Texas Authors: Robert E Howard, Creator of Conan the Barbarian

All Robert E Howard books here

Bet you didn’t know that Conan the Barbarian was actually from Texas.The creator of Conan was Robert E. Howard, who spent most of his life in Cross Plains Texas, just outside of Abilene.

Also: Vincent D’Onofrio and Renée Zellweger were in a movie called the Whole Wide World which is about Robert E. Howard’s life in Cross Plains.

Alkek Little Free Library

LittleFreeLibraryIntroducing the Alkek Little Free Library!

Located on Thorpe & Warden Lanes in San Marcos, it is a tiny library created to encourage the community to share, exchange, and read books. It is on Texas State property, Bldg. #967 at 1401 Thorpe Lane.

A team of Alkek Library staffers have launched a Texas State community service project to promote literacy to our San Marcos community through the Little Free Library program. The team, which started work in 2015, has included Lisa Ancelet, Gaye Wood, Tricia Boucher, Terry Hernandez, Roberto Gutierrez, Liz Sisemore, Emily Segoria, Megan Ballengee, Gina Watts, and Hithia Davis, the chair. The little wooden library was made by a volunteer from the community, Jason Pfanenstiel.

Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization that inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighborhood book exchanges around the world. Through Little Free Libraries, millions of books are exchanged each year, profoundly increasing access to books for readers of all ages and backgrounds.

As a major employer and organizational citizen of the San Marcos community, Texas State’s University Libraries feels a responsibility to share its Bobcat pride and spread the joy and educational benefits of reading beyond our campus.

The front bill poster proudly displays the Texas State logo and encourages people to enjoy a book and then return it and enjoy another. The idea is to get the community to share and read books in this free community exchange. The box was originally stocked with books donated by library staff.

A second box is planned to be located on property owned by the De La Cruz Family, who have partnered in this effort, on the corner of FM 1978 and Redwood Rd. later this year

Library staff used GIS Technology and expertise to identify locations within the community that are not in close proximity to public libraries, not in flood areas, and where the socio-economic and literacy data indicated a strong need for access to books.

The team is currently working with campus student organizations to maintain the boxes and is making plans to promote and expand the program.

Featured Author: Abraham Verghese, Medical Nonfiction Writer

All Abraham Verghese books here.

I first became aware of Abraham Verghese through his best-selling book, My Own Country, which chronicled the AIDS epidemic in a small Tennessee city (which also happens to be my hometown). Dr. Verghese wrote the book based on his own experiences, and I can tell you that it is completely accurate.

Since then, Dr. Verghese has gone on to write nonfiction about losing a tennis partner to addiction as well as fiction. Dr. Verghese currently works at Stanford University.

Read more in this biography

 

Faculty: Get Print Journal Articles Delivered To You with FADS

Faculty Article Delivery Service (FADS)

Alkek Library now delivers electronic copies of articles from our print journal collection right to your desktop. This service, called Faculty Article Delivery Service or FADS, is available to faculty at either the San Marcos or Round Rock locations.

Here’s how to request an article through FADS:

Simply use the Interlibrary Loan system to request any print article, by filling out an online loan request using your ILLiad account. The interlibrary loan staff will take your request and either digitize the article on demand if we subscribe to the journal in print OR obtain the article via interlibrary loan (if we do not subscribe to the journal).
You will receive the article in a timely manner via your ILLiad account and can access the digital version on your desktop in your office or home– no more trips to the library to find and copy the article!
Please note that articles available in our Research Databases, accessible from the library homepage, are not included in the FADS or ILLiad service. The library licenses several thousand full-text e-journals, providing faculty with easy access to the journal literature at work and home or on the road.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Interlibrary Loan office at 245-4893 or via email.

Literary Passings: Tom Wolfe

Our Tom Wolfe holdings here.

From the NPR obituary:

In a career that spanned more than half a century, Tom Wolfe wrote fiction and nonfiction best-sellers including The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test and The Bonfire of the Vanities. Along the way, he created a new type of journalism and coined phrases that became part of the American lexicon. Wolfe died Monday in Manhattan. He was 88.

Wolfe didn’t start a novel with a character or a plot, but rather, with an idea. In 1987, wearing his signature white suit, Wolfe told me how he began his first novel, a panoramic story of New York Society:

“I looked at the whole city first,” he said. “I wanted to do New York High and Low. I figured Wall Street could stand for the high end, and also some of the life on Park Avenue. And at the low end, there would be what you find caught up in the criminal mechanism in the Bronx. Once I zeroed in on these areas, I would then find the characters.”

The novel that grew out of Wolfe’s research — The Bonfire of the Vanities — was the tale of Sherman McCoy, a wealthy bond trader who loses everything after a wrong turn in the South Bronx with his mistress in the passenger seat. It was a huge critical and commercial success. Wolfe had written the novel from the same “you are there,” stream-of-consciousness, first-person perspective that he pioneered in his nonfiction 20 years earlier.

Literary Passings: Philip Roth

Our Philip Roth material here.

From the New York Times obituary:

The Nobel Prize eluded Mr. Roth, but he won most of the other top honors: two National Book Awards, two National Book Critics Circle awards, three PEN/Faulkner Awards, a Pulitzer Prize and the Man Booker International Prize.

In his 60s, a time of life when many writers are winding down, he produced an exceptional sequence of historical novels — “American Pastoral,” “The Human Stain” and “I Married a Communist” — products of his personal re-engagement with America and American themes.

And starting with “Everyman” in 2006, when he was 73, he kept up a relentless book-a-year pace, publishing works that while not necessarily major were nevertheless fiercely intelligent and sharply observed. Their theme in one way or another was the ravages of age and mortality itself, and in publishing them he seemed to be defiantly staving off his own decline.

Mr. Roth was often lumped together with Bellow and Bernard Malamud as part of the “Hart, Schaffner & Marx of American letters,” but he resisted the label. “The epithet American-Jewish writer has no meaning for me,” he said. “If I’m not an American, I’m nothing.”

And yet, almost against his will sometimes, he was drawn again and again to writing about themes of Jewish identity, anti-Semitism and the Jewish experience in America. He returned often, especially in his later work, to the Weequahic neighborhood of Newark, where he had grown up and which became in his writing a kind of vanished Eden: a place of middle-class pride, frugality, diligence and aspiration.

 

Featured Author: Rsyzard Kapusckinki, World Journalist/Storyteller

Interested in writing nonfiction, international journalism, or some of the best reportage ever put on paper?

Check out our Rsyzard Kapusckinki books (yes, we have them in English).

Kapusckinki wrote about colonialism in Africa, the breakup of the Soviet Union, the Soccer War in Central America (my personal favorite and you’ll have to get the book to get the whole story).

Often travelling outside the major cities, Kapusckinki regales us with stories of lemonade stands in Central Asia, the circular logic of policeman at an African road checkpoint, mountains of frozen ice from perpetually broken pipes in Siberia, and his comical attempts to navigate a city during a wartime blackout.