Showing posts with label Bronx. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bronx. Show all posts

Friday, April 28, 2017

#FridayReads: The Leavers by Lisa Ko

The Leavers by Lisa Ko 

Book description:

“The Leavers is courageous, sensitive, and perfectly of this moment.” —Barbara Kingsolver 

 An emotionally harrowing debut novel that explores assimilation and loss, immigration and homeland, independence and connection. 

One morning, Deming Guo’s mother, an undocumented Chinese immigrant named Polly, goes to her job at the nail salon and never comes home. No one can find any trace of her. With his mother gone, eleven-year-old Deming is left with no one to care for him. He is eventually adopted by two white college professors who move him from the Bronx to a small town upstate. They rename him Daniel Wilkinson in their efforts to make him over into their version of an “all-American boy.” But far away from all he’s ever known, Daniel struggles to reconcile his new life with his mother’s disappearance and the memories of the family and community he left behind.

Set in New York and China, The Leavers is a vivid and moving examination of borders and belonging. It’s the story of how one boy comes into his own when everything he’s loved has been taken away--and how a mother learns to live with the mistakes of her past.

This powerful debut is the winner of the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Prize for fiction, awarded by Barbara Kingsolver for a novel that addresses issues of social justice.

 About the Author 

Lisa Ko’s fiction has appeared in Best American Short Stories 2016, Narrative, Copper Nickel, the Asian Pacific American Journal, and elsewhere. She has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Writers OMI at Ledig House, the Jerome Foundation, and Blue Mountain Center, among others. A founding coeditor of Hyphen and a fiction editor at Drunken Boat, Ko was born in Queens and lives in Brooklyn.

Monday, January 07, 2013

New Book: My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor

English: Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Supreme Court j...
Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Supreme Court justice (Photo: Wikipedia)
My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor is out this month, put this biography on the to-read list.

The first Hispanic and third woman appointed to the United States Supreme Court, Sonia Sotomayor has become an instant American icon. Now, with a candor and intimacy never undertaken by a sitting Justice, she recounts her life from a Bronx housing project to the federal bench, a journey that offers an inspiring testament to her own extraordinary determination and the power of believing in oneself.

Here is the story of a precarious childhood, with an alcoholic father (who would die when she was nine) and a devoted but overburdened mother, and of the refuge a little girl took from the turmoil at home with her passionately spirited paternal grandmother. But it was when she was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes that the precocious Sonia recognized she must ultimately depend on herself.  She would learn to give herself the insulin shots she needed to survive and soon imagined a path to a different life. 


With only television characters for her professional role models, and little understanding of what was involved, she determined to become a lawyer, a dream that would sustain her on an unlikely course, from valedictorian of her high school class to the highest honors at Princeton, Yale Law School, the New York County District Attorney’s office, private practice, and appointment to the Federal District Court before the age of forty. 

Along the way we see how she was shaped by her invaluable mentors, a failed marriage, and the modern version of extended family she has created from cherished friends and their children. Through her still-astonished eyes, America’s infinite possibilities are envisioned anew in this warm and honest book, destined to become a classic of self-invention and self-discovery.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Bookstores in the Bronx

I decided to look into the bookstore ratio thing a bit more and it seems that in the borough of the Bronx, population 1,373,659 across 42 square miles, the stats are even sadder.

Using the IndieBound Goggle mash-up app, no indie bookstores are located in the Bronx. As seen here:



That one bookstore in the bottom left corner is in Manhattan. So I checked agaisnt Google Business locator in Maps, and I found only 3 major bookstores, some college bookstores and a few Christian retailers.

Contrast that against the total population of the bourough with the fact that "50.7% of the total population were Hispanic or Latino of any race (23.3% of Bronx's population were Puerto Ricans) and at least 524,410 residents were born abroad/overseas, according to Wikipedia.org.

If the Bronx is really on the up and up, I think we need more bookstores in that area.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Culture in El Bronx


It always amazes me how some people, especially those who've migrated to NYC, have never ever set foot in the Bronx, well, except for a Yankees game.

One hand, I understand it the Bronx has gotten a bad historical rap, the South Bronx, most of all.

But for those who are sleeping on the Bronx, wake up and smell the fresh Bustelo brewing. The Boogie Down is on the up and up!

This northern borough's African American & Puerto Ricans residents birthed hip hop and rap, grafitti and breakdancing. All cultural rich art forms that revolutionized urban culture and influenced almost everthing that came afterwards, from music, to clothes, to visual arts, to language, to MTV, poetry and more but enough of the history lesson.

Those who venture northwards will find that the South Bronx has been revitalized, just over the bridge is a span of antiques shops and artists lofts, known as SoBro (or South Bronx). There are poetry reading such as at the Bruckner Bar & Grill and a large poetry/writing comunity.

There are First Nights events:

First Friday at The Bronx Museum of the Arts

"Join The Bronx Museum of the Arts for its free First Friday program, From Salsa & Bachata to Merengue & Son: The Popular Music of Two Islands, featuring live band performances and DJs covering popular musical genres from Cuba and Dominican Republic. A new series launched in September, First Fridays offers film screenings, art performances, music and other special events the first Friday of every month. In conjunction with the festivity, the Museum will offer tours guided by student docents from the Bronx High School of the Visual Arts of Quisqueya Henriquez: The World Outside, a collection of works by the Cuban-Dominican artist currently on display." More info on the site.

And, forget the windows on Fifth, in the Bronx, the Bronx Zoo's Holiday Light show will take your breath away. For those who miss the suburbs and the pretty decorated homes, just drive up Pelham Parkway....

"For three decades, the Garabedian family has decorated their home and yard at 1605 Pelham Parkway North with a handcrafted holiday extravaganza that includes more than 50,000 small lights, religious figures, ballroom dancers, Victorian-era characters, and pop-culture icons. The family, which runs a dressmaking business, crafts the dolls, their costumes, and the stages and props all by hand, only the lights and Christmas tree are bought in a store.

Powered by 37,000 volts, the Christmas House can be seen from blocks away and is a yearly attraction for Bronx residents and others who come to enjoy home-spun Holiday cheer."

Via The Municipal Art Society of New York.

The Bronx has experienced a rebirth and been a home to likes of Don DeLillo, E. L. Doctorow, Edgar Allan Poe, Chaim Potok, Mark Twain, Danny Aiello, Woody Allen, Anne Bancroft, Joey Bishop, Red Buttons, James Caan, George Carlin, Tony Curtis, Stacey Dash, Chazz Palminteri, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Stanley Kubrick, Linda Lovelace, Sonia Manzano, Garry Marshall, Carroll O'Connor, Jerry Orbach, Al Pacino Regis Philbin, Rob Reiner, Neil Simon Mary J. Blige,Diahann Carroll, Grandmaster Caz, Willie Colón Grandmaster Flash, Kool DJ Herc, Fat Joe, Billy Joel, Héctor Lavoe, Jennifer Lopez, KRS-One, Tito Puente, Big Pun, Carly Simon, Regina Spektor, Luther Vandross, Mario Vazquez, Veronica Vazquez, Howard Dean, Ed Koch, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, Colin Powell, Theodore Roosevelt, Eliot Spitzer, Lou Gehrig, Jake LaMotta, and Ralph Lauren just to mention a few.

The apartments buildings on Grand Concourse once again are luxury co-op homes to those smart enough to snatch them up just as did families did once the art deco apts were built.

Those who think the Bronx has nothing to offer them, out to think again, this brimming with culture borough has got it all, class, wit and soul.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Mmmm, Now That's What I'm Talking About!


The growing Latin American presence in baseball is not confined to just the field.

Yankee Stadium recently got a Latin-style food concession called Salsa on the Go. A joint venture of Bronx native Daniel Garcia and Goya Foods, the concession offers Yankees fans the choice of picking up an empanada and plantains between innings, instead of a footlong hotdog or giant pretzel. Garcia, who grew up in Hunts Point a few miles from Yankee Stadium, owns Salsa Catering, where the food for games is prepared at the business's headquarters on 3rd Ave. in the Bronx before delivery to the stadium.

Via Gothamist
I guess the players aren't the only things hot now.
Well, you know what they say, "Si no es Goya..."
 
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