Half Price Books presents the Half Price Blog featuring book reviews, music and movie reviews, trivia and randomness about things we love. That means a whole lot of fiction, nonfiction, music, movies, games, and collectibles… including rare and out-of-print literary treasures.
 
Meet all our Blog Authors & Contributors »

Authors
Becky
Potluck-genius, insomniac-procrastinator and crafting-whiz. Inventor of the “Hey that’s my Boots!” CEO Paper Doll, the HPB Snuggie, braille t-shirt and Tacky BW Holiday Sweater.
Emily
PR maven, news junkie, baseball fanatic, late-night talk show watcher, frequent restaurant diner and former VH-1 reality show addict.
Jim
Film buff and wanna-be chef. Who's up for dinner and a movie?! Crouching Tiger stir-fry or Godfather spaghetti and a bottle of vino. Please, no talking or texting during the movie.
JD
Music enthusiast and all around acceptable person. Take it or leave it, JD will say things about music that you'll either love, hate, or feel indifferent about.
Meredith
Donned in an apron, baking pies and other tempting treats – there's nothing desperate about this housewife. Loves travel, the great outdoors, classic films, indie music and non-fiction.
Steve
The Buy Guy is a quarter-century-plus employee expert on all things books & music; his favorite buy involved hundreds of old theology books from the Mount St. Michael Convent hilltop library in Spokane, Washington.
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Thursday
May292014

Local Store Events Round-Up: June 2014

Local Store Events Round-up: June 2014

Looking for something to do at your favorite book store? Check out these fun happenings at Half Price Books stores across the country during the month of June!

 

ALL STORES 

Summer Reading Program

Research shows that children who do not continue reading through the summer can lose a month or more of progress made during the school year. To help keep appetites up for reading, Half Price Books is hosting the FEED YOUR BRAIN® Summer Reading Program Sunday, June 1 - Thursday, July 31, 2014. Kids ages 14 and under can earn $5 HPB Bookworm Bucks as a reward for reading over the summer. Pick up a reading log at your local HPB today. Get started and learn more about Top Reader Prizes.

 

Biggest Storytime of the Summer

Join us in store on Sunday, June 8 at 2 pm as we kick off our FEED YOUR BRAIN® Summer Reading Program. Bring the kids of all ages for the Biggest Storytime of the Summer, as we celebrate reading and family literacy with this nationwide read-in event.

 

ARIZONA

Mesa 

Storytime Sundays

Pack up your half-pint readers and come to your Mesa HPB for Storytime Sundays. Sit down and enjoy a good tale with us from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. on the first Sunday of each month.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
May282014

Read the Movie: Your Summer Guide to Movies Based on Books

 

It's time again to give you a heads up on your reading list if you want to read the book before you see the movie. With summer movies in high gear there are actually a few good books hitting the big screen that are not titled X-Men or Spiderman. One of the most anticipated is The Fault In Our Stars by John Green. Be sure to grab a copy of one of these books and get the scoop on some of the summers best movies.

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Hazel and Gus are two teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them on a journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous given that Hazel's other constant companion is an oxygen tank, Gus jokes about his prosthetic leg, and they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. The Fault In Our Stars hits the big screen June 6.

The Giver by Lois Lowry

In a seemingly perfect community, without war, pain, suffering, differences or choice, a young boy is chosen to learn from an elderly man about the true pain and pleasure of the "real" world. Look for this film August 15.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

A group of boys, with no memories of their past lives, must escape a massive maze infested with deadly creatures. In theaters September 19.

A Walk Among The Tombstones by Lawrence Block

Private investigator Matthew Scudder, played by Oscar Nominee Liam Neeson, is hired by a drug kingpin to find out who kidnapped and murdered his wife. Coming September 19.

What book will you read first before you see the movie?

--

Jim is Art Director at Half Price Books Corporate.

Thursday
May222014

Storewide 20% Off Everything Sale at Half Price Books!

Greetings, booklovers! Half Price Books is having a Storewide 20% Off Everything Sale. Shop your neighborhood HPB from Thursday, May 22 through Monday, May 26 and stock up on great new and used books, music, movies and games for the whole family. Everything in store is on sale! No coupon needed. Discount will be taken at register. Sale valid in stores only. Not valid online, on any gift card purchase, or at Half Price Books Outlet locations.

See what treasures people find in stores, and tell us about your own. Use #HPBhaul in your tweets and on Instagram, and visit hpb.com/hpbhaul to see the action! 

-- The HPB Blog Team

Tuesday
May202014

11 Military Stories for Memorial Day

As we honor those who have fallen in service to our country, I find myself drawn again to stories about that selfless sacrifice. From movies to books, here are my recommendations of accounts of war I think are compelling and memorable for this Memorial Day.

I’ve been a military movie buff since I was a kid. Initially drawn to films meant more for entertainment than an honest account of war. Movies like The Longest Day, The Dirty Dozen, The Alamo, The Big Red One and The Great Escape were favorites. As I matured, so did my tastes, developing towards more truthful narrative. Galipoli, Paths of Glory, Platoon, Glory, and Saving Private Ryan are personal standouts.

In later years, I joined the Army, and subsequently deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. Ironically, my taste for war movies has sharply waned. After experiencing war first hand, I now find Hollywood typically falls short of the truth. I read more about war rather than watch it on screen now. Books allow more freedom to draw my own conclusions and at my own pace. Here are a few non-fiction books I recommend as a way to remember and honor the sacrifice others have made.

Citizen Soldiers by Stephen Ambrose is full of hundreds of amazing facts and first-hand accounts of Allied and Axis troops from the day after D-Day through the end of WWII in Europe. Another book by Ambrose, Band of Brothers, follows a group of Paratroopers during WWII and chronicles their life-long bonds forged in war. From the same author of Flags of Our Fathers, Flyboys by James Bradley tells the incredible and horrifying ordeal of US POWs on the Pacific Island of Chichi-jima. The Long Gray Line by Rick Atkinson is an intimate and honest portrayal into the complex lives of several West Point cadets from the class of 1966; their journey from school, through Vietnam and into their lives after the war. The Rough Riders by Teddy Roosevelt is a unique historical read, by a giant of American history. The personal accounts of Teddy Roosevelt’s experience in the Spanish American War is both insightful and engaging.

Whatever your plans for Memorial Day, please keep in mind those who made the ultimate sacrifice, even if that comes in the form of a book or movie.

--

Scott is Senior Designer at Half Price Books Corporate. He still serves in the Army Reserves and will be participating in Carry The Load this Memorial Day.

Friday
May162014

Vinyl Scratch Repair: Does the needle method work?

Everything is set for Bob Dylan’s birthday on May 24. I think I’ll throw on The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan album.

Oh no! There’s a scratch right in the middle of Blowin’ in the Wind.

Better scour the Interwebs for some vinyl repair tips. Hmmm. This WikiHow article on How to Fix a Scratch on a Vinyl Record sounds promising, but will it work? I've seen a lot of different articles that yeild a lot of different results. Let's give this one a whirl.

The supplies: a piece of paper, a needle, some tape, a turntable and some coins (optional). The article called for a nickel, but I went with two dimes because I'm a big spender.

Roll up the paper, tape it up into a cone, attach the needle, add the coin(s) as weights, and PRESTO! We've got ourselves a homemade phonograph. (This also comes in handy if you happen to have a turntable but don't own speakers.)

Let us listen for our scratch.

The answer my friend is blowin' in the SKIP
The answer is blowin' in the SKIP

There it is! What is the answer blowin' in?! I need to know!

Since the record is skipping forward, I apply gentle pressure away from the center of the album.

Hoo boy! That was nerve-wracking, but after giving the track another spin... SUCCESS!

The answer my friend is blowin' in the wind
The answer is blowin' in the wind

--

Darek is a Web Designer/Developer at Half Price Books Corporate.
You may follow him on Twitter at @jdtatum.

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