It’s “Please-Look-at-Me” Time Again

My third book of fiction Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories comes out this fall from Jaded Ibis Press and the please-look-at-me part of being a writer has begun. It started with my publisher asking for blurbs on my behalf. It’s a big thing to ask, given that it’s a request for someone’s time. It’s also a request for that person’s name. Two gigantic asks, so I’m hugely grateful for the blurbs that have come in so far.

That first please-look-at-me step of asking for blurbs leads to others like this one: sharing the blurbs to start convincing you months before the book is available that you should put it on your own personal “most anticipated” list.

Ivelisse Rodriguez, the author of Love War Stories, a finalist for the 2019 Pen/Faulkner Award, encapsulated so well my intent for the book.

“We have all been Angie Rubio, voiceless, rejected, but always on the precipice of being more. Throughout this endearing collection, you will become more than a reader, you will become Angie’s champion until the world she inhabits catches up. Miscolta writes with heart for all the brown girls who feel invisible. These stories say with love and sincerity: I see you.”

On the topic of feeling invisible, please don’t let Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories be invisible. Let it be seen the way Angie Rubio becomes seen in the book. For instance, when she is told in the fourth grade that she’s in the dumb class and she stands up to create even a tiny moment of mayhem in rebellion. Or when her white nemesis, cast as Juliet in the school play, taunts Angie with “Don’t forget who the heroine of this play is,” and Angie replies: “She dies in the end.” Or any number of similar acts of defiance that may seem small but in fact are lifesavers. Be a champion for Angie!

Somiah Kamal is the author of two books of fiction, An Isolated Incident and Unmarriageable, both of which have garnered acclaim. Her first sentence is a precise list of the themes of Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories.

“Donna Miscolta has written a captivating short story collection on identity, alienation, belonging and the meaning of friendship and family. Miscolta carefully and delicately layers the moments and memories that go into making a life and a person. Angie Rubio will carve a space in your heart and, long after you’ve turned the last page, you’ll be rooting for her, for all the Angie Rubios out there.”

Who hasn’t felt alienated and friendless? And there it is again, a prediction that Angie will inspire your support, your cheers, your applause. Like when she carries the class play even though she doesn’t have an acting role. Or when she takes the microphone to give a rousing speech about sex. Root for Angie!

Kathleen Alcalá is the author of six, yes six, books, including Spirits of the Ordinary. Her work has garnered awards and high praise. She boils Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories down to its essence.

“Angie Rubio shows us how to survive as a smart girl-of-color in a world gone mad during the 1960s. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be glad the selfie had not yet been invented.”

Angie is all about survival in the face of microaggressions, lost opportunities, and closed doors. But do laugh with her. Cry with her. Experience with her the humiliation of being shut down in her attempt to share a civil rights story for Current Events. Share her relief at her surrender to the multiple Catholic school eyes upon her sins. And, yes, be glad that she was never able to record a selfie of the home permanent her aunt inflicted upon her unsuspecting head. Angie survives it all.

Yay for smart girls of color!

Yay for readers who support smart girls of color!

Look for Living Color: Angie Rubio Stories in fall 2020!

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