Rancho Palos Verdes, CA– To celebrate the Printed and Spoken Words, Philippine Expressions Bookshop will host its annual Filipino American Authors Night and present eight authors and their new works to the community. Traditionally, Authors Night is held on the eve of the LA Times Festival of Books when authors gather in Los Angeles for the Festival. This year, Authors Night will be held on Friday, April 19 from 5:30pm – 9:00pm at the Community Hall of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC) which is located at 1145 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles. The building is on the corner of Lucas Street and Wilshire, next to the Good Samaritan Hospital. Visit http:///www.apalc.org/for the map site. The venue host is Carmina Ocampo, a Fil Am lawyer connected with APALC. The event is free and open to the public but RSVP is requested. Call Linda Nietes at (310) 514-9139 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Street parking is available or at Athena Parking for $6.00 located at 634 Lucas Street.
Featured Authors at this year’s event include two out-of-state women authors: Almira Astudillo Gilles of Chicago and Criselda Yabes, a journalist from Manila. The rest of the authors are from Northern and Southern California: Janet Stickmon of Napa Valley, Steven Yagyagan of San Diego, Santa Monica author Cecilia Manguerra Brainard and debut authors Marvin Gapultos, Giovanni Ortega and Sumi Sevilla Haru who are presenting their first books. The authors will talk, read and sign their books.
Every year, the small literary community within the big Filipino American community of Southern CA awaits the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books which is now on its eighteenth year. Philippine Expressions Bookshop has participated in the Festival since 1997. The Bookshop started with just a couple of Fil Am authors and over the years, more and more works of Fil Am authors have been published. Except for Brainard and Gilles, six Featured Authors will also sign books during the Festival. They will be joined by four other authors: Carina Forsythe known in the writing world as Carina Monica Montoya, Albert J. Mortiz, Myrna Mulhern and Leslie Ryan. Details about them and their books are in the bookshop’s blog Archive in March, September and October 2012 .
Owner Linda Nietes of Rancho Palos Verdes is “glad to be part of the cultural scene of the City of Los Angeles all these years. She is also happy that she has helped create more awareness for the Filipino literary traditions in America.” Philippine Expressions, her specialty bookshop was established in Los Angeles in 1984 in order to provide a home for Philippine writings in America. It is the first of its kind in American soil and is dedicated to Filipino Americans and Filipinos in the diaspora who are in search of their roots. When martial law was declared in the Philippines in 1972 and Philippine writings were censored, Linda Nietes bravely opened Casalinda Bookshop, her first Filipiniana bookshop in San Antonio Plaza, Forbes Park, Makati. Her aim was to encourage Filipinos to write despite political censorship and to provide a home for Philippine writings during that period. After twelve years of giving support to Philippine writings and living in a repressive society under martial law, she left for the United States in 1984 and reopened her business as Philippine Expressions Bookshop in Westwood Village near UCLA. Two years later in 1986, dictator Ferdinand Marcos was deposed but Nietes decided to stay on. In 1997, she moved to Rancho Palos Verdes where her home-based mail order bookshop still operates. Counting the years when she opened her first bookshop, Nietes has been a bookseller and cultural activist for the last forty-one years, of which 29 years were on American soil. Before becoming a Philippine book specialist, she worked for the world’s biggest stock market brokerage firm in Hong Kong. When the company opened its Regional Office in Manila, she was transferred to Manila as the Operations Manager. When martial law was declared in the Philippines, she opted for an early retirement so that she could help her country in crisis. She found her niche in the book business. Looking back, “it has not been an easy journey but it was a mission that I undertook gladly,” Nietes added. She had been exposed to the ups and downs of the US stock market and in risk-taking, so she took everything in stride. Today, the book market all over the world is undergoing tremendous challenges due to new technologies and innovative methods of doing business. And this trailblazer looks forward to retirement soon.
She further added, “the Bookshop continues to seek the support of the community as we present new programs that make a difference in the cultural life of Filipinos in the diaspora. Please support Filipino American authors as they try to find their place in the literary map of mainstream America! Inspire our authors with your presence and have a book autographed for your private library when you visit us at the Festival. Do come and bring your family and friends.” If you are unable to visit but would like to purchase autographed copies of their books, the Bookshop accepts orders. The booth of Philippine Expressions Bookshop is Booth # 033, located at Trousdale Parkway, along Exposition Boulevard at USC Campus, Los Angeles. For more details, visit the Festival’s website: http://events.latimes.com/festivalofbooks/general-information/ For maps and direction to USC Campus, visit http://visit.usc.edu/maps-directions/
To Celebrate the Printed and Spoken Words
and to launch ten new works by Filipino American Authors
Ofelia V. Dirige & Aurora S. Cudal, Rachelle Cruz, Cecilia Gaerlan,
Theodore S. Gonzalves, Greceila Jota, Paulino Lim, Jr., Carina Monica Montoya,
Donna Miscolta, Ruben Nepales, Quirico S. Samonte and Susan Vance, guest author
Friday, April 20, 2012 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Community Hall, Asian Pacific American Legal Center
1145 Wilshire Boulevard, corner Lucas Street, Los Angeles, CA 90017
Free and Open to the Public. RSVP is requested. (310) 514-9139
Free parking available at the rooftop of APALC building after 5:30pm. There is also street parking; additional parking for a fee is available at Good Samaritan parking structure next to the APALC building. Entrances to both APALC and GS parking are on Lucas.
Authors and their Books
The following authors will talk and read from their book (s). There will be booksigning sessions during Authors Night and at our Booth # 024 during the LA Times Festival of Books at USC Campus, April 21-22. Please refer to Booksigning Schedule posted in this blog. Do come and join us to Meet and Greet our Fil Am Authors. Your presence means support for their creative talents and it will be a source of inspiration to them.
Ofelia V. Dirige and Aurora S. Cudal are co-authors of Global Filipino Cuisine: Healthy Recipes. This is a revised edition of their 2009 book which was published with the late Dr Riz A. Oades. It now contains 100 modified choices complete with nutrient analysis, and the book is the authors’ contribution to healthy eating in the Filipino American community.
Rachelle Cruz is from Hayward, California. Her chapbook, Self-Portrait as Rumor and Blood was recently published by Dancing Girl Press. Her work has appeared in Muzzle Magazine, Splinter Generation, KCET’s Departures Series, Inlandia: A Literary Journey, among others. She hosts “The Blood-Jet Writing Hour” Radio Show on Blog Talk Radio. An Emerging Voices Fellow, a Kundiman Fellow and a VONA writer, she lives and writes in Riverside, California.
Cecilia Ilano Gaerlan is a multi-awarded Bay Area playwright and author of several plays on a wide variety of topics. In Her Mother’s Image is her debut novel. A long-awaited journey back to the land of her birth unleashed the floodgates of Chiquita’s painful childhood memories of World War II in the Philippines. The book has been adopted for a screenplay.
Theodore S. Gonzalves, Ph. D. is an Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of Maryland in Baltimore County. His two latest books are The Filipinos in Hawaii (part of the Series on Images of America and co-authored with Roderick N. Labrador) which captures in black and white the history of Filipinos in the islands and how they became “Hawayanos” over time, and Carlos Villa and the Integrity of Spaces which is a definitive work on the artist, educator, curator and author. This book ensures Villa’s rightful place in the art and cultural history of America. His other books include Stage Presence: Conversations with Filipino American Performing Artists and The Day the Dancers Stayed: Performing in the Filipino/American Diaspora .
Greceila Jota. Popularly known as Grace, she holds a masters degree in Education and a Diploma in Theology. Along with her husband of thirty-one years, she is a Bible Study leader. Her book, The Deliverer is her first novel. It is about love, materialism, and challenges faced by unbelievers, rich and famous. It exposed a love triangle between Dun Rosenberg, a prominent Jew turned atheist, and his son, Alex. Both fell in love with Phyllis, who was engaged to be married to Brad Dennison, a church minister. Tragedy came, but once we allow deliverance to begin, we never know where it will end. Author lives in Sydney, Australia.
Carina Monica Montoya. Her latest book is Santa Maria Valley (part of the series, Images of America) which she co-authored with the Santa Maria Valley Historical Society. The book has made mention of the Filipino farm workers who have worked on the rich agricultural fields of this Valley. Also known as Carina Forsythe, her other books include Los Angeles’ Historic Filipinotown; Filipinos in Hollywood and a juvenile cookbook, Let’s Cook Adobo!
Donna Miscolta has received many awards and her fiction has appeared in literary journals. Her short story collection Natalie Wood’s Fake Puerto Rican Accent was a finalist for the 2010 Grace Paley Prize for Short Fiction. Her debut novel, When the De la Cruz Family Danced is an all-familiar story of how immigrants carry the heavy burdens of family life in America, welding the past into the present. You will love the journey of the De la Cruz family.
Ruben Nepales’ “deftly-written stories of Filipino-American personalities, The Philippines in Hollywood showcase his masterful craft of writing. It comes from his persistent, disciplined, dogged hard work of interviews and honed by his writing experience of more than three decades. This book takes you on a global journey with these mostly Filipino-American talents that include an executive chef in the White House. In his pieces, Ruben reveals their gentle spirits which mirror his generosity of spirit as well.” – Prosy Abarquez-Delacruz, J.D. Columnist, Asian Journal Press and writer, Balikbayan Magazine –
Quirico S. Samonte. He is a Professor Emeritus, Eastern Michigan University, and a graduate of the University of the Philippines and the University of Michigan. His book of fiction, Panagani means harvest time in Ilocano. It is about ordinary people who try to make sense of their fears and frustrations, bound to injustices committed by rich agrarian landlords and the corrupt political system that exists. Since many Filipinos today still suffer the same fate, this is almost the story of Filipinos living in the countrysides. His other books include At the Table with the Family, and Not at the Table, Please! Both books of narratives about growing up in the Philippines are entertaining, and were illustrated by his wife, Judy.
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