Linda Stevens's blog

Friends of the Library Drawing Winner

Congratulations to Susan Meeks from the West University Branch Library!  Susan is the winner of the Harris County Friends of the Library drawing for a new Kindle Paperwhite and cover.  Thanks to our generous donors and to all who participated to support the Friends and HCPL!  Funds raised will be used to support summer reading programs at all Harris County branches. 

For more information about supporting the Harris County Friends of the Library, visit www.hcfol.org or volunteer for your local Friends group and make a difference in your community.

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Support Your Local Romance Writer

wanted undead or aliveWe hear a great deal nowadays about buying local and eating local, but what about reading local?  I was preparing a presentation about hosting an author visit and it made me think about the talented and wide-ranging crop of local writers available in the romance genre. 

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Starting Over

I am a firm believer that book series should have a definite beginning and end, and not just keep continuing on because they are selling well.  All of you series readers know what I mean -- sometimes no matter how much you love the characters, the story has come to a natural conclusion.  How do authors bring that about in a way that will satisfy their fans and then try something new?

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Hot Off the Press in October

lady by midnightLibrarianship is not a profession that is generally associated with many perks.  We do have one, though, that is very exciting for us.  We get to read some new books before they have reached their release date.  We are passionate about this.  We sometimes riot at conferences over the latest pre-release that no one else has.  (A slight exaggeration, but only slight.)  I've been lucky enough to get a good batch recently, without resorting to violence, and I want to share them with you.

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Talking the Talk

chasing magicHave you ever thought about how difficult it must be for an author to convey the sound and rhythm of a character's speech?  What a powerful tool that can be for a novel when conveyed correctly.  The other night I got up from reading a book to walk the dogs and realized I was speaking to my neighbor in a speech pattern not my own, but that of one of the characters in the book I was reading.  That's how you reel in a reader!

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The Amazing Read: Summer Reading Challenge, Week 10

amazing readI'm back from last week's visit to another world.  I decided to visit Graphic Novel Land, and spent some time in the Sandman's dream world and the altered Victorian detective world of Ruse, which I found as a suggestion from another summer reader.  I enjoyed my time "out of this world" thoroughly.

We are now in the final week of The Amazing Read, so let's end on an inspirational note:  Read something that helps make you a better person.  You can take the spiritual or...

Houston Housing Choice Voucher Program

keysFor one week from Monday, August 20 to Sunday, August 26, 2012, the Houston Housing Authority will for the first time in 6 years be accepting applications to get onto the waiting list for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. The voucher program helps low-income families, senior citizens and persons with disabilities rent safe, affordable homes in and around Houston. 

Houston Housing Authority’s online application for the Housing Choice Voucher Program is available at www.housingforhouston.com.   Complete an application to sign up for an online lottery for the housing assistance waiting list.  The application is offered in English and Spanish.

The program begins on August 20th at 8 a.m. and ends August 26th at midnight

Reading Romance Out Loud

romance audiosI am an avid audio book listener, but I don't usually listen to books from the romance genre.  The first reason is that I'm given to inappropriate giggling when hearing some chapters, rather than reading them, and that takes you right out of the story.  The second reason is that I think it is very hard to get the voices right for a romantic novel.  A recent experience I had listening to the latest by a favorite author made me recoil every time the narrator used a man's voice.  The voice she used for the hero reminded me of the millionaire on Gilligan's Island, who I'm sure was a very nice man, but not really the figure I wanted to imagine.

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We Have a Winner at Fairbanks Branch Library!

ereadersCongratulations to Ryan from our Fairbanks Branch!  He is the latest winner of a Nook Simple Touch in the Adult Summer Reading prize drawings.  Remember to register, read and log five books or 600 minutes by Saturday, August 11th to be eligible for the grand prize drawings.  Winners will be randomly drawn from those who complete the program for a Kindle Fire, a Nook Tablet, and one $30 Amazon gift card for each branch location.  Happy Reading!

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The Amazing Read: Summer Reading Challenge, Week 8

amazing readI could spend the whole summer exploring last week's challenge, but I'm learning to mix up my reading diet.  My funny read revisited some old friends, P.G. Wodehouse's Bertie Wooster and his butler Jeeves.  I chose Right Ho, Jeeves because it features my favorite of Bertie's silly friends, Gussie Fink-Nottle, and his hilarious prize-giving speech at Market Snodsbury grammar school.

This week we're going to be a bit more informative and challenge you to read something in the news

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