Houston Matters

Happiness for Beginners: Looking to Nature to Rebuild a Life

Posted on · Houston author Katherine Center has written a new novel called Happiness for Beginners. It’s about a woman whose marriage falls apart and to help her recover her younger brother convinces her to go on a wilderness survival trip. And, of course, things don’t go well. Many of Center’s novels start in a similar way – […]

Houston Matters

Run Brother Run: Brother’s Murder Fuels Houston Attorney’s Legal Passion

Posted on · Houston attorney David Berg’s brother, Alan, was murdered in 1968 by Charles Harrelson, known hit man and father of Woody Harrelson. Despite an eyewitness — Harrelson’s girlfriend — who agreed to testify, Harrelson was acquitted. Now, nearly 50 years later, David Berg has written Run, Brother, Run, a memoir about his family, his brother, his […]

Houston Matters

What Happens When Two Houstonians Take a Motorhome Trip Through Central America?

Posted on · If you’re going to travel through Central America, why not by motorhome? That’s what one Houston couple decided to do in 2003. John and Harriet Halkyard wrote a book about their experience called 99 Days to Panama, An Exploration of Central America by Motorhome. They chronicled their journey and offer traveling advice for those who […]

Houston Matters

What’s the Connection Between Good Storytelling and Puzzles?

Posted on · What makes a story compelling? Is it the plot? The characters? The thematic subtext? A clear beginning, middle and end? Conflict and resolution? There are lots of things a writer might think about while crafting a story – a lot that he or she may want to accomplish while telling the tale. According to creative […]

Houston Matters

Lone Star Nation: How a Changing Texas Could Change America

Posted on · In his new book Lone Star Nation: How Texas Will Transform America, Richard Parker examines how his native Texas has changed dramatically in the last 30 years – and how it’s in the midst of change right now and will continue to be so in the years to come. He notes how the suburbs of Houston in […]

Houston Matters

Run Brother Run: Brother’s Murder Fuels Houston Attorney’s Legal Passion

Posted on · Houston attorney David Berg’s brother, Alan, was murdered in 1968 by Charles Harrelson, known hit man and father of Woody Harrelson. Despite an eyewitness — Harrelson’s girlfriend — who agreed to testify, Harrelson was acquitted. Now, nearly 50 years later, David Berg has written Run, Brother, Run, a memoir about his family, his brother, his […]

Houston Matters

How to Insulate Your Teenager From Modern Stressors

Posted on · Our summer reading series continues with Judith Widener Muir, author of Live Wires: Neuro-Parenting to Ignite Your Teen’s Brain. Her book explains what makes the teenage brain unique and versatile and how to insulate today’s teens from the stresses of “college frenzy, achievement mania and media explosion.” She also explains how versatile and adaptive the teenage […]

Houston Matters

How a Local English Teacher Channels Her Inner Teenager in Order to Write Young-Adult Fiction

Posted on · As our summer reading series continues, we talk with Jennifer Mathieu, a local high school English teacher, and the author of a new young adult novel entitled The Truth About Alice. We discuss the impact her day job has on her ability to write for and about teenagers and how she channels her inner teenager in order […]

Houston Matters

Descendant of Former Slave Owners Seeks Out Descendants of Their Former Slaves

Posted on · As a kid, Houston Chronicle business columnist Chris Tomlinson was fascinated by family stories of his great-grandfather coming to Texas as a pioneering settler of the American West. But as he grew older, he started to understand the story wasn’t as glorious as he thought — his ancestors were slaveholders. Just five years ago, Tomlinson […]

Houston Matters

How the CCC Shaped Some of Texas’ Top Outdoor Destinations

Posted on · Throughout the summer, Houston Matters is dedicating time each week to books about Greater Houston, set in Greater Houston, or written or edited by Houstonians. Our summer series continues with Cynthia Brandimarte, the author of Texas State Parks and the CCC: The Legacy of the Civilian Conservation Corps. She talks about the role the CCC, a […]

Houston Matters

The Wineslinger Chronicles: The Stories Behind Texas Wine

Posted on · Throughout the summer, Houston Matters has been dedicating time each week to books about Greater Houston, set in Greater Houston, or written or edited by Houstonians. Our summer reading series continues today with Russell Kane. He writes a blog called Vintage Texas about Texas wine, and he’s the author of the book The Wineslinger Chronicles. More: Russell […]

Houston Matters

Book Revives the Work of One of the Earliest Known African-American Female Novelists

Posted on · Lillian B. Jones Horace was a Texas native who wrote the earliest published novel by a black woman from Texas. It was called “Five Generations Hence” a back-to-Africa novel published in 1916. Scholar  Karen Kossie-Chernyshev of Texas Southern University has republished an annotated version of “Five Generations Hence” and expanded on the life of Lillian Jones Horace […]