by Mike Sonksen

From: Entropy

palm-trees-1209185_1280It’s no secret that Literary Los Angeles is hotter than the Mojave. The following essay is a dispatch spotlighting a new bookstore and several recent books.

The latest great news is the opening of a new bookstore in Boyle Heights, OTHER BOOKS / OTROS LIBROS on Cesar Chavez and Cummings. Located a block from the legendary eatery Guisados, the new store is a collaboration between the proprietors of Seite Books, formerly in East Los Angeles and KAYA Press. This new store is highly anticipated because Seite has always had an incredible collection of titles and KAYA Press is one of the West Coast’s most innovative presses. Seite was forced to relocate because their lease was not renewed on their original space and this new partnership puts them on an even busier street in collaboration with KAYA, so it’s a double blessing for aficionados of local literature.

On Thursday, October 20th at 7.30 PM, they are going to be celebrating the launch of KAYA’s new edition of AND CHINA HAS HANDS, a novel by the eccentric Marxist agitprop writer HT Tsiang. Tsiang is a mythical author who died in 1971 and is buried down the street from the new shop in Evergreen Cemetery. The book release party will feature an all-star cast of literary heroes including the novel’s editor, Floyd Cheung, Ed Lin, Kima Jones, Iris de Anda, Jen Hofer, and Sesshu Foster. Their soft opening is Thursday, October 20th, but many more events are being planned as we speak.

Other Books / Otros Libros
2006 East Cesar e Chavez Avenue 90033

Serve the People: A Word on Six Books

Similar to many English, Poetry and Writing instructors, I am always reading several books at once. Simultaneously I am always grading stacks of student essays and other writing assignments along with my family commitments, so I rarely have the time to write about what I read with the detail that I’d like to. Nonetheless, I have come across so many engrossing page-turners in the last several months that the following account includes an eclectic offering of first rate books that necessitated this short essay.

14463216-10154506603681054-8080674683790608363-nGentre Re Place Ing by Jessica Ceballos, Writ Large Press

This 37-page chapbook fuses documentary poetry, Los Angeles history and creative nonfiction in an experimental register grappling with gentrification across Los Angeles in 2016. The author wants to bring the disappeared back home. The text tackles issues like how do the less fortunate exist in an ever-expensive landscape, asking questions like: “Where did they go?” “What exactly is a BIG city?” “What does community mean?” and “What does affordable housing mean to you?” Ceballos urges us to take the detour because, “Today is sadder than yesterday, and twice as sad as the day before, I don’t want to know how it will feel tomorrow, not right now anyways, so I’ll hold my breath until it all disappears and there’s no one left to say goodbye to.” Highlighting Chinatown and Highland Park, the Los Angeles native Ceballos wants us “to build something again, after the undoing.” Read Rest of Article Here



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