Eerie Changes in Emotional Timbre: Adam Morris on Translating João Gilberto Noll

By Nathan Scott McNamara

Brazilian writer João Gilberto Noll’s Atlantic Hotel is a surreal journey — by bus, foot, and wheelchair — around southern Brazil. The pages fly past in this short novel; the narrator travels from a murder scene in a hotel, to the beach, to a brothel, and through an apocalyptic storm, before waking up to the amputation of his own leg. And that’s just in the first half of this 140-page book. Continue reading

Gunshots, a Writing Coach, and Bureaucrats

By Donna Myrow

My determination to reach the most at-risk youth led me to Jefferson High School in the mid 1990’s, in one of Los Angeles’ toughest neighborhoods. Jefferson had served a predominantly black community around Central Avenue and 41st Street since the 1920s. Just inside the front entrance visitors could marvel at the photos of famous alums, including Dr. Ralph Bunche and actress Dorothy Dandridge. Continue reading

The Trial of the Gang of Four — As History and Current Events

By Liz Carter

Forced confessions, show trials, and crises of legitimacy. These are topics covered in Alexander C. Cook’s important book, The Cultural Revolution on Trial: Mao and the Gang of Four, which Cambridge University Press published in November. They are also issues China has been facing recently, as Xi Jinping has sought to consolidate power and bolster faith in the Communist Party. Cook’s primary purpose is not, however, to offer a cautionary tale about history repeating itself, but to put forward a novel framework for understanding historical trauma, its roots, and its repercussions. Continue reading

How LitFest Pasadena Got Rolling

By Jervey Tervalon, Literary Director of LitFest Pasadena

LitFest Pasadena came into being because I used to go to the Squaw Valley Writers Conference when it was fun by the late Oakley Hall, my former professor in UC Irvine’s MFA program. As a writer it was what I looked forward to more than almost anything else in my literary life. Oakley started Squaw Valley Writers Conference, I was told, because he wanted to see his writer friends and this was a good way of doing it. That sense of community was genuine and cathartic. Continue reading

Tom Lutz Discusses the Future of Publishing in the Premiere Issue of LALA Magazine


In the premiere issue of the magazine LALA, available on stands today, our Editor-in-Chief, Tom Lutz, weighs in on the future of publishing in our city and beyond: “Publishing is in the process of decentralizing, like every other culture industry in the digital age, and a lot of new micro-publishers and medium-size publishers have sprung up in Los Angeles. LARB has started a summer publishing workshop with the express Intent to further build the infrastructure for publishing on the West Coast, insuring that more publishing will be happening in L.A. 20 years from now.” For this and more, pick up an issue. Continue reading

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