September 4, 1994 |
Ronald L. Ruiz's first novel, "Happy Birthday Jesus," falls into a genre that has produced some of the most compelling fiction of the past two centuries: the novel that humanizes a criminal and lets us walk in his shoes.
June 30, 1996 |
Who wants to jump into a debate over what a role model ought to be--as opposed to who he was? Initially, I was wary of reviewing this anthology of published and unpublished fiction and nonfiction writings of the late Oscar "Zeta" Acosta, the legendary Chicano lawyer and novelist. As Ilan Stavans, the editor, so aptly put it: "[Acosta's] anarchism has been glorified and ridiculed and his misogynist views have been consistently attacked by feminists." And with good reason.
March 20, 1988
In "Patriots," Langguth gives the making and winning of the American Revolution in all its glory, gore and moral frailty. A spicy, toothsome work of American history.--Jody Powell RAINBOW'S END by Genaro Gonzalez (Arte Publico Press: $8.50, paper; 227 pp.) "Rainbow's End" captures the ambiente of a borderland household: a grandfather who swam across the Rio Grande in the 1930s, Vietnam vets and smugglers.--Tom Miller
August 26, 1990
by ERNESTO TREJO Father, one summer I was seven, on a Sunday, the usual day for miracles, you held me and my brother all afternoon slapping the river. Told us to open our eyes underwater and not be afraid. There, I saw the current combing your legs, small and sturdy, the tired legs of a barber. Later you swam where it was deep with us clinging to your neck until you said let go , knowing that we wouldn't sink.
July 12, 1987 |
Sir. You understand. I am poor. I work from sunup to sundown. Never mind what I do . . . yet, I'll tell: I send messengers to the stars. With all the trouble and madness on this earth I feel the stars to be more human. I think I'll weave blankets and tell them I love them so dearly. From "The Sadness of Days" by Luis Omar Salinas (Arte Publico Press, University of Houston, University Park, Houston, Tex. 77004: $8; 160 pp.). Salinas' first book of poetry appeared in 1970.
December 17, 1992 |
U.S. Latino writers are receiving increased attention from mainstream media and publishing houses. * "Rain of Gold," Victor Villasenor's nonfiction saga of his family, and called a Latino "Roots," received a six-figure price from Dell Publishing for its paperback rights. * Sandra Cisneros' book of short stories, "Woman Hollering Creek," and her earlier "The House on Mango Street," appeared in tony bookstores under the imprint of publishing giant Random House.
December 27, 1991 |
For novelist Elias Miguel Munoz of Mission Viejo, it's not a question of whether he should devote his life to writing. "I have no choice but to write," says Munoz, 37. "I love language. I love words. I love telling stories." But the Cuban-born author has another, equally compelling reason he gave up his career as a university professor of literature to spend an average of 10 hours a day holed up in his condominium writing.
August 16, 1992 |
In most rags-to-riches stories about writers, the author toils for years on a "big" book, goes into debt, finally gets a contract from a top publisher, then enjoys huge success. But, in the case of Victor Villasenor, a hard-working, well-regarded writer from Oceanside, it didn't quite work out that way. The key elements of the story were there--the hard work, the debts and the big payoff.