ON THE SCENE WITH DARREN SHAN
It’s the right time of year for books about demons, vampires and other creatures of the night, making the recent U.S. tour for Cirque du Freak and Demonata series author Darren Shan particularly well-timed. Last month, Shan traveled to the States from Ireland for the tour, in support of The Demonata: Death’s Shadow, the seventh book in the Little, Brown series, which pubbed with a 60,000-copy first printing. The eight-city tour began on October 20 in Minneapolis, and continued on to Kansas City, Dallas, Austin, Miami, New Orleans and Phoenix before ending in Denver on Halloween.
Here, Shan poses in front of a welcome banner at Hill Country Middle School in Austin along with Matt, a student, and librarian Heather Schubert. Austin's BookPeople sponsored the event, at which all 200 students at the school were given fake vampire teeth.
Shan also attended the opening night of the “Scare for a Cure” haunted house in Austin, run by a nonprofit organization that raised more than $10,000 for breast cancer research during its 2007 haunted house. Here, Shan shows off a Scare for a Cure T-shirt with the organization’s founder, Jarrett Crippen, of the SCI FI Channel reality show, Who Wants to Be a Superhero?
Staffers and fans at Books & Books in Coral Gables, Fla., really got in the spirit for Shan’s appearance. Here, events coordinator Emily Pardo (r.) and local students show off some creepy costumes.
Shan also visited New Orleans, where the Cirque du Freak film, based on the first three books in his series, was recently filmed (the Universal movie, which is scheduled for a 2009 release, stars John C. Reilly, Willem Dafoe, Salma Hayek and Jane Krakowski). The series has sold more than 2.5 million copies in the U.S. Here, at John Q. Adams Middle School in Metairie, La., Shan signs a book for a fan, also named Darren (now a high schooler), who had convinced the school’s librarian to purchase Shan’s Cirque du Freak series.
The tour ended in Denver, Colo., where Shan visited Tattered Cover Book Store and a number of the fans in attendance wore costumes. His final event, on Halloween, was a school visit to Newton Middle School in Centennial, Colo., sponsored by Barnes & Noble.