin spice latte and softest knit sweater! Set to hit shelves on November 10th, preorder it here.

The Nerdy Nummies Cookbook: Sweet Treats for the Geek in All of Us

Nerdy Nummies

The long awaited cookbook from YouTube star and creator of our favorite Nerdy Nummies, Rosanna Pansino shares her favorite geeky recipes! Sure to satisfy the nerdiest sweet tooth with recipes like Apple Pi Pie and the Periodic Table of Cupcakes – this cookbook is perfect for gifting or keeping all to yourself. The Nerdy Nummies Cookbooks hits shelves on November 3rd, preorder it here!

Why Not Me?

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

As a fan of Mindy, her Project, and her last book – we can’t wait to get our hands on Why Not Me?, a collection of essays that are sure to be both hilarious and insightful. Apparently Mindy tackles hard hitting topics like seeking new friendships in lonely places, attempting to be the first person in history to lose weight without any behavior modification whatsoever (we can totally relate). The book releases on September 15th, preorder here.

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, Book 1: The Sword of Summer

Magnus Chase

Rick Riordan has a new series, ‘nuff said. But seriously, fans of Riordans bestselling Percy Jackson and the Olympians are sure to love this adventure in Norse mythology with the story of Magnus, a troubled kid from Boston who finds out from an estranged uncle that he happens to be the son of a Norse god. Magnus is plunged into an adventure the might just cost him his life, preorder it here, it hits shelves on October 6th.

The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science

The Food Lab

As Serious Eats’s culinary nerd-in-residence, J. Kenji López-Alt focuses on the science behind beloved American dishes, delving into the interactions between heat, energy, and molecules that create great food. If you’re a fan of Serious Eat’s, food-science (or that Alton Brown show, Good Eat’s), food, recipes, and amazing photography, then you’ll want to get your hands on this cookbook. The Food Lab releases on September 21st, preorder here.

My Latest Obsession: Litographs!


Content Disclosure It’s not too often that I stumble upon the perfect gift – and by perfect I mean, it’s a gift that pretty much everybody I know would completely and absolutely love. Because most everybody I know loves to read, and my closest friends and family happen to be serious fans of all the classics, I feel like Litographs has scored a prime spot on my personal gifting guide.

What is Litographs? I’m glad you asked, because they’re pretty much the coolest thing ever. Litograph’s was started by this guy name Danny, Danny loves books and had this amazing idea to translate that love of books onto prints (posters) and t-shirts! How cool is that? I was lucky enough to receive an Alice in Wonderland t-shirt, and The Secret Garden poster.

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The Alice in Wonderland t-shirt runs for $34 with $2.99 in shipping, which is more than reasonable seeing as how much work goes into each shirt.

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This is my shirt from the front…

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and from the back – you can actually read every single word if you like!

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A closer look.

I’ve loved both stories since I was a little girl and when you read a favorite book over and over again, it becomes familiar, like an old friend. What I love is that Litographs has transferred those books into works of wearable art and displayable design. That way old favorites can be revisited and remembered without ever turning a page!
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This is what my poster looks like, I’ve dropped it off at Michael’s to be framed. I can already see my walls being filled with these prints!
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I could explain all the hard work that goes into Litograph’s, but Danny does a far better job that I could have in this video (found on his Kickstarter page) here.

I definitely predict Litographs Gatsby prints and shirts becoming a massive hit, what with the movie coming out. I loved the book when I read it back in High School, and I know I already have my eye on the poster!

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The Great Gatsby poster and t-shirt is available in store online now!

Check out Litographs here! And be sure to sign up for their email updates, they send out a $10 off coupon code for every new release (usually on Tuesdays and Thursdays)!

Disclaimer

My BlogHer ’12 Bag!

As you’ve probably heard from either here on my blog or on my twitter feed, this August I’ll be attending BlogHer’12- a massive blogging conference here in our very own NYC. So for the past few months I’ve been pretty preoccupied with the conference- what to wear, the size of my business card, the parties, the expo hall, the sponsors- pretty much everything you can think of. So with the conference less than two weeks away I thought I’d post about what’ll be in my bag-


I’ll more than likely be bringing this bag (I’m prone to changing my mind so don’t quote me on that) it’s super roomy, lightweight, and colorful. I’ve heard a few fellow bloggers mention keeping things on the small side, but I’ve never been a small purse sort of gal. Plus, I don’t have a hotel room – so I have to carry everything that I’ll need on me.

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Naturally, I’ll be taking a nice stack of business cards. I pretty much stocked up for the next ten years of blogging conferences as far as business cards go. I have a few left over from a moo.com order, 250 from UPrinting, and 100 – which double as magnets. So if you see me at BlogHer- lets trade cards, chances are I haven’t run out.

.I’m bringing a few make-up essentials. Lip gloss, hair bands, sunblock, eyeliner, benefit BADgal lash mascara, and my new favorite- MagiX Face Perfector by avon. I really love this product because, as I’ve mentioned before, I have really shiny skin and this works as a sort of finisher that gives your skin a very matte shine free look. It’s also SPF 20, which is really good. I’m using one of the bags I got from one of Target’s beauty bag promotions- which I absolutely love!

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I’m also bringing hand sanitizer- for cleaning up, body spray- both the sanitizer and spray are from Bath & Body works, a travel size deodorant, a small notebook, a small compact mirror, fold up flats, mints – for obvious reasons, and a couple pens.

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Somewhere in there I’ll probably have a book, since I’ll be traveling on the train home and I’ll need something to keep me up. I’m actually re-reading (for the thousandth time) The Hobbit, so I can gear myself up for the film.

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I’ll also have a print out of the tickets for any events that I may or may not be going to (stick around, I promise FULL event coverage). My point and shoot, and spare batteries for my point and shoot. I’m also supposed to be getting a brand new smartphone this week, I really wanted a Windows phone like the Nokia Lumia or the Samsung Focus- but that didn’t really work out. However, Windows is a BlogHer sponsor – so hopefully I’ll get to chat with them about their phone and pick their brains about their phones!

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So what are you bringing to BlogHer? What’ll be in your bag? Am I forgetting anything??? Let me know in the comments section below!