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People have been working on our plumbing for almost two weeks now. We’ve lost water, lost the shower, and yesterday lost air conditioning. Eric is leaving the country Friday for two months. I’m finalizing exams, grades, and preparing for the closing ceremony Friday. It’s been busy, so I’ll throw a couple of cool links up here and show you what I’m interested in right now, but expect more from this week next Wednesday, because there’s definitely more cool stuff happening than what you’re seeing here right now!

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WHAT YOU MAY WANT TO ADD TO YOUR WISH LIST:

“A Face in the Crowd” will be a collaboration between Stephen King and Stewart O’Nan released on August 21. If I’m ever going to get through all his stuff, Mr. King is really going to have to slow it down.

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If you liked The Hunger Games, here’s what to do about it.

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Just recommended Sorry Please Thank You to a friend!

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J.A. Konrath’s blog alerted me to 50 Shades of Alice in Wonderland. This is not a joke. Look at the cover and decide from there whether or not you want to proceed.

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Here’s an interview with friend Jonathan Luna on his upcoming (and first) solo project, Star Bright and the Looking Glass.

I kind of surprised myself with the decision to make a picture book. After “The Sword” ended, I took a two-year sabbatical, but I was still creating. I played with photography and film, and I learned how to paint with oil, acrylic and watercolor. For the past decade I’ve wanted to make an art book — which I still might do — but as I got into it, I questioned its meaningfulness. I realized it was missing the story element I was used to working with in comics. So I decided to do a fairy-tale picture book. I’ve been working on “Star Bright and the Looking Glass” since December 2011.

There’s definitely been a certain kind of imagery in my head I’ve been dying to put on paper. I’ve been into pop surrealism for many years, so I wanted to incorporate that kind of art into my new work. I wanted it to be ethereal and a little dark. That may not completely come across in the work, but it’s at least inspired by it. Also, the theme of beauty runs throughout my other works with Joshua, and it’s central in this book. But, ultimately, this is a story about friendship.

Also, I don’t think I’m going to call “Star Bright and the Looking Glass” a “storybook.” The term implies it’s more for children. I’m hoping anyone of any age will read it.

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WHAT I ADDED TO MY WISH LIST:

Iris Vegan, a young, impoverished graduate student from the Midwest, finds herself entangled with four powerful but threatening characters as she tries to adjust to life in New York City. Mr. Morning, an inscrutable urban recluse, employs Iris to tape-record verbal descriptions of objects that belonged to a murder victim. George, a photographer, takes an eerie portrait of Iris, which then acquires a strange life of its own, appearing and disappearing without warning around the city. After a series of blinding migraines, Iris ends up in a hospital room with Mrs. O., a woman who has lost her mind and memory to a stroke, but who nevertheless retains both the strength and energy to torment her fellow patient. And finally, there is Professor Rose, Iris’s teacher and eventually her lover. While working with him on the translation of a German novella called The Brutal Boy, she discovers in its protagonist, Klaus, a vehicle for her own transformation and ventures out into the city again–this time dressed as a man.

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When orphaned Daiyu leaves her home in the provinces to take shelter with her cousins in the Capital, she is drawn into a world of opulent splendor, presided over by the ruthless, scheming Xifeng and the prim, repressed Baochai. As she learns the secrets behind their glittering façades, she finds herself entangled in a web of intrigue and hidden passions, reaching from the petty gossip of the servants’ quarters all the way to the Imperial Palace. When a political coup overthrows the emperor and plunges the once-mighty family into grinding poverty, each woman must choose between love and duty, friendship and survival.
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DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES…

Except to Harry Keogh, Necroscope. And what they tell him is horrifying.

In the Balkan mountains of Rumania, a terrible evil is growing. Long buried in hallowed ground, bound by earth and silver, the master vampire schemes and plots. Trapped in unlife, neither dead nor living, Thibor Ferenczy hungers for freedom and revenge.

The vampire’s human tool is Boris Dragosani, part of a super-secret Soviet spy agency. Dragosani is an avid pupil, eager to plumb the depthless evil of the vampire’s mind. Ferenczy teaches Dragosani the awful skills of the necromancer, gives him the ability to rip secrets from the mind and bodies of the dead.

Dragosani works not for Ferenczy’s freedom but world domination. he will rule the world with knowledge raped from the dead.

His only opponent: Harry Koegh, champion of the dead and the living.

To protect Harry, the dead will do anything–even rise from their graves!

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Narrated by a one-handed juggler who moonlights as a drug trafficker, a talented young boy who longs to escape the shadow of his abusive father, and a police inspector whose overzealous efforts to solve a murder result in a series of calamitous missteps, Jonah Man explores the dark side of life behind the curtain, where artists resort to the most extreme measures—including drug dealing, self-mutilation, even murder—to prolong their time in the limelight. Resurrecting the lost language of vaudeville—a “Jonah Man” was a performer who, despite his best efforts, had stalled in his career—Jonah Man is a gripping portrait of people torn between their greatest hopes and fears, while trying to keep reality at bay.
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Lance has always known he was gay, but he’s never had a real boyfriend. Sergio is bisexual, but his only real relationship was with a girl. When the two of them meet, they have an instant connection–but will it be enough to overcome their differences?