SKYLIT: Jon McGregor, ”LEAN FALL STAND” w/ Julia Phillips

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on November 27th, 2021

Robert 'Doc' Wright, a veteran of Antarctic surveying, was there on the ice when the worst happened. He holds within him the complete story of that night—but depleted by the disaster, Wright is no longer able to communicate the truth. Instead, in the wake of the catastrophic expedition, he faces the most daunting adventure of his life: learning a whole new way to be in the world. Meanwhile Anna, his wife, must suddenly scramble to navigate the sharp and unexpected contours of life as a caregiver.

From the Booker Prize-longlisted, American Academy of Arts & Letters Award-winning Jon McGregor, this is a novel every bit as mesmerizing as its setting. Tenderly unraveling different notions of heroism through the rippling effects of one extraordinary expedition on an ordinary family, Lean Fall Stand explores the indomitable human impulse to turn our experiences into stories—even when the words may fail us.

In this episode, McGregor discusses his work with Julia Phillips.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: West Moss, ”FLESH & BLOOD” w/ David Ebenbach

Posted in skylight books, book stores, books, Memoir, nonfiction, biography, skylit by skylightbooks on November 26th, 2021
“I drive and say to myself, if I am dying, if this is how I die, then this is how I die.” When N. West Moss finds herself bleeding uncontrollably in the middle of a writing class, she manages to drive herself to the nearest hospital. Doctors are baffled, but eventually a diagnosis—uterine hemangioma—is rendered and a hysterectomy is scheduled. In prose both lyrical and unsparing, Moss takes us along through illness, relapse, and recovery. And as her thoughts turn to her previous struggles with infertility, she reflects on kin and kinship and on what it means to leave a legacy.

Moss’s wise, droll voice and limitless curiosity lift this narrative beyond any narrow focus. Among her interests: yellow fever, good cocktails, the history of New Orleans, and, always, the natural world, including the praying mantis in her sunroom whom she names Claude. And we learn about the inspiring women in Moss’s family—her mother, her grandmother, and her great-grandmother—as she sorts out her feelings that this line will end with her. But Moss discovers that there are ways besides having children to make a mark, and that grief is not a stopping place but a companion that travels along with us through everything, even happiness.

A remarkably honest memoir about heartache and healing, Flesh & Blood opens up a conversation with the millions of women who live with infertility and loss.

 
West is in conversation with David Ebenbach during this episode.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Teresa K. Miller and Amanda Moore

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, skylit by skylightbooks on November 22nd, 2021
Borderline Fortune is a meditation on intangible family inheritance—of unresolved intergenerational conflicts and traumas in particular—set against the backdrop of our planetary inheritance as humans. As species go extinct and glaciers melt, Teresa K. Miller asks what we owe one another and what it means to echo one’s ancestors’ grief and fear. Drawing on her family history, from her great-grandfather’s experience as a schoolteacher on an island in the Bering Strait to her father’s untimely death, as well as her pursuit of regenerative horticulture, Miller seeks through these beautifully crafted poems to awaken from the intergenerational trance and bear witness to our current moment with clarity and attention.
 
Amanda Moore's debut collection of poetry, Requeening (Ecco, Oct. 26, 2021), was selected for the 2020 National Poetry Series by Ocean Vuong. Her poems have appeared in journals and anthologies including Best New Poets, ZYZZYVA, and Mamas and Papas: On the Sublime and Heartbreaking Art of Parenting, and her essays have appeared in The Baltimore Review and Hippocampus Magazine as well as on the University of Arizona Poetry Center's blog. Serving as poetry editor at Women's Voices for Change and a reader at VIDA Review and Bull City Press, Moore is a high school English teacher and lives by the beach in the Outer Sunset neighborhood of San Francisco.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Stephen Van Dyck, ”PEOPLE I‘VE MET FROM THE INTERNET”

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Memoir, nonfiction, LGBTQ, skylit by skylightbooks on November 21st, 2021
Stephen van Dyck's PEOPLE I'VE MET FROM THE INTERNET is a queer reimagining of the coming-of-age narrative set at the dawn of the internet era. In 1997, AOL is first entering suburban homes just as thirteen-year-old Stephen is coming into his sexuality, constructing selves and cruising in the fantasyscape of the internet. Through strange, intimate, and sometimes perilous physical encounters with the hundreds of men he finds there, Stephen explores the pleasures and pains of growing up, contends with his mother's homophobia and early death, and ultimately searches for a way of being in the world. Spanning twelve years, the book takes the form of a very long annotated list, tracking Stephen's journey and the men he meets from adolescence in New Mexico to post-recession adulthood in Los Angeles, creating a multi-dimensional panorama of gay men's lives as he searches for glimpses of utopia in the available world.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Farah Ali, ”PEOPLE WANT TO LIVE” w/ Ahsan Butt

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, skylit by skylightbooks on November 18th, 2021
People Want to Live, Farah Ali’s debut collection, features stories of togetherness and reckless faith in the face of a world that’s built to break us.

Set in Pakistan, these award-winning stories follow people living on the brink of abandonment—in their personal relationships and their place in the world. A mother, coping with the sudden death of her son, uncovers long-buried secrets in his absence. An anguished girl grabs a chance for a life beyond the orphanage walls where she lives, and discovers the price of freedom. A young couple tries to keep their fraught relationship intact as a heat wave engulfs their city. A son returns to visit his aging parents while beset with memories of a troubled childhood. And two thieves find themselves in a situation more precarious by the minute, and more dangerous than their original mission.

 
In this episode, Ali discusses her collection with Ahsan Butt.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Molly Peacock, ”FLOWER DIARY” w/ Donna Bailey Nurse

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, art, biography, skylit by skylightbooks on November 17th, 2021
Molly Peacock uncovers the history of neglected painter Mary Hiester Reid, a trailblazing artist who refused to choose between marriage and a career. Born into a patrician American family in the middle of the nineteenth century, Mary Hiester Reid was determined to be a painter and left behind women's design schools to enter the art world of men. 
 
Peacock uses her poet's skill to create a structurally inventive portrait of this extraordinary woman whom modernism almost swept aside, weaving threads of her own marriage with Hiester Reid's, following the history of empathy and examining how women manage the demands of creativity and domesticity, coping with relationships, stoves, and steamships, too. How do you make room for art when you must go to the market to buy a chicken for dinner? Hiester Reid had her answers, as Peacock gloriously discovers in Flower Diary.
 
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Jan Beatty, ”AMERICAN BASTARD” w/ Elena Karina Byrne

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Memoir, biography, skylit by skylightbooks on November 15th, 2021
American Bastard is a lyrical inquiry into the experience of being a bastard in America. This memoir travels across literal continents--and continents of desire as Jan Beatty finds her birthfather, a Canadian hockey player who's won three Stanley Cups--and her birthmother, a working-class woman from Pittsburgh. This is not the whitewashed story, but the real story, where Beatty writes through complete erasure: loss of name and history, and a culture based on the currency of gratitude as expected payment from the adoptee. American Bastard sandblasts the exaltation of adoption in Western culture and the myth of the "chosen baby." This journey into the relationship of place and body compels and unhinges, with the link between identity and blood history as its driving force. Beatty rescripts the order of things: the horizontal world of the birth table where babies are switched, the complex yard of the body where names and blood shift and revolt, and the actual story into the relationship of place and the insurrection of the body erased. Issues of class and struggle run throughout this book, this narrative river between blood and continents, between work and desire.
 
In this episode, Beatty is in conversation with Elena Karina Byrne.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Mina Seckin, ”FOUR HUMORS” w/ Hilary Leichter

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on November 10th, 2021
Twenty-year-old Sibel thought she had concrete plans for the summer. She would care for her grandmother in Istanbul, visit her father’s grave, and study for the MCAT. Instead, she finds herself watching Turkish soap operas and self-diagnosing her own possible chronic illness with the four humors theory of ancient medicine.
 
Also on Sibel’s mind: her blond American boyfriend who accompanies her to Turkey; her energetic but distraught younger sister; and her devoted grandmother, who, Sibel comes to learn, carries a harrowing secret.
 
Delving into her family’s history, the narrative weaves through periods of political unrest in Turkey, from military coups to the Gezi Park protests. Told with pathos and humor, Sibel’s search for strange and unusual cures is disrupted as she begins to see how she might heal herself through the care of others, including her own family and its long-fractured relationships.
 
In this episode of Skylit, author Mina Seckin discusses her novel Four Humors with Hilary Leichter.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Mansoor Adayfi, ”DON‘T FORGET US HERE” w/ Antonio Aiello

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Memoir, nonfiction, biography, skylit by skylightbooks on November 9th, 2021
At the age of 18, Mansoor Adayfi left his home in Yemen for a cultural mission to Afghanistan. He never returned. Kidnapped by warlords and then sold to the US after 9/11, he was disappeared to Guantánamo Bay, where he spent the next 14 years as Detainee #441.
Don't Forget Us Here tells two coming-of-age stories in parallel: a makeshift island outpost becoming the world's most notorious prison and an innocent young man emerging from its darkness. Arriving as a stubborn teenager, Mansoor survived the camp's infamous interrogation program and became a feared and hardened resistance fighter leading prison riots and hunger strikes. With time though, he grew into the man nicknamed "Smiley Troublemaker": a student, writer, advocate, and historian. While at Guantánamo, he wrote a series of manuscripts he sent as letters to his attorneys, which he then transformed into this vital chronicle, in collaboration with award-winning writer Antonio Aiello. With unexpected warmth and empathy, Mansoor unwinds a narrative of fighting for hope and survival in unimaginable circumstances, illuminating the limitlessness of the human spirit. 
 
In this episode of Skylit, Adayfi is in conversation with Antonio Aiello.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Jake Jabbour, ”TRAINING TO BE MYSELF”

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Memoir, biography, skylit by skylightbooks on November 5th, 2021
At thirty-three, comedian and educator Jake Jabbour found himself living alone after a breakup with his girlfriend and burying his grandpa. His most impactful relationships ended, stripping from him his identities as a roommate, boyfriend, and grandson. Hoping to discover who he was when he wasn't himself, Jake boarded an Amtrak train with his comedy partner to perform live improv across the country, from Los Angeles to New York, examining the trials, tragedies, and triumphs of his past that landed him alone in the most crowded cities in the country.

 

In the lineage of Chuck Klosterman's Killing Yourself to Live and John Steinbeck's Travels with Charley, Training to Be Myself chronicles Jabbour's cross-country travels with an eye trained towards relationships and culture, searching for clues and connections with others that might shine a light on his own identity. Along the way, Jake lays bare his thoughts on grief, nostalgia, family, failure, comedy, education, relationships, culture, and self-acceptance.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Erin Osmon, ”JOHN PRINE (33 1/3)” w/ Steven Hyden

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, nonfiction, music, art, skylit by skylightbooks on November 3rd, 2021
He is known as the Mark Twain of American songwriting, a man who transformed the everyday happenings of regular people into plainly profound statements on war, industrialization, religion, and the human condition. Marking the 50th anniversary of the album's release, John Prine chronicles the legendary singer-songwriter's Middle American provenance, and his remarkable ascent from singing mailman to celebrated son of Chicago."Illegal Smile," "Hello in There," "Sam Stone," "Paradise," "Your Flag Decal Won't Get You Into Heaven Anymore," "Far from Me," "Donald and Lydia," and "Angel from Montgomery" are considered standards in the American Songbook, covered by legions of Prine's peers and admirers. Through original interviews, exhaustive research, and incisive commentary, author Erin Osmon paints an in-depth portrait of the people, places, and experiences that inspired Prine's landmark debut.
 
Erin discusses her entry in the 33 1/3 series with music author/journalist Steven Hyden.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Melissa Lozada-Oliva, ”DREAMING OF YOU”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on November 1st, 2021
Melissa Lozada-Oliva's Dreaming of You is an absurd yet heartfelt examination of celebrity worship.
 
A young Latinx poet grappling with loneliness and heartache decides one day to bring Tejano pop star Selena Quintanilla back to life. The séance kicks off an uncanny trip narrated by a Greek chorus of gossiping spirits as she journeys through a dead celebrity prom, encounters her shadow self, and performs karaoke in hell.
 
In visceral poems embodying millennial angst, paragraph-long conversations overheard at her local coffeeshop, and unhinged Twitter rants, Lozada-Oliva reveals an eerie, sometimes gruesome, yet moving love story.
 
Playfully morbid and profoundly candid, an interrogation of Latinidad, womanhood, obsession, and disillusionment, Dreaming of You grapples with the cost of being seen for your truest self.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Sebastian Moya, ”BLUETO”

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, latinx, skylit by skylightbooks on October 29th, 2021
Poet Sebastian Moya reads from and discusses his upcoming poetry collection BlueTo with Skylight's Lance Morgan.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Beth Gilstrap, ”DEADHEADING” w/ Steph Post

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, skylit by skylightbooks on October 27th, 2021
Irrevocably tied to the Carolinas, Deadheading and Other Stories tells tales of the woebegone, their obsessions with decay, and the haunting ache of the region itself—the land of the dwindling pines, the isolation inherent in the mountains and foothills, and the loneliness of boomtowns. Predominantly working-class women challenge the status quo by rejecting any lingering expectations or romantic notions of Southern femininity. Small businesses are failing. Factories are closing. Money is tight. The threat of violence lingers for women and girls. Through their collective grief, heartache, and unsettling circumstances, many of these characters become feral and hell-bent on survival. Beth Gilstrap’s prose teems with wildness and lyricism, showing the Southern gothic tradition of storytelling is alive and feverishly unwell in the twenty-first century.
 
Gilstrap is in conversation with author Steph Post.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Jonathan Alexander, ”STROKE BOOK”/”BULLIED” w/ Julietta Singh

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Memoir, essays, LGBTQ, skylit by skylightbooks on October 25th, 2021
CONTENT WARNING: This episode contains discussions of homophobia and child abuse. 
 
Jonathan Alexander is a writer living in Southern California where he is Chancellor’s Professor of English at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author, co-author, or editor of twenty-one books. His cultural journalism has been widely published, especially in the Los Angeles Review of Books for which he is the Young Adult editor, where founding editor Tom Lutz called him one of “our finest essayists.” 
 
In this episode, Alexander discusses his two new works, Stroke Book and Bullied, both published in 2021. He is in conversation with Julietta Singh, author three books, most recently The Breaks.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, Natalie Freeman, & Michael Kowaleski.

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.





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