Monday 8 December 2014


Penguin Annual Women's Fiction Evening

Last week I received a super last-minute (the day before) invite to Penguin's Annual Women's Fiction Evening and even if I'd been busy the night of the event (which thankfully I wasn't) I would've changed my plans, because the email included a huge list of fabulous authors I admire. To get the chance to not only enter the glorious Penguin offices on the Strand (working there has been my dream for many, many years) but also get the opportunity to mingle with so many talented ladies sounded like the perfect way to spend an evening - and it definitely was.

After being invited to the Penguin Blogger Night earlier this year and Penguin's Annual Fiction Showcase just a few weeks ago by my blogging friend Laura, I was thrilled when I could finally return the favour and invite her as my +1 to the Women's Fiction Evening, especially because we both love this genre of books so much.

So often high expectations can lead to disappointment, but the evening was even more brilliant than we could've possibly imagined. We got to admire piles and piles of beautiful books that are being published next year (I admit, I may have stroked a cover - or two), chat to lots of Penguins (who were lovely, even if I am a tad bit envious of their jobs), enjoy endless refills of Prosecco and scrumptious canapes (I especially loved the mini pigs in blankets and the salmon blinis), meet fellow bloggers (hi Bronagh and Rea!) and of course mingle with a whole host of awe-inspiring authors.

Just some of the books on display

We got the chance to talk to the likes of Jojo Moyes (I was totally starstruck when I asked her to sign my copy of The Girl You Left Behind, my absolute favourite of hers, and while we chatted about her work on the Me Before You screenplay), the always lovely Lucy Robinson (who definitely won for the most eye-catching proof of the night as the popping neon pink could be spotted - and coveted - from across the room), Giovanna Fletcher (who made the effort to be there, even though she was ill, bless her), Louise Candlish (who was so sweet and even remembered me from Twitter!), the gorgeous Sinéad Moriarty, Kate Riordan (who wore the most gorgeous, sparkly shoes), Dinah Jefferies, Jane Shemilt and Eve Chase. Told you it was an amazing line-up of people, and we didn't even chat to all the authors there!

My one regret (as always) is that I didn't take any pictures with the authors (as I found it a bit awkward to ask) or of anything else really but the mountains of books. Ah well, there's always a next time (if I'm lucky enough to be invited again!).

We all got beautiful bright orange Penguin goody bags as we left (which had cards from all the releases there, chocolate, tea, a Penguin cookie and a novel) and were allowed to grab whichever books we liked from the tables. I felt like a kid in a sweet shop and came away with:

My glorious, glorious spoils from the night (most of these are signed too!)

Thanks so much to Cat from Penguin for the invite! You've made two book lovers very, very happy :)

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