Local Store Events Round-Up: July

Looking for something fun to do during the hot summer months?  Stop by your local HPB for some fun summer activities!  Check out what’s going on this month.

40th Anniversary Celebrations:

All participating HPBs: Coupons & Prizes to Celebrate our 40th Birthday!

It’s our 40th Birthday! Come into your local HPB store on Friday, July 27 at noon for FREE birthday cupcakes and a birthday celebration! Hurry in before they’re all gone! Join the virtual party on Twitter too! When you sign our virtual birthday card, you’ll be automatically entered to win a $40 HPB Gift Card. Just use the hashtag #HPBturns40. Giveaway details.

Appleton, WI: 40th Birthday Party Raffle Woo-hoo! Come and help us celebrate Half Price Books’ 40 Years of Loving Books. Our Appleton HPB is having a party on Saturday, July 28 at 3pm. We’ll be giving away 120 yummy cupcakes with numbered wrappers. Hang on to that wrapper! It’s your raffle ticket for a chance to win a $40 HPB Gift Card. Offer good while supplies last. See store for details.

Northwest Highway, Dallas, TXWoo-hoo! Join us at our Flagship HPB as we celebrate our birthday all day on Friday, July 27. We will have refreshments, party bags for kids, and a FREE HPB tote bag with any purchase while supplies last. All $1.00 clearance items will be only 40¢. More FREE fun for the kids with a balloon artist from noon to 2pm, face painting from 2 to 4pm, plus a special appearance by BW, the HPB bookworm!

 All other participating Dallas-area HPBsWoo-hoo! Join us at our Dallas-area HPB stores as we celebrate our birthday all day on Friday, July 27. We will have refreshments, party bags for kids, and a FREE HPB tote bag with any purchase while supplies last. Also, drop your name in our raffle for a chance to win a $40 HPB Gift Card. Open 9am to 10pm.

Speaking of Birthdays . . .

It’s a Harry Potter Birthday Party at the Northwest Highway store in Dallas!

Harry Potter’s birthday is July 31st but we are celebrating a little early. Put on your robe, hop on your Nimbus 2000 and fly or teleport to our Flagship HPB on Saturday, July 28 from 6 to 9pm. We will have lots of wizarding fun with a costume contest, sorting hat, crafts, treats, plus a live snake show by Snake Encounters. Admission is limited! Hurry in today to pick up your FREE admission ticket available at our Flagship HPB only.

 Warehouse Sales:


Seattle Warehouse Sale

Our prices just got better. Join us for a fantastic book sale at our Washington Warehouse on Saturday, July 7 and Sunday, July 8 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Everything will be $3 or less Saturday, with prices dropping to $1 or less on Sunday. Get there early for the best selection and fill your shelves with great books, movies and music at great prices.

St. Paul, MN 


Everything $3 or less at the Tent Sale
As part of Highland Fest, join us just outside the St. Paul, Minnesota Half Price Books store on Thursday, July 19 through Sunday, July 22 for a Tent Sale for people of all ages! Tent Sale runs Thursday – Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Everything will be $3 or less (mostly less). Hardbacks and paperbacks, fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, music, movies, games and more. And best of all, we’ll gladly donate unsold merchandise to any person or organization with a 501(c)(3) status. For questions, please call us at 651-699-1391. Sale at this location only.

All Stores

Feed Your Brain Summer Reading Program

The Half Price Books Feed Your Brain Summer Reading Program continues through Tuesday, July 31, 2012, so keep your kiddos reading!  As a reminder, kids ages 14 and under can earn a $5 HPB Back-to-School Bucks reward in both June and July for reading at least 300 minutes each month.  The TOP READER in each age group at each store will also win a $20 HPB gift card! Pick up a reading log at your local HPB today or visit the Feed Your Brain website for more information.

Storytime – Multiple Locations

Many of our stores have weekly or monthly story times.  Check out this month’s listings:

Northwest Highway — Dallas, TX – Pack up your half-pint readers and come to our Flagship HPB for Storytime & Crafts Sundays. Sit down and enjoy a good tale and a special craft activity with us each Sunday from 1 to 2pm. Recommended for kids ages 10 and under.

Lincoln Square – Arlington, TXJoin us at Lincoln Square every Sunday at 2 p.m. for a fun tale.  Recommended for kids ranging from infants to 6 years of age. Refreshments will be provided.

Mesquite, TX Pack up your kiddos and visit our store in Mesquite every Sunday for Story Time and Crafts. Sit down and enjoy a good tale and free activity with us from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Readers and arts-and-crafts lovers of all ages are welcome.  

Rockwall, TX Visit us in Rockwall each Sunday at 3 p.m. for a fun story.  Stick around and get crafty with us with a new activity for kids each week. Story time recommended for kids ranging from pre-schoolers to 5th graders.  

South Arlington, TXPack up your little readers and come to South Arlington HPB for a fun story time. Sit down and enjoy a good tale with us at 3 p.m. every Sunday afternoon. Recommended for kids ranging from 2 to 8 years of age. 

Fort Worth, TX – Ridgmar – We’ll have summer storytime Thursday each week from 11 a.m. to noon throughout the summer.  Recommended for ages 10 and younger.

Hulen/Remington Park, Fort Worth, TX— Looking for a free, cool activity during the hot summer? Pack up your half-pint readers and come to our Hulen HPB for Storytime Sundays. Sit down and enjoy a good tale with us each Sunday at 2 pm, throughout the summer.

Humble, TX – Bring the kids for a children’s story time every Wednesday from 10:30 to 11 a.m.  Snacks will be provided.  Recommended for kids ages 1 to 6. 

Austin – South Lamar – Bring your half-pint readers and come to our South Lamar story for a fun story and craft each Wednesday from 3-4 p.m. (excluding July 4)  Recommended for ages 3 to 9.

Cedar Park, TX – Kids of all ages are welcome as we enjoy a good tale and a craft each Thursday from 2-3 p.m.

San Marcos, Texas – The San Marcos HPB will have a special story time and activity each Saturday at 1:30 p.m.  Refreshments will be provided. 

Huebner Road – San AntonioVisit Huebner Road the first Sunday of every month for Storytime Sunday at 2 p.m. Join our staff for a reading of one of our favorite children’s books, geared toward booklovers ages 2-8.  See you July 1!

Corpus Christi, TX Pack up your half-pint readers and come to Moore Plaza for Story Time Sundays. We’ll share a tale from 2 to 3 p.m. on the second Sunday of each month.  Recommended for kids ranging from pre-school to 4th grade.  See you July 8!

Mason, OH – Join us for a fun story each Tuesday from 11 a.m. to noon at our Mason HPB.   

Hurstbourne – Louisville, KY Bring the kids the third Saturday of every month from 2 to 4 p.m. for story time. Join us for sing-alongs, coloring contests, story-telling and more.  See you July 21!

Monroeville, PA— July Sunday Storytimes. Sit down and enjoy a good tale with us at 2pm each Sunday afternoon in July. On Sunday, July 29, kids can choose a FREE book from a pre-selected assortment. Recommended for kids ranging from 3 to 8 years of age. Refreshments will be provided. 

Superstition Springs, Mesa, AZ

Princess Grumpypants Book Signing

Join us at our Superstition Springs HPB for a fun story about a little girl who is a finicky eater. Author Vivian Stearns-Kohler will be reading, selling, and signing, Princess Grumpypants on Sunday, July 15, from 1 to 3pm. See store for details.

The Destiny Project Book Signing

Local author, James Wharton will be reading, selling, and signing his historical time travel novel, The Destiny Project. Come to our Superstition Springs HPB on Sunday, July 29, from 2 to 5pm. See store for details.


Kenwood Galleria – Cincinnati; Florence, KY; Hamilton, OH; Mason, OH

Dog Days at Half Price Books

Join us at our South Ohio locations to take a bite out of reading.  Load up the kids and bring them to Half Price Books where they can read a book to a loveable pup. 

  • Kenwood Galleria – read to Rudi the Shih Tzu each Monday from 11 a.m. – noon
  • Florence – read to Nico, the Great Pyrenees each Tuesday from 11 a.m. – noon
  • Hamilton – read to Potter, the Bearded Collie the first and Thursday of each month from 1 – 2 p.m.  See you July 5 and July 19!
  • Mason – read to Bella, the Pug on July 29 from 3 – 4 p.m.

Humble, Texas 

Fitness and Wellness Raffle 

This is the summer to achieve health in mind and body. Starting Monday, July 2, buy any fitness, sports, wellness, or health book at our HPB Humble store and get a chance to win one free month of martial arts lessons at Wang’s Martial Arts. Winner will be announced Saturday, July 7 at 7 p.m. See store for details. 

Acoustic Rock Fridays

What better way to start the weekend off right than with HPB and live music. Archie brings his acoustic mix style of 70s folk and 90s grunge to our HPB Humble store each Friday evening from 7 to 9 p.m. 

Southern Writers’ Day

Join us at our HPB Humble store and meet southern writers Melinda McGuire and Rhonda Dennis. McGuire will sell and sign Josephine: Red Dirt and Whiskey and Nelson and Cora. Dennis will sell and sign books from her romantic suspense series, Green Bayou. The event is Saturday, July 28 from 1 to 3 p.m. Attendees can enter a raffle for books and prizes. Must be present to win. See store for details.

Firewheel Plaza, Garland, TX

Robert Stevens, Jr. Book Signing

Author Robert Stevens, Jr. will be selling and signing his gritty psychological thriller, Issues. Join us at our Firewheel Plaza HPB in Garland on Saturday, July 28 from 1 to 3 pm. See store for details.

Kenwood Galleria, Cincinnati, OH

DeLisa J. Bracy Book Signing

Author DeLisa J. Bracy will be selling and signing her novel, Heart of a Man, a story about a former street hustler whose new relationship forces him to face his past hardships. Join us at our Kenwood Galleria HPB on Saturday, July 21, from 1 to 3pm. See store for details.

Northgate/Prospect Square

DeLisa J. Bracy Book Signing

Author DeLisa J. Bracy will be selling and signing her novel, Heart of a Man, a story about a former street hustler whose new relationship forces him to face his hardship past. Join us at our Northgate/Propsect Square HPB on Sunday, July 22, from 4 to 6pm. See store for details.

Dallas – Northwest Highway

Meet and Greet Boxer Rescue

Looking for a loyal friend, a lovable buddy, a canine companion? On the second Saturday of each month from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., NorCal Boxer Rescue will bring Boxer dogs available for adoption to our Flagship HPB store. Come see these lovable dogs looking for a good, forever home.  See you July 7!

Animal Adoptions

Cute kitties and canine companions will be visiting our Flagship HPB on the third Saturday of each month from noon to 4 p.m. The League of Animal Protectors, a nonprofit animal rescue and adoption organization, will have a select group of adoptable pets looking for good, forever homes.  See you July 21!

Houston – Clear Lake

Pet Adoption Cat-urdays

Looking for a cuddly kitty? A fancy feline? A companion cat? On the first Saturday of each month from noon to 4 p.m., Bay Area Pet Adoptions will bring lovable cats available for adoption to our Clear Lake HPB store. Come see the kitties looking for a good, forever home.  See you July 7!

Burleson, Texas

Tuesday Night Specials
Stop by our Burleson location each Tuesday night from 7 to 9 p.m. for discount specials. Great savings may include 20% off DVDs or 30% off fiction hardcovers. You won’t know what’s on sale until you visit. Tuesday Night Specials valid at this location only. Ask in store for details.

Mansfield, Texas

20% Off “Hump Day” Sale
Join us in Mansfield every Wednesday from 7-10 p.m. for a special 20% Off “Hump Day” Sale. Each week, we’ll feature a 20% discount on different categories of merchandise. Stop by today or call 682-518-7302 to find out what’s on sale this week! Hump Day Sale at Mansfield, Texas location only.

Avon, Indiana

Retro Thursdays

Think it’s still cool to be old school? Stop by the HPB in Avon every Thursday from 5-9 p.m. and get 20% off all vinyl, cassettes, comics, graphic novels and manga. Offer good at this location only.

Fort Wayne, Indiana

Comic Books Sale
Whamo! That’s right! Stop by the Fort Wayne location every Thursday and save an additional 20% off all comic books in store. Sale at the Fort Wayne HPB location only.

LP Day – Fridays
Join us each Friday for LP Day. All LPs will be 20% off, with some of your favorite songs being played on the turn-table.

Castleton Commons – Indianapolis, Indiana

Vinyl Fridays
Join us for a LP shopping spree! Get 20% off all vinyl on Fridays at our Castleton Commons HPB.  Come back each week for new discoveries and savings! No exclusions. All LPs discounted each Friday at this location until further notice.

South Arlington – Arlington, Texas

Retro Media Fridays

Get ready for a throwback! Join us at the Four Corners HPB in South Arlington every Friday night from 7-10 p.m. All retro media is 20% off – including LPs, cassette tapes, 8 tracks, VHS tapes and LaserDiscs.

Appleton, WI

Vinyl Fridays

Get 20% off all vinyl on Fridays from 7 to 10 p.m. at our Appleton HPB. Like what you hear? Records playing in the store are 50% off. Come back each week for new discoveries and savings! Discount at this location only.


As always, be sure to check your local store’s webpage to see if anything has been added throughout the month.

Happy reading!



This Will Make You Smarter: 5 Brainy Books

How can science explain the creative mind? What causes a spark or an idea for a new invention? Jonah Lehrer (@jonahlehrer) offers case studies to answer these questions in his new bestselling book Imagine: How Creativity Works. As a writer and creative professional, I’ve often theorized about originality and inventive thinking – “What is a truly original idea?” Through examples like invention of the Post-It Note, the formation of Nike’s “Just Do It” tagline, and how Mattel created the Barbie doll, Lehrer recounts how imagination and innovation function. Much like the style of Malcolm Gladwell, this book offers accessibility for the reader to grab hold of intellectual insights. Lehrer debunks common myths about inventions because “the radical concept was merely a new mixture of old ideas.” After reading this book you may learn to pay attention to your daydreams, where emotions and ideas are already flowing inside your brain.

Now here’s a book I was itching to read the first day it was released Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality by Scott Belsky (@scottbelsky). Ever since I met Scott in 2009, I’ve been inspired by his insights on creative thought and execution. Scott Belsky is on a mission to organize the creative world. His book distills years of research and interviews with productive and successful creative professionals to help the rest of us. Making Ideas Happen deconstructs the myths about what it means to be creative, and reveals simple ways to organize, articulate and produce ideas. Read this book if you’re hungry not just for theories, but tactics which you can put into practice.

A Brief History of Thought: A Philosophical Guide to Living was a bestseller in France where author Luc Ferry (@ferryluc) – a philophy professor at the University of Paris – is a notable thought leader and lecturer. He poses that philosophy is not an exercise for academic types, but a resource for all man kind to live fuller and freer through our thoughts, convictions and values. Ferry explores the foundation of wisdom from ancient to present day teachings. Many describe this book as accessible and concise, while others find it too dense with syntax to read quickly. Whatever your pace, you will likely find your mind stretched by the end of it, questioning and theorizing meaning in life. And, you’ll feel more knowledgable on the topics of Stocism, Humanism, Nietzche, Heidegger and more.

It’s a bold promise made in the title. This Will Make You Smarter: New Scientific Concepts to Improve Your Thinking, edited by John Brockman (@edge), is a compilation of essays from today’s leading philosophers, scientists, economists, physicists, sociologists and playwrights who each answer the question: “What scientific concept would improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit?” As the thought pioneers of their respective fields, they present 151 diverse ideas and perspectives on the human condition. It is, in short, a collection of dizzying fodder to challenge your mind. It may prove to be a mind-bending, vocabularly-enhancing read.

Long-time bestseller Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Fubner (@freakonomics) offers skilled storytelling and contorted insights to tackle topics of social sciences in a new way. This Steven/Stephen duo turns each topic on its head and pokes at hidden truths within our modern world. Well beyond examining how we think, Freakonomics creates a new way of thinking. It’s highly accessible and straight-forward. After reading this book, you’ll have stretched your brain a bit. Better yet, you’ll be well-armed for amusing and engaging conversation at a cocktail party. Since its original release in 2005, its been revised and expanded in additional editions. And in 2010, Freakonomics was adapted into a documentary film.

You might also be interested in…

13 Things I Learned from Malcolm GladwellThe Power of Habit by Charles DuhiggSeven Sins for a Life Worth Living

Buy Guy Files: 40 Years of Buying IV

Our store buyers never know what they’re going to see when they start a buy shift.  OK, so they know they’re going to see a lot of National Geographics, serial romances and Outlook 2003 manuals.  But they also know to expect the unexpected.

1. 100,000 Penguins

Several years ago, we got a call from the publisher Penguin, who was clearing out their archives.  They wanted to get rid of around 100,000 books, including thousands of file copies of the distinctively-designed Penguin paperbacks (more about them another time).    

Along with the paperbacks, we got thousands of hardbacks and trade paperbacks published by various Penguin imprints.  One treasure trove we came across was a box of assorted international editions and Penguin variations of the classic John Wyndham title Day of the Triffids.

In the photo, you may spot editions from Sweden, Spain, and Czechoslovakia.  The original mass-market Penguin cover shows a triffid, drawn by Penguin illustrator John Griffiths, based on sketches done by the author.

2. Things Found in Books

Buyers occasionally come across wonderful things left in the books our customers bring: pictures and postcards from earlier times, notes or news items about the book’s author (one book I got in had a note taped inside the front cover describing how the book’s owner had met the author at a journalists’ convention and the author had shot himself not long afterward), and ephemera that itself is of value, often of more value than the book itself.  Whenever the buyers see these impromptu bookmarks in time, they are returned to the customer; sometimes, though, the discovery is after the fact.

Other times, items are discovered in the boxes that are brought in.  One buyer came across a wooden box that contained a sterling silver ID bracelet, some old foreign bills, a letter from one of our US Presidents from around the WWII era, and lots of old family photos.  “We called the seller,” she says, “and he was so happy we had found all these old mementos he didn’t know he had in the box.”

A buyer in Houston a few years ago discovered at the bottom of a box of old, moldy books a menu from the famous Twenty-One Restaurant in New York.  It was from the 1950s, and was signed by Salvador Dali.

3. Dylan’s Harmonica

I’ll let Paradise Valley, Arizona, Store Manager Myles Chaplin tell you in his own words about buying a harmonica owned by “song-and-dance man” Bob Dylan.

4. School Days

Jeremy Evans, Manager of our Westport store in Kansas City, recently was sold a couple of yearbooks from Abilene High School in Abilene, Kansas, from the years 1906 and 1909.  “So what’s so special about those?” you may ask.   

Well, a certain Dwight David Eisenhower attended Abilene High School.  In 1906, he was a freshman, and 1909 was his senior year.

Jeremy donated the yearbooks to the Eisenhower Library, located in Abilene. They were very appreciative.

5. A Hunk, a Hunk o’ Collectibles

The opportunity for a great thematic display arose a couple of years ago when our Flagship store in Dallas bought a huge treasure trove of Elvis Presley memorabilia, including fan magazines, sheet music, and small-press memoirs by assorted associates of The King.

Most of it sold pretty quickly, but enough of it stayed around long enough for an attention-getting display in the store’s ephemera area, a room-size safe adjacent to their Collectibles section.

We’ve also put together a series of videos to help answer customers’ Frequently Asked Questions about selling to Half Price Books. Would you like to know what kinds of books we’re looking for? Or how to judge the condition of your books? Do you suspect you might have a first edition? Here’s how to spot a first edition, and how to figure out if it’s valuable.

Here’s the latest, which tackles the first and simplest question: “How to Sell to HPB?”

Steve is Staffing & Development Manager (aka the “Buy Guy”) at Half Price Books Corporate.

11 Quick Reads: Books Under 200 Pages

Some of the best things in life come in small packages, like diamond rings —  and short novels. One of my favorite things about short novels is that most have an incredibly simple plot, but fit an incredibly amount of emotion and even action into such a small package. These 11 “quick reads” are all under 200 pages (in at least one of their formats). Short novels can be fantastic to tote along with you this summer while lying on the beach for an afternoon or during the kids’ soccer practice.

Even at 11 books, this list seems incomplete. What quick read that’s under 200 pages would you add to this list? — Kristen B.

Wouldn’t It Be Nice (If We Were Older)

Two geniuses of pop music turned 70 years old this month … Brian Wilson and Paul McCartney! I still have “When I Grow up To Be A Man” and “When I’m Sixty Four” on my shuffle. It takes one aback! Hang in there, boys! Both are still out touring, looking a little better than Keith Richards in my book  (who turned 80 when he was about 35 – but still out there rockin’!).

We lost more than a handful of great ones this year, sorry to say: Whitney; Donna Summer; Adam “MCA” Yauch (Beastie Boys), another Gibb brother, Robin; Etta James, Earl “Breakdown” Scruggs; Levon Helm; Donald “Duck” Dunn, Davy Jones, Bugs Henderson. Have to mention Dick Clark and Don Cornelius too. Mercy…

But the music captures the memory and stays forever alive. That’s the magic! Here’s a toast to you all! Everyone present and accounted for in my ear buds.

— Jim Swayze

Five Things You May Not Have Known about JAWS– on its 37th Birthday!

Even if you’ve never seen this classic 1975 thriller, odds are you’d recognize (and fear) John Williams’ suspenseful Jaws score after the first two notes. DA DUM (DA DUM…DA DUM…DA DUM…etc.). Sound familiar?

Often rated as one of the greatest films of all time, Jaws is in a large part so effectively terrifying for what it doesn’t show. For most of the movie it’s just the ominous aforementioned music and some clever camera work that lets you know danger is near. When we do finally see the shark, it’s unexpected and jump-out-of-your-seat alarming. Do you remember this scene when Jaws first appears in all his toothy glory?

In honor of the nationwide release date 37 years ago today, here are a few bite-sized Jaws tidbits you may not have known:

  1. Jaws the film is based on Peter Benchley’s novel of the same name. The producers thought the manuscript was so exciting that they bought the movie rights before the book was even published.
  2. The mechanical sharks used for filming were so troublesome that the film went way over budget, and frustrated director Stephen Spielberg was forced to hint at Jaws’ presence with music, camera angles, and a fin for most of the film.
  3. Jaws and its obsessed shark-hunter Quint are often compared to Herman Melville’s Moby Dick and the vengeance-bent Captain Ahab. In an early version of the screenplay, Quint is actually shown watching the film version of Moby Dick.
  4. Jaws was the highest grossing movie of all time until Star Wars surpassed it in 1978.
  5. There are three sequels to Jaws, although none achieved the accolades of the original (and none of the sequels were directed by Spielberg) – Jaws 2 (1978), Jaws 3-D (1983), and Jaws: The Revenge (1987).

Do you remember seeing Jaws for the first time? Did it make you think twice before heading into the ocean?

— Kate

Countdown to Summer: 4 Fallen Angel Teen Fiction Series

Since we’ve already covered vampires in teen romance series, let’s visit the flip side: teen romances featuring fallen angels. But don’t be fooled. These fallen angels can be just as dangerous, mysterious and passionate as vampires.
Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick starts with teenager Nora Grey being interested in anything but romance. Everything changes however, when a mysterious guy named Patch becomes her lab partner. Nora can sense that Patch is dangerous, but is still drawn to him in some inexplicable way. Nora finds herself in the middle of a war between the immortal and the fallen angels and discovers that she might not be as human as she once thought. The series continues with somewhat musical titles: Crescendo is the second book, Silence the third, and Finale the fourth and final book, which is expected to be published later this year.
In Fallen by Lauren Kate, Luce Price is a teenager at a very strict boarding school in Savannah, Georgia. One day, she meets a mysterious guy, Daniel, who is your typical bad boy. Unfortunately for Luce, Daniel wants nothing to do with her, but Luce just can’t quite give up. She is determined to find out what makes Daniel tick and finds out he’s a fallen angel who chose to side with neither God nor Satan at the beginning of time. The fourth book in the series, Rapture, is coming out in just a few short weeks!
Unearthly is a series by Cynthia Hand which features Clara Gardner, a teenager who has recently discovered she is part angel. Through her discovery, Clara learns she has superhuman abilities and has been put on Earth with a purpose. Unfortunately, she can’t quite figure out what that purpose is. While trying to figure it out, Clara falls for two different guys and faces a difficult choice. The second book in the series, Hallowed, was published earlier this year and the third book is expected to be published some time in 2013.
In The Fallen by Thomas E. Sniegoski, after turning 18, Aaron starts to hear voices (even the voice of his dog!) and thinks he’s going insane. He’s an orphan, so he doesn’t know anything about his family history, or even who he can trust. But, he soon learns the truth about who he really is: a Nephilim, or the son of a mortal and an angel. Aaron learns his fate is to redeem the fallen angels and send them back to Heaven. At first he resists, but eventually he gives in and goes on the journey of his life. Check out this series if you’re interested in fallen angel series from the male perspective.
Thanks for tuning in to our Countdown to Summer series of Teen Fiction recommendations! If you missed any of the previous series, (or maybe Fallen Angel Teen Romance isn’t quite your style), check these out: 4 Vampire Romance Teen Fiction Series, 4 Dystopian Young Adult Series, or 4 SciFi/Fantasy Young Adult Series.

— Kristen B.

Meet the Bibliomaniac: Caroline Kellogg

Ever participated in a reading challenge?  Did you reach your goal?  Well one of our own, Caroline Kellogg from our Appleton, Wisconsin location, has set forth on her own reading odyssey.  She plans to read a book from EVERY sub-section of her HPB.  We’re not quite sure how many books that is, but we know it’s a bunch! 

So in this month’s “Meet the Bibliomaniac,” meet Caroline and learn more about her quest!

Name:   Caroline Kellogg   

Job Title:   Bookseller

When did you join the HPB team? I have been at the Appleton store since it first opened in 2009.

What is your favorite part about working at HPB? I would say my favorite thing about working here is that each day is different. It’s great to work for a company where your ideas are actually listened to and taken into consideration.

You’re reading a book from every sub-section of the store.  What made you decide to do that?  I decided I needed to start reading a greater variety of titles. I tend to stick with history and felt I was getting into a rut.

When did you start?  I started my quest about two months ago. 

How many books have you read so far?  And how many will you read?  Right now, I’m in the middle of my seventh book. I haven’t counted how many sub-sections there are at my store – I don’t want to get discouraged!

As of now, what has been your favorite subject?  Since I started, my favorite section has been Political Science.

Tell us what you plan to do when you get to cookbooks.  Because it would be mind numbing to read a cookbook from each sub-section, I have decided instead to make a recipe from each one. Some I will make for myself and my husband and I’m sure the desserts will be brought to work!

How are you keeping track of everything you’re reading?  I bought a notebook to keep track of my progress. When I choose a new book, I write the title, author and subsection down. When I’ve finished, I write a paragraph or two with my opinions. When I finish a recipe, I plan to take a photo of it and add it to my notebook. I’ll do the same thing in Home Arts as I am doing with cooking.

What is your all-time favorite book?  It’s difficult to pick an all-time favorite book. Two titles come to mind for my favorite fiction books are Little Women and Animal Farm, while The Diary of Eva Braun is a favorite for non-fiction.

Anything else to add? I get a bit worried when it comes to sections that I don’t have much interest in – I don’t want to get bored!  For example, I’m not a big Sci-Fi fan. In that case, I am relying on my co-workers to help pick a title for me. If any fellow HPBers have some great, interesting titles in any sub-section, please send them my way!


We’ll check back with Caroline later this year to see how she is coming along.  In the meantime, leave any recommendations you have for Caroline in the comment section!

— Emily

Attention Collectors: June’s Featured Finds

Half Price Books is a wonderful source for both new and used, rare and collectible, first editions and out-of-print titles, odd and unusal things. Since we buy and sell anything ever printed or recorded, our stores become a treasure trove of autographed books and other valueable items, alongside old yearbooks and other little pieces of history. Here’s a round-up of a few recently discovered items.

Signed Political Collection
Fascinated with Politicos? Our San Marcos HPB has obtained an excellent collection of signed political books including books signed by Presidents. Authors include: Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Mitt Romney, Edward Kennedy, Caroline Kennedy, and more.

For more information or to purchase one of these books, call 512-805-7503 or stop by the San Marcos Place HPB location in San Marcos, TX.

Buddy Holly Vintage Vinyl
Oh, Boy! It’s so easy…to find Buddy Holly collectible LPs. Just stop by our Richardson HPB where we have acquired a fabulous vinyl collection dating from 1957 to 1967. Maybe Baby you’ll Rave On these Everyday.

For more information, stop by our Campbell Village HPB in Richardson, TX or call 972-234-4286.


Collectible Photography Books
Our Richardson HPB has acquired an incredible collection of hardback photography books. Photographers include: Ansel Adams, Horst P. Horst, Andy Warhol, Kiki Smith, Helmut Newton, Richard Avedon, and more. Most are in excellent condition. Prices vary.

For more information, stop by our Campbell Village HPB in Richardson, TX or call 972-234-4286.

Deutsche Gedenkhalle, c. 1905
Art lovers, history buffs, and book collectors will appreciate this book of German history. Our Kansas City HPB has acquired this ornate folio published in 1905 in German. Includes a colorful lithograph frontispiece of Kaiser Wilhelm II along with 2 other plates created in the Art Nouveau or Jugendstil style. 100 additional historical photogravures. Condition is “war ravaged” as this scorched folio was salvaged during WWII. Binding is intact.

For more information, stop by our HPB store in Kansas City, MO or call 816-931-5377.

Safari Diary – Africa, 1961
Our Ridgmar HPB has acquired an unusual self-published pictorial diary. Published in 1961 by Mrs. F. Kirk (Bess) Johnson, featuring safari photos of actor, Jimmy Stewart and his wife, Gloria, along with the author and her husband, Fort Worth oil man, F. Kirk Johnson. Leather bound in simulated leopard skin. Good condition.

For more information, stop by our Ridgmar HPB in Fort Worth, TX or call 817-732-4111.

What have you spotted at HPB lately? Tweet us a pic using the #foundHPB hashtag.

Interested in any of these gems? Call the HPB at which they’re located, and the Bibliomaniacs on duty will ship it straight to you (did you know that we can now search our inventory nation-wide and ship books, movies, music & more straight to you? We’re pretty excited about it!)

— Susan

Top 10 Charming Books on Cupcakes

In anticipation of our 40th birthday (July 27, 2012), we’ve got cake on the brain. Better yet, mini cakes. Cupcakes are cheerful lil’ things. Can’t really put my finger on a reason, but they are. And it turns out, other people, or at least publishers, must agree, because there are countless books on the topic of cupcakes!

Part of what makes any cookbook appealing is the appetite-grabbing photography, so, this week, just for fun, I’ve rounded up my selections. Here are the Top 10 Charming Books on Cupcakes…

1. Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans offers up 50 mouthwatering, delicious recipes that are sure to tickle your palate. User-friendly, this simple cookbook also covers supplies, ingredients and successful baking techniques.

2. Bake Me I’m Yours… Cupcake: Over 100 Excuses to Indulge by Joan and Graham Belgrove features 100 ideas for baking, decorating, displaying, serving and consuming cupcakes – the small cake with BIG potential. Sponge cakes, icings and frostings, and ideas for embellishment and display.

3. Cupcakes Year-Round: 50 Recipes for Every Season and Celebration by Sara Neumeier offers a platter of full of delicious recipes for the kids and grown-ups, with recipes organized by season. In addition to recipes for batters, it includes syrups, fillings, and icings.

4. Little Cakes from the Whimsical Bakehouse by Kaye and Liv Hansen is filled with delightful cupcakes, small cakes muffins, and other mini treats. Presenting 60 fabulous new recipes for little decorated cakes and cheesecakes, bundts, cupcakes and more-all in fresh flavor combinations

5. Cupcakes by Susannah Blake features passion fruit butterfly cakes and orange almond cupcakes. You won’t be able to resist whipping up a batch.

6. Cupcakes: Over 80 Delicious Recipes for All Occasions and Tastes by Sue McMahon offers 80 delicious recipes including recipes for traditional cupcakes, fruit-based cupcakes, themed cupcakes, and special-diet cupcakes that include mouthwatering gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free, reduced-fat and reduced-sugar recipes.

7. The Cupcake Deck (Cards) by Elinor Klivans, the author of Cupcakes (see number 1), shows off 25 scrumptious ways to bring smiles faster than a kid can lick the batter off a beater.

8. Sweet Designs: Bake It, Craft It, Style It by Amy Atlas is a showcase of sweet cakes and sugarscapes! You can take on this DIY with the help of this celebrity event planner’s book. Amy gives you tips for dressing up store-bought treats and craft ideas to create a dynamic dessert table for your next party. Presentation is everything!

9. Cupcakes from the Cake Mix Doctor by Anne Byrn offers creative ideas and 135 recipes for tiny, delicious cakes from chocolate ganache to toppings with panache, tempting recipes for children and grown-ups, for special days and everyday, lunch bags, holiday festivities, and an unexpected dinner party dessert.

10. Tempt: Cupcakes to Excite by Betty Saw brings to mind fun and colorful little cakes in attractive cases with beautiful toppings, with a decadent serving of 75 recipes.

Who’s hungry for a cupcake now? Stay tuned for details about our birthday party and fantastic deals happening at your local HPB to celebrate our 40th.

— Meredith