This week, two authors discover their similar taste in glasses; slime and culture are celebrated; a debut author shows off his drawing skills; and a beloved author takes to the virtual road on tour.

Coincidentally Cyberpunk

On September 21, Blue Willow Bookshop in Houston hosted a virtual launch event for Battle Dragons: City of Thieves (Scholastic Press) featuring Alex London (r.) in conversation with Kwame Mbalia (l.) (Last Gate of the Emperor, Scholastic Press). The duo discussed how the protagonists in their respective books would interact with one another, whether dragons or middle school are rougher, and more. Both authors coincidentally purchased the same “cyberpunk rave glasses” from Etsy and wore them at the event for a happy surprise.

Super Slime Symposium

During an Instagram Live event on September 8 with Jhoanna Belfer (top), owner of Bel Canto Books in Long Beach, Calif., Mae Respicio (bottom) talked about her latest middle grade novel, How to Win A Slime War (Random House). The two had a lively discussion about the inspiration for Respicio’s new book, as well as how meaningful it is for both of them to be Filipina American women pursuing their passions within the literary community.

Distant Drawing

Middle grade author Stephan Pastis celebrated the launch of his first graphic novel, Trubble Town (Simon & Schuster), about a girl discovering the charms of the quirky town she lives in, with an in-person, outdoor event hosted by Copperfield’s in Petaluma, Calif. Pastis took questions from the audience and did drawing demonstrations for the students.

On the Rhodes

Author Jewell Parker Rhodes is currently in the midst of her virtual tour for her new middle grade novel Paradise on Fire (Little, Brown). Rhodes (r.) has participated in events with Elliot Bay Book Company in partnership with the NW African American Museum (in conversation with Brandy Colbert (l.), author of Black Birds In the Sky, Balzer + Bray), Politics and Prose (in conversation with Jason Reynolds, author of Stamped (for Kids): Racism, Antiracism and You, Little, Brown), Bookshop Santa Cruz (in conversation with Samira Ahmed, author of Amira & Hamza: The War to Save the Worlds, Little, Brown), Left Bank Books, and Curious Iguana.