NOLA BOOK AND LITERARY NEWS

from Nathan C. Martin and Friends.
Jesús Ángel García
Jesús Ángel García

badbadbad is the debut novel by Bay Area transmedia artist Jesús Ángel García, who will read at the Antenna Gallery on Saturday, June 25, at 7 p.m., along with poet and essayist Hannah Miet.

badbadbad follows fictional protagonist Jesús Ángel García in the wake of his wife’s leaving him, as he straddles the Southern cultural divide by living a double life. By day, he works as the humble, God-fearing webmaster for First Church of the Church Before Church. At night, he plays the part of sexual messiah on fallenangels, an online social network for extreme desires. Blinded by righteousness, obsession and identity confusion, Jesús refuses to change his path even as it leads to the greatest of sins.

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It started with a hamburger. Whopper, large fries, Diet Coke. No, something with more meat. A political exchange, at the bus stop outside Piggly Wiggly.

“You’re a fan,” I said, pointing at her badge, The President Is the Commander-in-Chief. It was pinned at quarter-thigh where the denim fringe of her Daisy Dukes peeked out like tendrils. This girl was live. 

“The president know what good for us,” she said and I believed her. I gazed at her belly ring, a simple hoop, fake gold, then down to the button fly, unbuttoned, her candy cane triangle below. “We should trust every decision he make. He know right from wrong.”

“I’ll take your word,” I said. “Me, I’m not much into politics.”

“Me neither,” she whispered. “This for work.”

I zoomed in on the red-white stripes of her two-piece. “You’re a lifeguard.”

She poked me in the chest. “Yeah right.”

“Life’s a beach,” I said.

She had never been to the beach, if we’re to believe what she told me, and I don’t see why we shouldn’t. I talked big on my full tank of gas, tried to persuade her to get her feet wet. She insisted she was on the clock.

“You could call it training,” I said. She stared at me with anime eyes. “I’ll drown and you save me.”

“Shut up,” she said, taking my hand in hers.

I was fortune’s son.

Now there’s French fries in her teeth, between her lips, glossed with orange, outlined black like her eyes, and her hair, streaked with fire strands, midnight at the oasis. She glanced up at me, switched the radio to Nelly, rocked her blouse off her shoulder, mocha cream, silk with sweat, pink glitter. Her top too big for her size, I expected she’d tumble out at the next speed bump. I punched the pedal, stopped short at a crosswalk, apologized for the rock ‘n’ roll.

She grinned, digging her fingers into the bag, peeling wax paper from the meat. Her nails were long, slick with swirls. Sparkly letters spelled R-O-Y-A-L on each hand. She bit into the burger with a girlish eyeroll. Her appetite was man-size, her cheeks chipmunked. I’d never before seen such freckles. She was a saint who didn’t know it, hadn’t yet answered the call. A superhero at nineteen, she tagged herself a whore. “I’m just a hoe,” she said.

So naïve, out of practice, I didn’t realize, didn’t let myself know. I pegged her for a bop, that’s all. She was at the bus stop, had never been to the beach. She said she was hungry. At least I could feed her.

Hand-in-Glove Conference Guide

Hand in Glove Conference Guide
Essay by Amy Mackie, edited by Bob Snead, designed by Erik Keisewetter

This beautiful book, designed and printed by Erik Kiesewetter of Constance for the Hand-in-Glove Conference, includes a guide to all of the conference happenings Oct 17-20, 2013, an informative map of the artist run spaces on and around St. Claude Ave, and an extensive essay by Amy Mackie about the history of self organized contemporary art [...]

Photo by Sophie Lvoff in WE'RE PREGNANT

We’re Pregnant
Words by Nathan Martin. Photography by Akasha Rabut, Sophie T. Lvoff, and Grissel Giuliano.

We’re Pregnant is a chapbook of short fiction by Room 220 editor Nathan C. Martin along with photography by Akasha Rabut, Sophie T. Lvoff, and Grissel Giuliano. The book contains three of Martin’s short stories—which explore in morbid fashion anxieties related to sex, disease, marriage, and childbirth—with images inspired by the stories from each of the photographers.

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The People Is Singular
Poems by Andy Young and Photographs by Salwa Rashad

The People Is Singular, by local poet Andy Young and Egyptian photographer Salwa Rashad, is a personal response to the Egyptian Revolution. Rashad’s vision includes everyday people—Muslims and Christians, young and old, the foregrounded and the peripheral. Her perspective is from inside the events as they unfolded. Andy Young, a New Orleans poet married to [...]

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Curtain Optional
by Brad and Jim Richard

In both poetry and prose, Brad Richard explores the influence of his father’s work on his own, as well as the experience of growing up as the son of an artist while becoming an artist himself. Jim Richard is a professor of painting at the University of New Orleans and has exhibited at the Solomon [...]

howtorebuild

How to Rebuild a City
Edited by Anne Gisleson & Tristan Thompson w/ design and artistic direction by Catherine Burke

Beautifully designed, sometimes fun, always informative, How to Rebuild a City: Field Guide from a work in Progress, is a reflection of the many ways that New Orleanians have realized our way towards recovery, actively and creatively engaging with our communities.

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Bitter Ink
by Brian Zeigler & Raymond “Moose” Jackson

BBoth originally from Detroit, cousins Brian Zeigler and Raymond “Moose” Jackson began collaborating while Brian was harboring Moose in Vermont during Katrina evacuation. While their doodling proclivities may have made them rustbelt exiles from the rest of their autoworker family, together they produce seductive aphorisms of wit and weirdness that provoke, confound and celebrate a [...]