They begin as strangers on the page, slowly coming to life in our minds.
We picture the way they look. We imagine their mannerisms. We form opinions about their personalities.
In return, they tap into our emotions, entertaining us or irritating us, making us laugh or cry or scream or cringe. They teach us something about ourselves. And sometimes, when they're particularly special, they stick around, becoming in some way a part of us that we care about long after we've turned the last page.
In the next few months, four authors will reunite us with four vastly different fictional characters ... old friends we haven't seen for years. You might remember them as a kid coming to terms with his supernatural powers, a single gal infatuated with the idea of love, and a controversy-courting lawyer trying to do the right thing, and a working class music fanatic grasping at success.
We take a look at where these characters have been and offer a sneak peek at where we'll soon find them, including excerpts from each new book.