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My Top 10 Favorite Signed Books

by  | August 7

I’ve heard people question why others get so excited over signed books, and my answer is, “How do you not get excited over signed books??” I’ve definitely been the person who bought an extra copy of Looking for Alaska by John Green simply because it was signed. I once waited four hours to get books signed by Neil Gaiman, and I have traveled way too far, way too many times, to have things autographed by Scott Westerfeld. (I’m a bit obsessed.) I love the experience of meeting an author—ideally—but there’s also just something special about having a copy that’s signed. Yes, I don’t know why. I don’t question it. I just keep collecting them.

So, without further ado, for my fellow signed-book lovers, here are ten of my favorite autographed books on my shelves.

My Squirrel Days

My Squirrel Days

by Ellie Kemper

I became an Ellie Kemper fan due to the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and when I heard she was going to be signing in our booth at BookExpo, I was super excited. Unfortunately, we didn’t have copies of her full memoir at the time, so I was able to get only a bound sample chapter signed, but I still treasure it. I also got to say six words to her: “Are you ready to get started?” This will be one of my lifelong claims to fame. Plus, her memoir is hilarious, and I made sure to get a full copy once the bound books were available.

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Welcome to Night Vale

Welcome to Night Vale

by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor

It was my first BookExpo. I had been hired at Simon & Schuster, but I didn’t start for another week, and I had a badge for BookExpo via my internship. I had all the time in the world to wait for books. Thus, as a huge fan of the Welcome to Night Vale podcast, I got on the signing line for this one early and became friends with a group of women sitting on the ground waiting for Joseph and Jeffrey. We were among the first ten in line, and I skipped off with this beautiful autographed ARC. Whether you’re a fan of the podcast or not, this first Night Vale novel has Joseph and Jeffrey’s signature dark and bizarre humor, and I love it.

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Afterworlds

Afterworlds

by Scott Westerfeld

As a huge Scott Westerfeld fan, this was not the first book by this author that I got signed, but it was the first one where I drove down from my college town in Central New York to attend the book launch in New York City. And my time was definitely well spent. I’m so happy to have a signed hardcover copy of this novel about a debut teen author told in alternating chapters with the star of her paranormal novel.

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What Happened

What Happened

by Hillary Rodham Clinton

Okay, this one still makes me so mad. After Simon & Schuster published What Happened, we were promised Hillary Clinton would come into the office for a signing. Which she did. While I was in Arizona for Christmas. So, while I didn’t get to meet Hillary Clinton, I did receive this signed copy with a nice note from my boss. At least I got to read her incredible account of the 2016 election. But still, I can’t believe this happened.

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Let It Snow

Let It Snow

by John Green, Lauren Myracle, Maureen Johnson

John Green was the first author I ever met. This was pre-The Fault in Our Stars, when he came to my high school to talk about Paper Towns and sign his books. I brought my entire stack, but this still remains the best one. I told him I was going to ask co-author Maureen Johnson to sign it at some point, so he crossed out both Maureen’s and Lauren’s names. I then got Maureen to sign it a year later, and…this is the result. Let me just say that this holiday novel, told in three parts, has the same level of humor as this signed page.

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Going Bovine

Going Bovine

by Libba Bray

This is my absolute favorite Libba Bray book, which is about a boy who gets mad cow disease and travels cross-country with a punk rock angel, a death-obsessed dwarf, and a talking lawn gnome in search of a cure from a mysterious Dr. X. Yep, I just had to get this one signed. And while I don’t remember the exact circumstance, I apparently informed Libba that I was planning to move to New Jersey in January. Thus, she gave me some fabulous advice on this signed page.

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Girls on Fire

Girls on Fire

by Robin Wasserman

This book is incredible. And dark. And disturbing in the best possible way. It’s Robin Wasserman’s first adult novel, and it’s about the intenseness of female friendships. But let me reiterate, it is DARK. I read Girls on Fire in ARC form, and then when I saw the trade paperback launch was going to be at Housing Works Bookstore in the Village, I made sure to attend. I also happened to have met Robin Wasserman once before when she Skyped into a writer’s conference I was running when I was sixteen. She remembered. It was fantastic.

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A Dream Called Home

A Dream Called Home

by Reyna Grande

Due to traffic, I had to rush-walk twelve blocks to get to a work event in super uncomfortable shoes after paying $20 for a cab that went nowhere to get this copy signed. It was worth it. This is one of my favorite memoirs of all time. The sequel to The Distance Between Us, it’s Reyna Grande’s story of coming of age in America and finding herself as a first-generation immigrant. The writing is incredible, and when she achieved her dreams, I cried.

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The Woman in Cabin 10

The Woman in Cabin 10

by Ruth Ware

Ruth Ware was the first author I officially met within the walls of Simon & Schuster. She came to the office to sign books for all of us, and I’m still thrilled to have a signed copy of The Woman in Cabin 10. This murder mystery/thriller is classic Ruth Ware, featuring a small cruise ship, a journalist who thinks she saw a body thrown overboard, and a crew who insists there was no one staying in cabin 10.

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Little Bee

Little Bee

by Chris Cleave

This book still has my favorite first paragraph ever, beginning with “Most days I wish I was a British pound coin instead of an African girl. Everyone would be pleased to see me coming. Maybe I would visit with you for the weekend and then suddenly, because I am fickle like that, I would visit with the man from the corner shop instead . . .” You can’t stop reading it. So, imagine how thrilled I was when these custom-printed editions of Little Bee from Chris showed up on all our desks. Now I have one of the most beautiful stories I’ve ever read captured in one of the most beautiful packages on my shelf. Thanks, Chris!

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