I love getting surprises in the mail. Today, I received a package from my publisher, Penguin/Plume, with a hot-off-the-press copy of their fall 2014 catalog. And guess whose novel makes an exciting appearance on the cover, with a two-page spread inside? Yep---THE LOOK OF LOVE, my seventh novel with Penguin, which I'm just finishing writing now. I can't stop staring at those green eyes. A little secret that I'll share: The original cover featured blue eyes, but I felt that my character's eyes should be green, like mine (an author gets to be, occasionally, bossy about these things!). So the artist changed them. And don't they look great (though mine are more sea-foam than emerald)? Jane, my character, is intrepidly curious, a little sad, searching, seeking, wondering, hoping, trying to make sense of this great beautiful mess that is life, and also fierce, in her own quiet way. She's a lot like me.



I'm so excited to share the cover for THE LOOK OF LOVE, my fall 2014 novel with Penguin. This is, without a doubt, my favorite novel and cover to date, and I can't wait to share the story with the world. For now, here's a quick peek at the text on the book jacket: "Born during a Christmas blizzard, Jane Williams receives a rare gift: the ability to literally see true love. Jane has emerged from an ailing childhood a lonely, hopeless romantic when, on her twenty-ninth birthday, she receives a card from a mysterious woman. Jane must identify the six types of love before sunset on her thirtieth birthday, or face grave consequences. When Jane falls for a science writer who doesn’t believe in love, she fears that her fate is sealed. Inspired by the classic song, The Look of Love will utterly enchant Sarah Jio’s rapidly growing fanbase." Audio rights have already sold (so exciting to this author, given that, er, it's not quite done yet!), and the story is available for pre-order on Amazon now (and soon at other sites).



Here I am, rocking the "O" and the "K" at the King County Library's Literary Lions Gala last weekend, along with a bunch of my author friends who clearly loved to ham it up in front of the camera (I'm talking about you, Cat Patrick, Amy Hatvany, and Carol Cassella!). True story: I tripped on the red carpet shortly after this. Anyone who knows me, will just nod and smile at this revelation. I am completely, 100 percent, clumsy. But, boy did we have fun that night!



I was so honored to be invited to be a guest author last weekend at the King County Library's Literary Lions Gala in Bellevue. The event raised more than $250,000 for literacy programs, and I had the chance to mingle with some amazing authors, including Amy Hatvany, Carol Casella, Nancy Horan, Pierce Brown, Cat Patrick, and many more.  My favorite part? Getting to meet one of my literary idols, Amy Tan. (Oh, and also the fun author group selfie from the stage!) What a night! Two comments on the above: My skirt looks too short and I don't know why I'm making this face! Oops. Amy Tan is as lovely as she is talented. She was a delight. The first thing Amy Tan said to me, even before I introduced myself, was "aren't you the author with three young boys at home?" I was so amazed that she knew about me at all! An amazing group of authors on one stage. Yes, there are two glasses of wine with me as I sign books.



A friend recently shared this lovely little video documentary about 20 strangers sharing a first kiss. It's funny, sweet, awkward (can you even imagine being paired up with someone from the street and agreeing to kiss them? Eek!) and oddly touching---some of these couples have serious chemistry. (I also adore the song playing in the background. It's called "We Might Be Dead By Tomorrow" by Soko. Perfection, and truth.)



Today I received an email from my foreign rights agent to share that Blackberry Winter, my third novel, continues to climb the bestseller list charts in Turkey. After six straight weeks on the list, it is now the #7 top-selling book in the country of Turkey, sharing list space with John Green, Khaled Hosseini and others. I am completely wowed and honored. I'm planning to visit Istanbul later this year for a special signing and appearance, and I cannot wait to thank my Turkish readers when I get there (and maybe have a few glasses of champagne too!).