Friday, February 19, 2010

New Books, New Theater, New Film, New Cover

New Books
[publisher blurbs]

The Name Partner
Carlos Cisneros
Arte Público, March

In this hard-hitting and timely novel about a drug company that puts its shareholders' profits over safety, Carlos Cisneros takes the reader on a whirlwind ride as his protagonist struggles with his responsibilities to his client, his family, and his own personal ethics.

Women Who Live in Coffee Shops and Other Stories

Stella Pope Duarte
Arte Público, March

Set against an urban backdrop of seedy motels and dilapidated houses next to industrial buildings and railroad tracks, Stella Pope Duarte's award-winning stories follow characters who make up the city's underbelly. Some strut through the lethal streets, flamboyant and hard to miss -- flashy divas, transvestites, and prostitutes, like Valentine, "one of the girls who decorated Van Buren Street like ornaments dangling precariously on a Christmas tree." Others remain hidden, invisible to those who don't seek them out -- bag ladies, illegals, and addicts.

Winner of the University of California, Irvine's Chicano/Latino Literary Prize, this collection of short stories set in Phoenix reveals the hard-scrabble people living on the razor-edge of city life.

Hasta la Vista Lola!
Misa Ramirez
Minotaur, January

When Lola comes home to her parents’ house to find a horde of relatives mourning her death, no one is more surprised than she is. The news had reported that one Lola Cruz, PI was found murdered in an alley, causing great alarm in the Cruz family. Before Lola can say “boo,” a cop comes to the house. It turns out the dead woman had a driver’s license with Lola’s information. Between avoiding an unsavory ex-boyfriend, sorting out mixed signals from the very interested but not yet committed Jack Callaghan, and filling in as a waitress at her parents’ Mexican restaurant, Lola tries to find out who the woman was and why she stole her identity. Was the woman hiding from someone who meant her harm, or is there someone out there who wants Lola dead?

This is a follow-up to Ramirez’s debut novel, Living the Vida Lola.

Chilean theater group visits Denver, Su Teatro

From the unquiet mind of Guillermo Calderón comes a haunting futuristic drama about war in the Americas: Diciembre. Performed by the Chilean company, Teatro en el blanco (Theater on Target), Su Teatro presents this gripping contemporary drama as part of the National Performance Network’s Performing Americas project, which is dedicated to promoting theater exchanges between U.S. and Latin American theater companies.

Diciembre takes place in Santiago on Christmas Eve 2014 with the city besieged by Peruvian forces. Young soldier Jorge returns home on a 24-hour leave to celebrate the holiday with his pregnant twin sisters, who each have sharply different views on nationalism and the morality of war. One wants Jorge to defect, the other demands he return to the fight. Jorge, however, has his own take on the matter.

A darling of the international theater circuit, Guillermo Calderón has quickly become one of the most talked about young playwrights from South America. With Diciembre, he takes a hard look at irrational racism and the complicated divide between nationalism and pacifism.

Su Teatro Artistic Director Anthony Garcia says: “We have a tendency to look at war from a U.S. perspective. Diciembre challenges us to see beyond that narrow reality.”

Teatro en el blanco members will present master acting workshops while in residence at Su Teatro. The workshops will feature a combination of movement and exercises in rhythmic, vocal, and emotive expression, employing a combination of movement techniques that include yoga and dance.

Presented in Spanish with English surtitles, Diciembre will travel first to Miami Dade College in Florida and REDCAT theater in Los Angeles before ending its U.S. tour at Su Teatro.

Performances are Thursday, March 4, Friday, March 5, and Saturday, March 6 at 7:30pm at Su Teatro’s new home, the Denver Civic Theatre at 721 Santa Fe Drive.

Please note: This is a special preview performance. Su Teatro will officially begin its tenure at the Denver Civic Theatre with the opening of La Carpa de los Rasquachis on March 18, 2010. More information coming soon.

For production information, or to schedule an interview, please contact John Kuebler at (303) 296-0219 or email john@suteatro.og.


“A courageous search for human dignity that dares to ask the questions no one wants to ask concerning immigration.” – Josefina Lopez, co-writer of Real Women Have Curves

Filmmaker Monika Navarro was 21 years old when she began making a film about her uncle Gino, who was deported from the U.S. and died in Tijuana, where he was buried in an unmarked grave. Two months later, her uncle Augie was also deported; both had been legal U.S. residents, military veterans -- and drug addicts. As filming progresses, Navarro uncovers a family history that embodies the best and worst of the relationship between the U.S. and Mexico. But, as she says early in the film, “I found myself also telling a different story -- about the kind of exile that has nothing to do with the government.” A universal story about the powerful bonds that hold families together through disappointments and broken promises, Lost Souls will premiere on the Emmy® Award–winning PBS series Independent Lens on Tuesday, March 23rd at 10 PM (check local listings).

Lost Souls moves from idyllic Southern California, where the filmmaker’s Mexican-American family has lived for more than four decades, to Mexico, piecing together the tragic events that lead to her uncles’ deportations. Her camera in tow, Navarro interviews her mother, uncles and cousins and opens a Pandora’s box of family secrets. Raised by a single mother, she reconnects with her absent father and slowly pieces together an epic story about an immigrant family with a dark history of abuse, addiction and abandonment as well as achievement and strength. Compelling and honest, Lost Souls introduces viewers to a remarkable family, willing to confront the secrets of its past and find ways to accept, forgive and forge ahead.

To learn more about the film, and the issues involved, visit the companion website for Lost Souls (Animas Perdidas) at Get detailed information on the film, watch preview clips, read an interview with the filmmaker, and explore the subject in depth with links and resources. The site also features a Talkback section where viewers can share their ideas and opinions. There is also a clip from the movie at the director's website, here.

Lost Souls (Animas Perdidas) will be available for purchase from PBS Home Video.

King of the Chicanos

The cover of King of the Chicanos has been finalized and although I may be biased, I think it's beautiful. Bryce Milligan at Wings Press did a great job. And the art by César Martínez -- Bato con Sunglasses -- is perfect for the story.

Here it is - what do you think? Click on the image for a better view. The book's official publication date is May.



Jesse Tijerina said...

Firme, I can't wait for May.

Daniel A. Olivas said...

Yes, the cover is beautiful...we wait anxiously for the book's release!

msedano said...

those comments on the back cover tell their own tale. wonderful endorsers, endorsements. looking forward to may's release day.


Lucha Corpi said...

Having read the galleys, I can assure all you're in for a treat+. Congrats, Manuel!!

Rene Colato Lainez said...