Archive for literature

LIVE ON CROWDCAST: “SPECULATIVE LOS ANGELES”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, anthology, sci-fi, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on March 5th, 2021

As an incubator of the future, Los Angeles has long mesmerized writers from Aldous Huxley to Octavia E. Butler. With its natural disasters, Hollywood artifice, staggering wealth and poverty, and urban sprawl, one can argue that Los Angeles is already so weird, surreal, irrational, and mythic that any fiction emerging from this place should be considered speculative. So, bestselling author Denise Hamilton commissioned fourteen stories (including one of her own) and did exactly that. In Speculative Los Angeles, some of the city’s most prophetic and diverse voices reimagine the metropolis in very different ways.

In these pages, you’ll encounter twenty-first-century changelings, dirigibles plying the suburban skies, black holes and jacaranda men lurking in deep suburbia, beachfront property in Century City, walled-off canyons and coastlines reserved for the wealthy, psychic death cults, robot nursemaids, and an alternate LA where Spanish land grants never gave way to urbanization.

As with our city-based Akashic Noir Series, each story in Speculative Los Angeles is set in a distinct neighborhood filled with local color, landmarks, and flavor. Since the best speculative fiction provides a wormhole into other worlds while also commenting on our own, that is exactly what you’ll find here.

Hamilton is joined in conversation by Alex Espinoza and Aimee Bender.
 
This episode was recorded on February 15, 2021 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
 
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Lauren Oyler, “FAKE ACCOUNTS” w/ Naomi Fry

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on March 1st, 2021

On the eve of Donald Trump's inauguration, a young woman snoops through her boyfriend's phone and makes a startling discovery: he's an anonymous internet conspiracy theorist, and a popular one at that. Already fluent in internet fakery, irony, and outrage, she's not exactly shocked by the revelation. Actually, she's relieved--he was always a little distant--and she plots to end their floundering relationship while on a trip to the Women's March in DC. But this is only the first in a series of bizarre twists that expose a world whose truths are shaped by online lies.

Suddenly left with no reason to stay in New York and increasingly alienated from her friends and colleagues, our unnamed narrator flees to Berlin, embarking on her own cycles of manipulation in the deceptive spaces of her daily life, from dating apps to expat meetups, open-plan offices to bureaucratic waiting rooms. She begins to think she can't trust anyone--shouldn't the feeling be mutual?

Narrated with seductive confidence and subversive wit, Fake Accounts challenges the way current conversations about the self and community, delusions and gaslighting, and fiction and reality play out in the internet age.

Author Lauren Oyler is in conversation with The New Yorker's Naomi Fry.
 
This episode was recorded on February 9, 2021 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
 
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Melissa Broder, “MILK FED” w/ ryan o’connell

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels, skylit, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on February 24th, 2021
Rachel is twenty-four, a lapsed Jew who has made calorie restriction her religion. By day, she maintains an illusion of existential control, by way of obsessive food rituals, while working as an underling at a Los Angeles talent management agency. At night, she pedals nowhere on the elliptical machine. Rachel is content to carry on subsisting—until her therapist encourages her to take a ninety-day communication detox from her mother, who raised her in the tradition of calorie counting.

Early in the detox, Rachel meets Miriam, a zaftig young Orthodox Jewish woman who works at her favorite frozen yogurt shop and is intent upon feeding her. Rachel is suddenly and powerfully entranced by Miriam—by her sundaes and her body, her faith and her family—and as the two grow closer, Rachel embarks on a journey marked by mirrors, mysticism, mothers, milk, and honey.

Pairing superlative emotional insight with unabashed vivid fantasy, Melissa Broder tells a tale of appetites: physical hunger, sexual desire, spiritual longing, and the ways that we as humans can compartmentalize these so often interdependent instincts. Milk Fed is a tender and riotously funny meditation on love, certitude, and the question of what we are all being fed, from one of our major writers on the psyche—both sacred and profane.

 
Broder is in conversation with ryan o'connell, the writer, creator and star of the emmy-nominated television show special on netflix.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Rich Ferguson, “EVERYTHING IS RADIANT BETWEEN THE HATES” w/ Special Guests

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, fiction, essays, skylit by skylightbooks on February 15th, 2021
Beloved Los Angeles poet/performer Rich Ferguson delivers a tender, complex collection in Everything is Radiant Between the Hates, whose 8 sections offer free verse and prose poems ranging from hip satire to elegy and beyond - to gentle mantras that you might repeat to yourself in a parking lot or in bed at night when your obnoxious downstairs neighbor won't quieten down. Bold, generous and self-deprecating, Ferguson's work challenges readers to accept grief and dare - despite it, because of it - to dream of glorious things.
 
Ferguson is joined by Heater Woodbury, Gayle Brandeis, and J. Ryan Stradal.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Amy Shira Teitel, “FIGHTING FOR SPACE”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, Feminism, nonfiction, history, biography, science, skylit by skylightbooks on February 13th, 2021
When the space age dawned in the late 1950s, Jackie Cochran held more propeller and jet flying records than any pilot of the twentieth century—man or woman. She had led the Women's Auxiliary Service Pilots during the Second World War, was the first woman to break the sound barrier, ran her own luxury cosmetics company, and counted multiple presidents among her personal friends. She was more qualified than any woman in the world to make the leap from atmosphere to orbit. Yet it was Jerrie Cobb, twenty-five years Jackie's junior and a record-holding pilot in her own right, who finagled her way into taking the same medical tests as the Mercury astronauts. The prospect of flying in space quickly became her obsession.

While the American and international media spun the shocking story of a "woman astronaut" program, Jackie and Jerrie struggled to gain control of the narrative, each hoping to turn the rumored program into their own ideal reality—an issue that ultimately went all the way to Congress.

Fighting for Space, a dual biography of audacious trailblazers Jackie Cochran and Jerrie Cobb presents these fascinating and fearless women in all their glory and grit, using their stories as guides through the shifting social, political, and technical landscape of the time.

 
Author Amy Shira Teitel is in conversation with Skylight's own Lance Morgan.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Kay Gabriel & Andrea Abi-Karam, “WE WANT IT ALL”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, transgender, LGBTQ, trans, skylit by skylightbooks on February 10th, 2021
Editors Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel offer We Want it All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics as an experiment into how far literature, written from an identitarian standpoint, can go as a fellow traveler with social movements and revolutionary demands. Writing in dialogue with emancipatory political movements, the intergenerational writers assembled here imagine an altogether overturned world in poems that pursue the particular and multiple trans relationships to desire, embodiment, housing, sex, ecology, history, pop culture, and the working day.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Lynell George, “A HANDFUL OF EARTH, A HANDFUL OF SKY” w/ Louise Steinman

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, journalism, writing, biography, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on February 8th, 2021

A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky: The World of Octavia E. Butler offers a blueprint for a creative life from the perspective of award-winning science-fiction writer and “MacArthur Genius” Octavia E. Butler. It is a collection of ideas about how to look, listen, breathe—how to be in the world. This book is about the creative process, but not on the page; its canvas is much larger. Author Lynell George not only engages the world that shaped Octavia E. Butler, she also explores the very specific processes through which Butler shaped herself—her unique process of self-making. It’s about creating a life with what little you have—hand-me-down books, repurposed diaries, journals, stealing time to write in the middle of the night, making a small check stretch—bit by bit by bit. A Handful of Earth, A Handful of Sky draws the reader into Butler’s world, creating a sense of unmatched intimacy with the deeply private writer.

George is in conversation with writer, artist, and literary curator Louise Steinman.

 
This episode was recorded on November 9, 2020 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
 
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Megan Rosenbloom, “DARK ARCHIVES” w/ Caitlin Doughty

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, nonfiction, journalism, history, skylit by skylightbooks on February 5th, 2021
On bookshelves around the world, surrounded by ordinary books bound in paper and leather, rest other volumes of a distinctly strange and grisly sort: those bound in human skin. Would you know one if you held it in your hand?

In Dark Archives, Megan Rosenbloom seeks out the historic and scientific truths behind anthropodermic bibliopegy—the practice of binding books in this most intimate covering. Dozens of such books live on in the world’s most famous libraries and museums. Dark Archives exhumes their origins and brings to life the doctors, murderers, innocents, and indigents whose lives are sewn together in this disquieting collection. Along the way, Rosenbloom tells the story of how her team of scientists, curators, and librarians test rumored anthropodermic books, untangling the myths around their creation and reckoning with the ethics of their custodianship.

A librarian and journalist, Rosenbloom is a member of The Order of the Good Death and a cofounder of their Death Salon, a community that encourages conversations, scholarship, and art about mortality and mourning. In Dark Archives—captivating and macabre in all the right ways—she has crafted a narrative that is equal parts detective work, academic intrigue, history, and medical curiosity: a book as rare and thrilling as its subject.

Rosenbloom is joined by mortician and activist Caitlin Doughty.
 
This episode was recorded on October 29 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Catie Disabato, “U UP?”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, mystery, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on February 3rd, 2021
Eve has a carefully curated online life, works occasionally, and texts constantly with her best friend, Ezra. Basically, she is an archetypal L.A. millennial. She has also been carrying on a year-long conversation with her deceased friend Miggy over text. But when Ezra goes missing on the anniversary weekend of Miggy's death, Eve feels like her world is shattering.

Over a frantic weekend Eve investigates Ezra's disappearance, scouring social media for clues, while drowning her anger and anxiety in drinks, drugs, and spiritual cleansing. Eve starts to spiral as her friends try to convince her that she's overreacting, and ghosts--both real and metaphorical--continue to haunt her. When she uncovers clues to a life Ezra kept hidden, Eve starts to question how much she really knows about her best friend...and herself.

In U UP?, Catie Disabato holds a mirror to the ways the phantom selves we create online permeate our emotional lives and hide our worst traits from everyone, including ourselves.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Kim Young, “TIGERS” w/ Sandra Hunter

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, poetry, skylit by skylightbooks on February 1st, 2021
TIGERS is an exploration of a series of mutigenerational landscapes of the feminine--female adolescence, womanhood, motherhood, and personal revelation. Where the traditional coming of age story moves from innocence to experience, TIGERS moves, through the excavation of trauma, addiction, recovery, adolescence, parenthood, and punk rock, from the ignorance and misunderstanding of a youth's misbegotten toughness, into a turning inward toward tenderness and resilience--toward, in essence, what it really takes to be mature, tough, and--tigerly. With a principle focus on the dangers threatening girlhood, this book examines not merely the threat of degradation and assault, but, more deeply, the squandering of love through ignorance and inattention. TIGERS here surely serve as symbols for such outward and inward threat, but also as a sign of the mature and tender maternal toughness of youth-grown-wise through trial and reclamation.
 
Author Kim Young is in conversation with Sandra Hunter.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Eileen Myles, “FOR NOW” w/ Adam Fitzgerald

Posted in literature, skylight books, book stores, books, Memoir, nonfiction, essays, writing, LGBTQ, biography, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on January 27th, 2021
In this raucous meditation, Eileen Myles offers an intimate glimpse into creativity’s immediacy. With erudition and wit, Myles recounts their early years as an awakening writer; existential struggles with landlords; storied moments with neighbors, friends, and lovers; and the textures and identities of cities and the country that reveal the nature of writing as presence in time.
 
For Myles, time’s “optic quality” is what enables writing in the first place—as attention, as devotion, as excess. It is this chronologized vision that enables the writer to love the world as it presently is, lending love a linguistic permanence amid social and political systems that threaten to eradicate it. Irreverent, generous, and always insightful, For Now is a candid record of the creative process from one of our most beloved artists.
 
Myles is in conversation with Adam Fitzgerald, professor of creative writing at Rutgers University.
 
This episode was recorded on Monday, October 19 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & 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: Betto Arcos, “MUSIC STORIES FROM THE COSMIC BARRIO”

Posted in literature, skylight books, book stores, books, nonfiction, music, latinx, skylit by skylightbooks on January 23rd, 2021

Music Stories from the Cosmic Barrios is a collection of 150 stories about music from all over Latin America, including music from Cuba, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, as well as music from Africa, the Middle East and Europe. The stories were originally broadcast on public radio programs including NPR, The World, BCC, KPCC and Latino USA. The book contains 12 chapters, each chapter follows a specific narrative: music and identity; education, community building, immigration, women's empowerment, adversity, social unrest and violence, instruments, producers, place and nation; the music of Brazil, Cuba music and the diaspora. The book's main focus is Latin American music from across the continent, with an emphasis on the music of Latinos and other ethnic groups in Los Angeles. The book also tells a personal story: the author's constant, tireless search for stories that help explain how complex and diverse humans are and how we share something so special that brings us together: music. This is a 380 page book, each story is accompanied by a black and white photo of the artist - many of the photos by author Betto Arcos.

Arcos is joined in conversation by NPR's Mandalit Del Barco.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

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

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




SKYLIT: David Leo Rice, “A ROOM IN DODGE CITY, VOL. 2″ w/ Brian Evenson

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, horror, novels, skylit by skylightbooks on January 20th, 2021
The first book in the Room in Dodge City trilogy brought us a nameless drifter arriving in a bizarre Western town that might encompass all of reality. Now, our drifter considers what happens when drifting on is no longer an option. Focusing on the mysterious workings of The Dodge City Film Industry and the personality cult surrounding Blut Branson, its most legendary director, David Leo Rice's Volume 2 asks hard questions about the nature of art, fame, competition and, ultimately, the ongoing struggle to be born. A mystical inquiry into the sacred and the profane, it expands the universe of the first volume, while exploring yet-stranger territory and laying the foundation for the trilogy’s apocalyptic finale.

Rice is in conversation with fellow writer Brian Evenson.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

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

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




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Chelsea G. Summers, “A CERTAIN ANGER” w/ Laurie Penny

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, novels by skylightbooks on January 15th, 2021

Food critic Dorothy Daniels loves what she does. Discerning, meticulous, and very, very smart, Dorothy's clear mastery of the culinary arts make it likely that she could, on any given night, whip up a more inspired dish than any one of the chefs she writes about.

Dorothy loves sex as much as she loves food, and while she has struggled to find a long-term partner that can keep up with her, she makes the best of her single life, frequently traveling from Manhattan to Italy for a taste of both. But there is something within Dorothy that's different from everyone else, and having suppressed it long enough, she starts to embrace what makes Dorothy uniquely, terrifyingly herself. Recounting her life from a seemingly idyllic farm-to-table childhood, the heights of her career, to the moment she plunges an ice pick into a man's neck on Fire Island, Dorothy Daniels show us what happens when a woman finally embraces her superiority. 

A satire of early foodieism, a critique of how gender is defined, and a showcase of virtuoso storytelling, Chelsea G. SummersA Certain Hunger introduces us to the food world's most charming psychopath and an exciting new voice in fiction.

Summers is in conversation with award-winning author, columnist, journalist, and screenwriter Laurie Penny.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

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

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





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