By now you know that this year's Latino Book & Family Festival in Los Angeles was the largest gathering of Latino authors (like ever). We've featured it extensively here on La Bloga, and all over hyperspace you can pick up reviews, fotos, vibes, and comments about the LBFF. La Bloga was on the scene, of course. We were in the audience, on the panels, making presentations, shopping the vendors, reading from our works, generally taking in the cool ambiente and cozying up to the literary gente. We all had a good time, as you can tell from the earlier posts this week by Daniel Olivas and Michael Sedano. And we were present in force: Olga, Rene, Daniel, Michael, tatiana, me, as well as guest contributors like Melinda Palacio, and interviewees like Tim Z. Hernandez.
Here are a slew of photographs that I'm posting with the intention of trying to show the diversity of the festival. But photos can't do the event any justice - again, you hadda be there.
La Bloga "reporters" Michael Sedano, René Colato Laínez, tatiana de la tierra, Manuel Ramos at the banquet on Saturday night where we heard a very moving and inspirational talk from Greg Boyle, Homeboy Industries founder.
Another bloguera, Olga Garcia Echevarria - we ran into her at the Xokolatl Café, wrapping up her post for La Bloga.
Luis J. Rodriguez, Michele Serros, Melinda Palacio and Daniel Olivas look happy and satisfied after their panel on the topic Mixing It Up: Writers Who Write in Multiple Genres.
Cartoonists, comic book authors and general bon vivants Rafael Navarro and Javier Hernandez certainly enjoyed themselves. I picked up a couple of their books, el Muerto and Sonambulo, and am glad I made a connection with two artists who are doing it their own unique way.
More cartoonists: Lalo Alcaraz (La Cucaracha) and Philip Victor (Soul Assassin) - down-and-dirty writers, nice guys up close.
One of the authors who made a special presentation - Susan Orosco from Toledo, with her husband Gary. Susan spoke about the 7 Powers all Latinos Have Upon Which to Build an Empire - impressive title, impressive woman.
Eliud Martinez (Voice-Haunted Journey, Professor Emeritus of Creative Writing and Comparative Literature at UC Riverside [recently retired]) and Daniel Cano (Pepe Rios, Shifting Loyalties, Death and the American Dream) - stalwarts of Chicano Literature.
Tim Z. Hernandez (Breathing, In Dust) and some other guy talk about big things happening to Tim that involve Colorado - stay tuned to La Bloga for more details.
Panelists (including members of Mariachi Divas) who discussed the intriguing topic of Mariachi! Making a Difference Outside and Inside the Classroom.
Finally, the best panel of the event - The Chicano Novel: Beyond the Barrio, with Mike Padilla (The Girls from the Revolutionary Cantina), Daniel Cano, Manuel Ramos, and Victor Cass (Telenovela), moderated by Eliud Martinez, not pictured here - seriously, we had a great conversation talking about the concept of the "barrio" - mental, physical, geographical, emotional - and what it means to writing about Chicanos, for Chicanos, or by Chicanos. Too bad you missed it - and there isn't a recording. So you have to take my word for it. Look for us next year.
Ah, El Lay - you're starting to grow on me.