Coming to a Sunday LA Times near you (if you still read the paper) or available online right now:
'A Literary Field Guide' blends poems and stories into 'a kaleidoscopic picture' of O.C. by Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil -
When Lisa Alvarez would tell people that she was editing an anthology of poems, novels and short stories about Orange County, she often got puzzled looks.
"The initial response is, 'There's nothing here,'" she said. "People think about the popular culture images of Orange County, the desperate 'Housewives,' the terrible Laguna Beach TV show, and they don't think of it as a place with a history.
The 400-plus page book, published in February, contains more than 60 poems, short stories, novel chapters and narrative nonfiction by emerging and established writers — including Michael Chabon, Joan Didion, E.L. Doctorow and Steve Martin — that reflect on the county's diverse natural and man-made landscapes...
...While the stories take place over the past 140 years and are told by a diverse group of narrators, located from the ocean to the mountains, several themes emerge.
One is that of the new arrival.
"We are what we are not only because people grow up here, but because new people come here," said Alvarez, who notes that each of the book's six sections includes stories from new arrivals or immigrants, including Victor Villaseñor, the son of Mexican immigrants, and Firoozeh Dumas, an Iranian immigrant in Newport Beach....To read the rest, click here.
Readings continue around the county through winter, including stops at various county libraries (RSM, Katie Wheeler, Brea, Laguna and Newport), Sherman Gardens and Library, Biola University, CSULB and more - and this weekend at Literary Orange.
Check out their Facebook page.
Rebel Girl thinks it's nice to see a project which started as a sabbatical seven years ago finally make it way into print.