Thursday, February 14, 2019

Chicanonautica: Live From the SFF Latinx Bundle

by Ernest Hogan

When I first started doing this column, I seemed to be the only Chicano science fiction writer around, maybe even the first. That scared me. It was also lonely. But then I think about my days as a teenage science fan, and how often mine was the only brown face in the room.

Was I a lone Chicanonaut, floating at the end of long life-line?
After a decade of connection to the interwebs, I’ve found that it’s not true. There are others out there, Chicanos, Latinos, Latinx, Latinoids.

We don’t just seek out new life and new civilizations, we create them. We are them.

And now, Silvia Moreno-Garcia has curated the SFF Latinx Bundle, and I’m truly feeling part of a community of imaginative writers who come from the array of cultures that were affected by the influence of the Spanish Armada. Not just a new world, but new worlds.

It’s also a great deal.

For $15 you get eleven SFF Latinx ebooks. You can go to a book store, spend that much, and come home with only one paperback.

High Aztech is part of the bundle.

Even if you already have read High Aztech, the other books are worth getting.

I have already read and reviewed Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s tale of witchcraft and analog technology in Mexico City, Signal to Noise, James Steves-Arces’ speculation on future of religious conflicts, Soulsaver, and Rudy Ch. Garcia’s magic realistic phantasmagoria The Closet of Discarded Dreams.

I blasted through David Bowles’ Lords of the Earth, a reinvention of the kaiju (Japanese giant monster) genre by setting it in contemporary Mexico, and using preColumbian mythology. I’m glad to report that it is satisfying to both my inner child who loved watching Strange Tales of Science Fiction on Channel 9 in L.A. back in the Sixties, and to the old vato who became the Father of Chicano Science Fiction. 

Now I'm reading Sabrina Vourvoulias' immigrant dystopia, Ink, that is providing an interesting counterpoint to the current news coming out of Washington.

I look forward to writing some rave reviews.

I’m also looking forward reading to Carlos Hernandez’s  The Assimilated Cuban’s Guide to Quantum Santeria, Lisa M. Bradley’s The Haunted Girl, Rosalie Morales Kearns’ Virgins & Tricksters, Daniel José Older’s Salsa Nocturna, , Kathleen Alcalá’s Mrs. Vargas and the Dead Naturalists. Diverse works from diverse cultures. 
What’s makes it even more exciting is, thanks to the wonderful, brave new world of digital publishing and the internet, it's not just a product, it’s an event! It’s a limited-time-only deal. There’s a countdown clock on the website, clicking away the seconds before . . .

You better go there and buy it now!

Ernest Hogan is working on a new short story, trying to finish a novel, and doing some cartooning. Not to mention navigating his personal life, and trying channel his reactions to the current political turmoil into creative energy.

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