Fiction

Book Hunters in Brief #80: Historical Fiction for the 4th of July

This being Houston, Texas, it's been hot since about Valentine's Day, but for me it's not really summer until the fireworks go up on the Fourth of July. That's when "It's too dang hot" becomes an acceptable excuse for avoiding any number of unpleasant chores, and doing any at all besides sipping tall cool drinks, your feet resting on a 20,000 BTU AC while you methodically work down through a big stack of books is not only ill-advised--it's very nearly insane.

Book Hunters in Brief #79: Harry Potter's First Publication Anniversary

A lot of us grew up with Harry Potter--literally. That was part J.K. Rowling's genius; her character's aged in a fairly good facsimile of real time right along with her target audience. Another part of her genius was not just the originality and charm of the world she imagined, but it's completeness. We stepped into the world of Harry Potter and it was both strange and oddly familiar--much like the world we live in--only more full of possibilities, more morally well-defined, more fun.

Book Hunters in Brief #78: Juneteenth

I would guess that over the years I have driven or been driven past the big pink brick house with the wrought iron balcony that sits at 24th and Broadway in Galveston nearly a thousand times, and If I ever knew that on a muggy day in June 1865 a Union General had stepped out on that balcony and by reading a terse snatch of text with the very prosaic title, "General Order No. 3" freed the slaves of Texas, I have long since forgotten it.

Book Hunters in Brief #77: Paper Towns

This week Book Hunters in Brief salutes a man with an eminently forgettable name and an uncanny ability to remember what it was like to be a young person in this big old world, John Green.

Uzumaki

Manga author Junji Ito is often hailed as the Japanese answer to Stephen King, and his manga Uzumaki is probably the most well-known of his works. Uzumaki is the story of high school girl Kirie Goshima living in a small Japanese town suddenly and mysteriously cursed with a variety of horrifying situations all tied to spiral shapes. What initially appears to be strange, unfortunate, but isolated incidents eventually become clearly linked by these spirals. Over time, the citizens are reduced to paranoia and madness and Kirie must discover the nature of the curse if she wants to survive.

The Wake

In the field of comics and graphic novels, Scott Snyder is a master. His graphic novel The Wake is a prime example of just how much he can really shine as a storyteller.

Book Hunters in Brief #76: Superheroes for Super Summer Reading!

The sun is out (for a change) and school is almost out. So, here at HCPL, our minds turn to Summer Reading 2015. We have programs for babies, kids, teens and adults, along with fun events at all our branches, cool incentives and drawings for some hot prizes for everyone who reaches the reading goals.

Book Hunters in Brief #74: Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

This week, the Book Hunters want to celebrate the contributions to American culture made by people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent. And there are plenty. Consider this: were it not for Asian Americans, this land of capitalism with a capital "C" would have no tycoons. Then, consider this: our Marines wouldn't be gung ho. And this: we would have no cousins living out in the boondocks. And finally consider this: without the contributions of Asian Americans, we wouldn't even have that most American of vegetables: ketchup.

Book Hunters in Brief #73: Mother's Day

Mothers. If we all weren't born with one, someone would have had to invent them. Who else would have put up with your terrible twos and your even terrible-er teens? Who else would remind you to put on your helmet every single, solitary time you got on your bike, so that on the one occasion you really needed it, you had it on? Who else would have read Honey Bunny Funnybunny to you every night for a month and a half when you were three without complaint?

Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Johannes Cabal is not a happy customer. A year after selling his soul to a demon for the secrets of Life and Death, he discovers living without it isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. So he does the only thing any sensible customer would do in such a situation: demand to see the manager. There’s no return policy for souls in Hell, but Satan is prepared to cut Johannes a deal: he can have his own soul back in exchange for the souls of 100 others. He has one year.

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