Archive for fiction

Lit Angeles, Ep. 2: ”L.A. WOMAN” w/ Molly Lambert

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Lit Angeles by skylightbooks on June 21st, 2022
For the second episode of Lit Angeles, Emily and Alena dive deep into the the City of Angels painted by Eve Babitz in her 1982 classic L.A. Woman. They discuss what makes the novel so special from a stylistic standpoint. Later, they're joined by Molly Lambert, writer and host of the new podcast HeidiWorld, to talk how writing about L.A.'s party culture from a woman's perspective makes a huge difference, the cultural peculiarities of Los Angeles, and most importantly: what is an L.A. Woman??? 
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Produced by Emily VanKoughnett, Alena Saunders & Michael Kowaleski.

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




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Robbie Couch, ”BLAINE FOR THE WIN” w/ Margot Wood

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Y/A, fiction, LGBTQ, live on crowdcast, romance by skylightbooks on June 14th, 2022
In Blaine for the Winhigh school junior Blaine Bowers has it all—the perfect boyfriend, a pretty sweet gig as a muralist for local Windy City businesses, a loving family, and awesome, talented friends. And he is absolutely, 100% positive that aforementioned perfect boyfriend—senior student council president and Mr. Popular of Wicker West High School, Joey—is going to invite Blaine to spend spring break with his family in beautiful, sunny Cabo San Lucas.

Except Joey breaks up with him instead. In public. On their one-year anniversary.

Because, according to Joey, Blaine is too goofy, too flighty, too…unserious. And if Joey wants to go far in life, he needs to start dating more serious guys. Guys like Zach Chesterton.

Determined to prove that Blaine can be what Joey wants, Blaine decides to enter the running to become his successor (and beat out Joey’s new boyfriend, Zach) as senior student council president.

But is he willing to sacrifice everything he loves about himself to do it?

 
Join us for this conversation between Robbie Couch and Margot Wood, recorded live on our Crowdcast on April 13, 2022.
 
Moderated by Nat Freeman.
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Produced by Nat Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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.




Lit Angeles, Ep. 1: ”THE BIG SLEEP” w/ Jonathan Ames

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, mystery, novels, Lit Angeles by skylightbooks on June 7th, 2022

Join us for a brand new series in the Skylight arsenal, Lit Angeles! In this soon-to-be-regular segment, our hosts Emily VanKoughnett and Alena Saunders take a deep dive into Angeleno's rich literary history, one book at a time, exploring select titles that they believe illustrate the City of Angels with depth and texture. 

In the first episode, they tackle Raymond Chandler's proto-noir detective classic, The Big Sleep, in particular Chandler's timeless anti-authoritarian streak and his all-time protagonist, Phillip Marlowe. They're joined by esteemed author and screenwriter Jonathan Ames (A Man Named DollYou Were Never Really Here), who talks about his connection to Chandler's work and the future of the noir tradition.

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Produced by Emily VanKoughnett, Alena Saunders & Michael Kowaleski.

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




SKYLIT: Naheed Phiroze Patel, ”MIRROR MADE OF RAIN” w/ Vikram Chandra

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on May 23rd, 2022
Despite an embarrassing, alcoholic mother, Noomi Wadia is loathe to change her own hard-partying ways simply because it's what's expected in Kamalpur high society. As her peers begin to marry and her social obligations become more fraught, she finds herself under constant scrutiny at summer parties of the city's upper crust.

 

With her options in her hometown growing increasingly limited, Noomi leaves for Mumbai and quickly becomes a successful journalist. There she falls in love with Veer, who appreciates her for exactly who she is. When Noomi and Veer decide to marry, Noomi must observe a host of patriarchal wedding rituals at the behest of her new in-laws, whose cultural customs deviate from her own. Soon, Noomi realizes that her worst fears have come to pass--she is trapped in the same cycle of self-destructiveness as her mother, and she must battle her impulses or risk losing it all.

 

A riveting exploration of class and tradition in contemporary India, Noomi is as quick-witted as she is quick-tempered. At times funny and tragic, taking place over many years of Noomi's life, Naheed Phiroze Patel's exhilarating debut novel, Mirror Made of Rain, shows how society encourages us to see ourselves through the eyes of others.

 
Patel is joined in conversation by fellow writer Vikram Chandra.
 
Hosted by Mike Jeffries.
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Produced by Nat Freeman, Lance Morgan, & Michael Kowaleski.

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




SKYLIT: Sonora Reyes, ”THE LESBIANA’S GUIDE TO CATHOLIC SCHOOL”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, LGBTQ, novels, latinx, skylit by skylightbooks on May 18th, 2022

Sixteen-year-old Yamilet Flores prefers to be known for her killer eyeliner, not for being one of the only Mexican kids at her new, mostly white, very rich Catholic school. But at least here no one knows she’s gay, and Yami intends to keep it that way. 

After being outed by her crush and ex-best friend before transferring to Slayton Catholic, Yami has new priorities: keep her brother out of trouble, make her mom proud, and, most importantly, don’t fall in love. Granted, she’s never been great at any of those things, but that’s a problem for Future Yami. 

The thing is, it’s hard to fake being straight when Bo, the only openly queer girl at school, is so annoyingly perfect. And smart. And talented. And cute. So cute. Either way, Yami isn’t going to make the same mistake again. If word got back to her mom, she could face a lot worse than rejection. So she’ll have to start asking, WWSGD: What would a straight girl do? 

Told in a captivating voice that is by turns hilarious, vulnerable, and searingly honest, The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School explores the joys and heartaches of living your full truth out loud.

Join us for a conversation with author Sonora Reyes as they discuss their new book with Skylight's Nat Freeman.

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Produced by Nat Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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.




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Julio Anta, ”HOME” w/ Pornsak Pichetshote

After being separated from his mother at the US border, a young Guatemalan immigrant must learn to harness emerging superhuman abilities while being hunted by the Federal Government.
 
Join us for a conversation between Home writer Julio Anta and Pornsak Pichetshote, recorded live on our Crowdcast channel on February 22, 2022.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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.




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Catriona Ward, ”SUNDIAL” w/ Caroline Kepnes

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, horror, novels, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on May 13th, 2022
All Rob wanted was a normal life. She almost got it, too: a husband, two kids, a nice house in the suburbs. But Rob fears for her oldest daughter, Callie, who collects tiny bones and whispers to imaginary friends. Rob sees a darkness in Callie, one that reminds her too much of the family she left behind.

She decides to take Callie back to her childhood home, to Sundial, deep in the Mojave Desert. And there she will have to make a terrible choice.

Callie is worried about her mother. Rob has begun to look at her strangely, and speaks of past secrets. And Callie fears that only one of them will leave Sundial alive…

The mother and daughter embark on a dark, desert journey to the past in the hopes of redeeming their future.

 
Join us for a conversation between author Catriona Ward and Caroline Kepnes, recorded live on our Crowdcast channel on March 18, 2022.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Jarred McGinnis, ”THE COWARD”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on May 10th, 2022
Join us for a conversation with author Jarred McGinnis as he discusses disabled representation in literature, the seperation between auto fiction and memoir, and his new novel, The Coward.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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.




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Sara Gran, ”THE BOOK OF THE MOST PRECIOUS SUBSTANCE” w/ Liberty Hardy

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, erotica, novels, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on May 6th, 2022
After a tragedy too painful to bear, former novelist Lily Albrecht has resigned herself to a dull, sexless life as a rare book dealer. Until she gets a lead on a book that just might turn everything around. The Book of the Most Precious Substance is a 17th century manual on sex magic, rumored to be the most powerful occult book ever written--if it really exists at all. And some of the wealthiest people in the world are willing to pay Lily a fortune to find it-if she can. Her search for the book takes her from New York to New Orleans to Munich to Paris, searching the dark corners of power where the world's wealthiest people use black magic to fulfill their desires. Will Lily fulfill her own desires, and join them? Or will she lose it all searching for a ghost? The Book of the Most Precious Substance is an addictive erotic thriller about the lengths we'll go to get what we need-and what we want.
 
Join us for a conversation between author Sara Gran and Liberty Hardy, recorded live on our Crowdcast channel on February 25, 2022.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Kelly Barnhill, ”WHEN WOMEN WERE DRAGONS”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Fantasy, fiction, Feminism, Short Stories, novels by skylightbooks on May 4th, 2022
Join us for a conversation with Kelly Barnhill, as she discusses the lasting importance of Christine Blasey Ford, how she turned joy into destruction, and her new novel, When Women Were Dragons.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Claire Kohda, ”WOMAN, EATING”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, horror, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on April 30th, 2022

Lydia is hungry. She's always wanted to try Japanese food. Sashimi, ramen, onigiri with sour plum stuffed inside - the food her Japanese father liked to eat. And then there is bubble tea and iced-coffee, ice cream and cake, and foraged herbs and plants, and the vegetables grown by the other young artists at the London studio space she is secretly squatting in. But, Lydia can't eat any of these things. Her body doesn't work like those of other people. The only thing she can digest is blood, and it turns out that sourcing fresh pigs' blood in London - where she is living away from her vampire mother for the first time - is much more difficult than she'd anticipated.

Then there are the humans - the other artists at the studio space, the people at the gallery she interns at, the strange men that follow her after dark, and Ben, a boyish, goofy-grinned artist she is developing feelings for. Lydia knows that they are her natural prey, but she can't bring herself to feed on them. In her windowless studio, where she paints and studies the work of other artists, binge-watches Buffy the Vampire Slayer and videos of people eating food on YouTube and Instagram, Lydia considers her place in the world. She has many of the things humans wish for - perpetual youth, near-invulnerability, immortality – but she is miserable; she is lonely; and she is hungry - always hungry.

As Lydia develops as a woman and an artist, she will learn that she must reconcile the conflicts within her - between her demon and human sides, her mixed ethnic heritage, and her relationship with food, and, in turn, humans - if she is to find a way to exist in the world. Before any of this, however, she must eat.

Woman, Eating author Claire Kohda discusses her debut novel with Skylight's Nat Freeman.

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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Adam Frost, ”THE DAMNED LOVELY”

Posted in skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on April 29th, 2022

"She wasn't pretty but she was ours..." Sandwiched between seedy businesses in the scorching east LA suburb of Glendale, The Damned Lovely dive bar is as scarred as its regulars: ex-cops, misfits and loners. And for Sam Goss, it's a refuge from the promising life he's walked away from, a place to write and a hole to hide in.

But when a beautiful and mysterious new patron to the bar turns up murdered, Sam can't stop himself from getting involved. Despite their fleeting interaction, or perhaps because of it, something about her ghost won't let go...

Armed with the playbook from the burned-out ex-cops, Sam challenges the police's theory on the killing, butting heads with hardened detectives and asking questions nobody wants to answer. As his obsession takes hold so does his sense of purpose-as if uncovering the truth about the killer might heal some part of his own broken life. But the chase sets him on a collision course with a crooked charity, violent fundamentalists, corrupt cops, brazen embezzlers and someone dangerously close to home-all who want to make sure the truth never comes out.
 
Author Adam Frost discusses his new novel in this episode.
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Fernanda Melchor, ”PARADAIS” w/ Sophie Hughes

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, translated, novels, Mexico, skylit by skylightbooks on April 26th, 2022
Inside a luxury housing complex, two misfit teenagers sneak around and get drunk. Franco Andrade, lonely, overweight, and addicted to porn, obsessively fantasizes about seducing his neighbor—an attractive married woman and mother—while Polo dreams about quitting his grueling job as a gardener within the gated community and fleeing his overbearing mother and their narco-controlled village. Each facing the impossibility of getting what he thinks he deserves, Franco and Polo hatch a mindless and macabre scheme.

Written in a chilling torrent of prose by one of our most thrilling new writers, Paradais explores the explosive fragility of Mexican society—with its racist, classist, hyperviolent tendencies—and how the myths, desires, and hardships of teenagers can tear life apart at the seams.

Author Fernanda Melchor discusses their new novel with translator Sophie Hughes.

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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Lisa Bird-Wilson, ”PROBABLY RUBY”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, native authors, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on April 6th, 2022
This is the story of a woman in search of herself, in every sense. When we first meet Ruby, a Métis woman in her thirties, her life is spinning out of control. She’s angling to sleep with her counselor while also rekindling an old relationship she knows will only bring more heartache. But as we soon learn, Ruby’s story is far more complex than even she can imagine.

Given up for adoption as an infant, Ruby is raised by a white couple who understand little of her Indigenous heritage. This is the great mystery that hovers over Ruby’s life—who her people are and how to reconcile what is missing. As the novel spans time and multiple points of view, we meet the people connected to Ruby: her birth parents and grandparents; her adoptive parents; the men and women Ruby has been romantically involved with; a beloved uncle; and Ruby’s children. Taken together, these characters form a kaleidoscope of stories, giving Ruby’s life dignity and meaning.

Probably Ruby is a dazzling novel about a bold, unapologetic woman taking control of her life and story, and marks the debut of a major new voice in Indigenous fiction.

 
Author Lisa Bird-Wilson is also the director of the Gabriel Dumont Institute. The cover art for Probably Ruby is by Métis artist Christi Belcourt.
 
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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: Juneau Black, ”A SHADY HOLLOW MYSTERY”

Posted in literature, skylight books, book stores, books, Y/A, Young Adult, fiction, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on March 28th, 2022
Reporter Vera Vixen is a relative newcomer to Shady Hollow. The fox has a nose for news, so when she catches wind that the death might be a murder, she resolves to get to the bottom of the case, no matter where it leads. As she stirs up still waters, the fox exposes more than one mystery, and discovers that additional lives are in jeopardy.
 
Vera finds more to this town than she ever suspected. It seems someone in the Hollow will do anything to keep her from solving the murder, and soon it will take all of Vera’s cunning and quickness to crack the case.
 
Join us for this conversation with Juneau Black, the pen name of authors Jocelyn Cole and Sharon Nagel, for this discussion on their Shady Hollow book series!
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Produced by Natalie Freeman, Lance Morgan, & 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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