Monday, September 30, 2019

2019 International Latino Book Awards: Poesía y Cuento

2019 International Latino Book Awards: Poesía y Cuento
por Xánath Caraza

Cada año los International Latino Book Awards celebran la literatura en sus diferentes categorías escrita por Chicanos, Latinos en los Estados Unidos y más allá.  El sábado, 21 de septiembre, fue la ceremonia de premiación para la edición de 2019 de los International Latino Book Awards.

Hoy celebramos los premios de poesía y de cuento.  

Para Poesía hubo tres categorías:

Best Poetry Book—One Author—English
Best Poetry Book—One Author—Spanish
Best Poetry Book—Multi-Author 

Para Cuento hubo dos categorías:

Best Short Story Collection—Spanish
Best Short Story Collection—English

Este 2019 tuve el gran honor de recibir Segundo lugar para dos de mis libros en dos categorías diferentes:

Hudson (Editorial Nazarí, 2018), traducido por Sandra Kingery: Segundo lugar como mejor libro de poesía en español por un autor.


Metztli (Editorial Capítulo Siete, 2018), traducido por Sandra Kingery y Kaitlyn Hipple: Segundo lugar como mejor colección de cuento

Aquí pueden hacer click para ver una lista completa de todos los ganadores en todas las categorías para los ILBA de 2019.

¡Felicidades a todos los ganadores de los 2019 International Latino Book Awards!

Friday, September 27, 2019


Each one of these pics is supposed to be worth several words.  A thousand?  If so, I need not say more.  All photographs copyright (C) Manuel Ramos.



Manuel Ramos writes crime fiction. His latest is The Golden Havana Night (Arte Público Press.) 

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Chicanonautica: Weird Scenes From CDMX

One of the perks of working in a library as a day job is I keep finding books that I might have otherwise missed. I’m always on the lookout while shelving the Spanish language section. Sure enough, a title caught my eye:  

Escenarios Para el Fin del Mundo. (This being La Bloga, I’m assuming I don’t have to translate it.) It was by Bernardo Fernández, who also goes by “Bef.” It had a cover that suggested steampunk and a sense of humor. I grabbed it, checked it out, and read it.

I was impressed, and tore through it faster and with more enthusiasm than I usually do with my Spanish practice reading.

I even wrote a quick Goodreads review in my fonqui, pocho Spanish:

Cuentos de ciencia ficción/lo fantastico desde CDMX de un escritor e ilustrador se llama “uno de los narradores más originales de su generación.” Con extraterrestriales, un demonio, cyberpunk, steampunk, escenarios apocalypticos, y un ángel. ¡Guao!

And of course, I needed to to a proper Chicanonautica write-up here at La Bloga . . .

Bernardo Fernádez, Bef, is an illustrator/writer who has published graphic as well as text novels. His writing centers around CDMX, which for those of you aren’t plugged into the Spanish language media is short for Cuidad Mexico, Mexico City, La Capital Azteca Aztec, originally Tenochtitlán. His work shows a sense of humor, and a style coming out of the comics/graphic novel experience that I find very appealing, not to mention fun. He lists Ray Bradbury, Neil Gaiman, and his “amigo” Bruce Sterling, as influences. He also quotes Tom Waits.

The stories in Escenarios Para el Fin del Mundo deal with aliens infiltrating the Mexican government, cyberpunk, steampunk, demons, angels, and of course apocalyptic scenes.

Two of them have been translated and published in English. “Las Últimas Horas de los Útimos Días/ The  Last Hours of the Last Days” originally appeared in both languages in Rudy Rucker’s webzine Flurb, and also in The Apex Book of World SF 4; “Leones,” in which lions invade Mexico City, was in Three Messages and A Warning: Contemporary Mexican Short Stories of the Fantastic.

My favorites were “La Bestia Ha Muerto,” in which the premature introduction of steampunk technology changes the history of Mexico and the world, and “La Sangre Derramada Por Nuestros Héroes” speculates on Nazis fleeing to Brazil with similar results. No escaping those alternate universes. Especially in the Latinoid continuum.

Somebody really needs to translate this book. All those poor monolinguals need it.

Ernest Hogan will have a story in the upcoming American Monsters: Part Two, and will pick the winners of the Somos en escrito 2nd Annual Extra-Fiction Contest--the deadline is September 30, 2019.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Between Us and Abuela: A Family Story from the Border

Written by Mitali Perkins
Illustrated by Sara Palacios

*Age Range: 3 - 6 years
*Grade Level: 1 - 2
*Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
*ISBN-10: 0374303738
*ISBN-13: 978-0374303730

It's almost time for Christmas, and Maria is traveling with her mother and younger brother, Juan, to visit their grandmother on the border of California and Mexico.

For the few minutes they can share together along the fence, Maria and her brother plan to exchange stories and Christmas gifts with the grandmother they haven't seen in years. But when Juan's gift is too big to fit through the slats in the fence, Maria has a brilliant idea. 

Here is a heartwarming tale of families and the miracle of love.


A Junior Library Guild Selection!

"A powerful picture book debut . . . Cartoon drawings emphasize the resilience of Abuela and her family as they navigate the border landscape, the impenetrable wall, and a situation that feels unfathomablebut is, unfortunately, all too based in reality." Publishers Weekly, starred review

"This touching contemporary story sensitively focuses on the U.S.–Mexican border and Mexico's cultural traditions in a heartwarming, informative, and hopeful way. Perkins gently voices some of the challenges families can experience when they are separated by a border . . . Maria’s inventive solution to that distance will make readers cheer, and Palacios’ warm illustrations in saturated colors make the scenes vibrant with feeling and quietly fold in informative visual details about the border and the family’s cultural traditions." Booklist

"An excellent prompt for discussion . . . a cliché-busting holiday book that could deepen a unit on celebration." BCCB

Mitali Perkins has written twelve novels for young readers including BAMBOO PEOPLE, TIGER BOY, RICKSHAW GIRL (film in 2019), and YOU BRING THE DISTANT NEAR (nominated for the National Book Award.) She lives and writes in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Sara Palacios is the recipient of a Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor for Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match and the illustrator of several other picture books, including Henry Holton Takes the Ice. Sara graduated with a degree in graphic design and went on to earn BFA and MFA degrees in illustration from the Academy of Art in San Francisco. A native of Mexico, Sara now lives in San Francisco.