Town Square

A Modern Texas Family Saga: Novelist Justin Deabler Talks About “Lone Stars” Set In Houston

Former Houstonian Justin Deabler comes “home” to talk about his debut novel, “Lone Stars.” Plus, infectious disease expert Dr. Jill Weatherhead updates us on the newly approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Courtesy of St. Martin's Press
“Lone Star” is the debut novel by Justin Deabler


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Town Square with Ernie Manouse airs at 3 p.m. CT. Tune in on 88.7FM, listen online or subscribe to the podcast. Join the discussion at 888-486-9677, or @townsquaretalk.

When you look back on your life, how do you remember your story?

Is it set from the moments you've committed to memory, or do you revisit and revise it as you grow and mature?

How do we come to the story of who we are, and how does that inform who we become?

Even though life may take you to different places, do you ever really leave your hometown behind?

These are just some of the topics that author Justin Deabler shares today – issues he explores in his debut novel, "Lone Stars."

The former Texan-turned-New York attorney joins us to talk about growing up in Houston and his journey as a writer.

And, with the new approval of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, Dr. Jill Weatherhead also joins us on the second half of the show to answer listeners’ COVID-19 vaccine questions.


Justin Deabler:

  • Author of the novel, "Lone Stars," published by St. Martin's Press
  • Virtual author event with Justin Deabler on Mon., Mar. 1, 7pm at Blue Willow Bookshop. Free with registration.

Dr. Jill Weatherhead:

  • Assistant Professor in Tropical Medicine and in Infectious Disease at Baylor College of Medicine

Houston Public Media reporter Matt Harab also joins Ernie with COVID updates and headlines, including:

  • The state health department says that the three FEMA vaccination sites in Texas are scheduled to receive 24,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine tomorrow.
  • According to Mayor Sylvester Turner, all of the state's allotment of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine coming to Houston are going to the Houston FEMA Site for now.
  • Mayor Turner says our city's allotment will be 6,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. That's in addition to the 9,000 doses of Moderna for this week.
  • Good news on our positivity rate: The City's Health Department is reporting that it's all the way down to 11.8%.
  • For context, the percent of people testing positive for COVID was over 20% coming off the holiday surge and at one point approaching 30% over the summer.
  • Dr. David Persse, the City’s health authority, had some bad news: The amount of variants that the City's Health Department is detecting has increased.
  • Right now, the UK variant is taking over as the most dominant of the variants, and they're detecting its presence through the city's waste water or in regular PCR COVID-19 tests from the City' testing sites.

Town Square with Ernie Manouse is a gathering space for the community to come together and discuss the day’s most important and pressing issues.

Audio from today's show will be available after 5 p.m. CT. We also offer a free podcast here, on iTunes, and other apps.

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This article is part of the Town Square with Ernie Manouse podcast

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Catherine Lu

Catherine Lu

Senior Content Producer & Announcer

While growing up in Chicago and Houston, Catherine’s love for art, music and creative writing was influenced by her teachers and parents. She was once concertmaster of the Clear Lake High School Orchestra and a four-time violinist of the Texas All-State Symphony. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Catherine...

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