Reverse-Gentrification of the Literary World

Akashic Books

||| |||

January 2015 News & Features

“8 Up” by Mori Glaser

Inkspot Hurricane’s eyes light up when I walk in. We go way back—I used to play music to his poetry on the folk scene. He was a slight man with a big voice, called Inkspot after the singing group, good name for a poet. I don’t recall how Hurricane came about . . .

Spotlight on Young DFW Writers

To celebrate the release of Starve the Vulture — the latest release in Akashic’s Kaylie Jones Books imprint — we’re pleased to bring you a spotlight on author Jason Carney’s Young DFW Writers program written by Laura Roach.

“Sugar” by Dahlia Ge’ez

Unconsciously, I drove toward the ever-expanding bakery with its extra-filled jelly donuts and rum–drenched chocolate cakes smothered in white, flaky coconut frosting . . .

“Night” by Matt Conte

The lights went out. His parents always turn the light out, even though he asks if they can stay on. The lights went out, and his room transformed. The posters on his walls disappeared underneath a blanket of darkness. The bed gradually seemed further and further from the ground. The lights went out, and the monsters came out to play . . .

“The Junkie Incident” by Robert Burke Warren

It was a normal stay-at-home dad day for me. I was chatting with tall, thirty-something Dominique, broad-shouldered in a sundress, big hands like fluttering pigeons. She was paying her daughter’s college tuition by watching a pair of three-year-old twin boys whose parents sold antiques in the West Village. Dominique held my attention and that of a couple of moms—Juliet, a single bartender, and Sage, an erstwhile graphic designer whose husband renovated brownstones. They each had a toddler. As usual, I was the only dad in the park. But caregiver-ship trumped gender. I was, essentially, one of the gals . . .

“Humboldt Park” by Kevin Kilroy

Because of the incessant drumming on congas, radios blasting salsa or narcocorridos. Because flatbed trucks pull up and sell watermelon, cantaloupe, bananas, grapes off the back. Because there is nothing as nice as a nap in the grass while watching a woman walk past. Because plantains fry nice, pork’s sabor when slow-cooked in its own fat, rice and beans is enough in the stomach to drink all day. Because lengua, sesos, and chicharrones are a taste acquired by those nostalgic for elsewhere. Because life is glorious when there is so much on the line. Because it was winter. Because the blue-sky illusion of warmth persuaded me to go to Humboldt Park that day. To visit Umberto, as Jose Luis tipped me to do, as he served breakfast tacos where North Avenue intersects with California . . .