Scary Good Books – Why We Enjoy Getting Scared

Every year, October brings wind, falling leaves, and a new round of scary books and movies. Nothing pairs so well with windy nights as a spine-tingling thriller. Considering that no one would ever want to live through the events in our favorite thriller, why do we enjoy getting scared? Horror novelist Lou Morgan argues that horror stories and thrillers give us “safe place for a stern truth.”¹ We have to face our own fears in them, and become a little more able to overcome real life terrors. Prominent thinker G. K. Chesterton in…continue reading →

300 Years of Gothic Novels

2017 marks the 300th birthday of novelist, Horace Walpole, who wrote the very first Gothic novel. The Castle of Otranto was published in 1764 and featured a series of terrible events set in a medieval castle which eventually “comes to supernatural life until villainy is defeated.”¹ Filled with ghosts, secret passages, and murder, The Castle of Otranto was a popular hit and critically significant for how the atmosphere, even the castle itself, reflected the inner turmoil of the main character Manfred. Since then, elements of the Gothic novel like haunted houses, supernatural environments,…continue reading →

Hispanic Heritage Month – Cooking Up Culture

Pabellón, a Venezuelan dish made of shredded beef, rice, and black beans with sugar on top. They say that to understand a culture, you have to eat its cuisine. As we continue celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, we wanted to present a selection of different Hispanic cuisines. After all, many cultures can be categorized as "Hispanic" and they all have very different food. For example, traditional Mexican tacos are not common in Venezuela. Venezuela shares their love for arepas with Colombia, Guyana, and Caribbean nations but arepas are uncommon in Andean cultures. Peru's national…continue reading →

Hispanic Heritage Month

Each September, Hispanic-Americans across the country celebrate their Hispanic heritage. Whether born abroad or in the U.S., Hispanic Americans have added to the depth and richness of American culture. Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15 to October 15 partly because many Independence Day celebrations from different Hispanic countries occur during that time. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Chile all celebrate their national independence during this time-frame. In contemporary literature, Hispanic authors like Juan Felipe Herrera, Alberto Ríos, and Sandra Cisneros express their love for Hispanic culture while also…continue reading →

Where Is It? Finding Books at the JTCC Library

Picture courtesy of Aimee-Leigh Bean Week 1 is done and Week 2 is halfway through. As you start getting familiar with how to use our library catalog, you may wonder “how do I find books on the shelf?” The John Tyler library uses the Library of Congress classification system. LOC uses a combination of letters and numbers to give the location on the shelf. The general topics within Library of Congress are very broad—the G section covers geography, oceanography, anthropology, sports, and folklore! That’s why there are divisions within each section. In general,…continue reading →