“The blend of serious and surreal, full-length and fact list, and old and new results in a fuller picture of the Los Angeles area than perhaps any one author could have ever created alone — and in a very inviting way.”— Colin Newton, The Argonaut
“… a comprehensive embrace of the city that has always resisted comprehension.” — Paul Mandelbaum, L.A. Review of Books
“Genius!” — Chris Nichols, Los Angeles Magazine
“Best damn literary curating I’ve seen in a long time!” — Doug Stokes, lacar.com
“…brings a new dimension to the city’s literary canon” — Mike Sonksen, KCET
From The Argonaut newsweekly April 16, 2019 “Los Angeles on a Clear Day”
“Paperback L.A. is one writer’s attempt to combat misrepresentations of an often-misread city.” By Colin Newton
“Any city that’s interesting enough to attract visitors attracts shortsighted comments or wrongheaded praise,” says Susan LaTempa. “We feel it very much as Angelenos because we’re such a popular destination for writers over the years.”
LaTempa is the series editor of “Paperback L.A.,” an anthology that attempts to create a more comprehensive picture of the city through book excerpts, short stories, photo essays and other observational writing…
The blend of serious and surreal, full-length and fact list, and old and new results in a fuller picture of the Los Angeles area than perhaps any one author could have ever created alone — and in a very inviting way. Readers have often reported seeking out the complete form of some of the excerpted works, LaTempa says.
From Los Angeles Review of Books “Reading List: Paperback L.A.” March 14, 2019 by Paul Mandelbaum
In contrast to its thematic or canonical cousins, this three-volume creation is likened by editor Susan LaTempa to both a patio party or a cabaret– though it could also be seen as an excellent mix tape made by the friend you never realized had a crush on you. Curated here are a wide assortment of deep cuts… Full-color photography…printed on lush stock makes the trilogy’s physical presence coffee-table suitable, and every intro is written with poetic flair…Together they offer a comprehensive embrace of the city that has always resisted comprehension.” ______________________________________________________________________________________
From Westways magazine March/April 2019
“L.A. By the Book”
“With short stories, novel excerpts, other writings, and photos, Paperback L.A., A Casual Anthology aims to ‘keep refreshing the guest list at the patio party so the conversation about L.A. stays lively and thought-provoking,’ writes editor Susan LaTempa. The second book in the series features several essays that first appeared in Westways, including Colleen Dunn Bates’s “My Father’s Malibu,” about her dad’s days surfing around Point Dume. Read it and you can almost feel the salty sea air wafting through that party on the patio.”
From LACar.com article “Paperback Reader.” February 18, 2019
An online automotive journal serving great L.A. since 1997
“Paperback L.A. is not the story of some booze-soaked LA sleuth (or slut for that matter) but a writing anthology series that effortlessly defies categorization… Here’s the very cool part about these notes on the big city: many of the people that are heard from on these pages are not regularly thought of as cutting-edge chroniclers of things in, about, and around LA (!). And that’s what truly adds flavor, texture and interest here. Understand … I’m not about to buy one of these volumes and send it to my Aunt Francis in Rochester for her to use as any sort of a spiritual or factual guidebook to this city. This one, if not of entirely, is certainly for us here in LA.”
From Bibliocracy Radio
KPFK radio’s weekly books show, Sundays at 5 p.m. on 90.7 FM — subscribe to the podcast on iTunes
Host Andrew Tonkovitch interviews editor Susan LaTempa,
February 10, 2019 about the Paperback L.A. Book 2, A Casual Anthology: Studios. Salesmen. Shrines. Surfspots.
He says: “My guest this week is back with part two of her anthology series meant to make you a committed fan if a “casual” reader of LA’s literary and cultural history, legacy, even current moment. This project must be some kind of a dream come true for editor Susan La Tempa, as her surprising and impressive and fun and eclectic choices delight, along with the telling of our story in a multiplicity of forms: so far, interviews, recipes, short stories, sci fi adventure, literary fiction, essays on the natural and unnatural world, memoir, original art, gorgeous photography and more. I’m talking about, enthusiastically, Paperback LA: A Casual Anthology, out from Prospect Park Books.” Click to listen to the interview here:
From Topanga’s Messenger Mountain News, “New Books for the New Year” December 28, 2018 by Flavia Potenza
“Susan LaTempa’s . . . new paperback anthologies celebrate a wonderfully eclectic and quirky selection of Los Angeles culture and her selections for these two anthologies reflect her knowledge of and love for Los Angeles. . . . Volume One, subtitled “Clothes, Coffee, Crushes, Crimes,” features selections from Eve Babirz, Susan Sontag, Victoria Dailey, and Hector Tobar. It has photo essays, short stories, essays, excerpts from historical documents, selections from memoirs, a collection of one-liners, and a transcript from a Vin Scully broadcast.
Volume Two, “Studios, Salesmen, Shrines, Surf Spots,” features an excerpt from Ray Bradbury’s 1985 novel, “Death Is a Lonely Business,” among other authors. It also includes. . . photo essays on urban cycling culture and urban wild birds, reflections on a vanished Japanese fishing community at Terminal Island, and a recipe for avocados…. In addition to being fascinating and informative, the collections are witty, clever, and just plain fun.”
From L.A. Magazine’s “The Best Books About L.A. of 2018” Dec. 24, 2018 by Chris Nichols
It was a good year for LA-centric non-fiction. Here are some of our faves.
Paperback L.A. edited by Susan LaTempa
“Three rat-a-tat volumes reflecting city life are a little manic, spanning the centuries, cultures, and distant geography of the city. But they feel so alive. The machine-gun assemblage brings together Ray Bradbury, downtown protesters, a recent SNL skit, and a Dodger game that Vin Scully called more than a half century ago, but it all works together to give a sniff and a taste of the mosaic landscape here. Genius.”
From KCET “Best of 2018” Dec. 20, 2018 by Mike Sonksen
From L.A. History to Poetry: 23 Notable Books for 2018
Paperback L.A. Books 1 & 2, Edited by Susan LaTempa. Prospect Park Books.
“The first two books of this eventual [three]-book series move across nearly 200 years of Southern California history. Moving from Native American roots to the Mission era to early Hollywood to race relations in the 1940s to hardcore punk to Dodger baseball and Vin Scully, this series of stories and vintage photos aims to create a new-school anthology. Book One includes Eve Babitz, Paul Beatty, Susan Sontag, Vin Scully, Hector Tobar, and Victor Valle among others and Book Two includes Ray Bradbury, Naomi Hirahara, Wendy Gilmartin and a rare short story by Chester Himes along with several others. The mix of short fiction, architectural criticism, poetry, creative nonfiction, photography, and even a recipe, make these two titles unique among the dozens of anthologies celebrating Literary Los Angeles. Both titles are stand-alone collections but the brief nature of most of the pieces make for quick reads that bring a new dimension to the city’s literary canon.”
From Bibliocracy Radio
KPFK radio’s weekly books show, Sundays at 5 p.m. on 90.7 FM — subscribe to the podcast on iTunes.
Host Andrew Tonkovitch interviews editor Susan LaTempa, June 24, 2018 about the just-published Paperback L.A. Book 1, A Casual Anthology: Clothes. Coffee. Crushes. Crimes.
He says, “I’m a pretty rigorous reader and I learned so much. I was captivated so many stories of which I was not aware. I was introduced to a couple of writers I’m embarrassed to say I did not know.” He describes Book 1 as “gems all carefully curated and put together in a beautiful volume that you’ll be proud to show off and also to read which has visual, fiction, and nonfiction.” Paperback L.A. edited by Susan LaTempa. Click to listen to the interview here:
From Prospect Park Books’ blog June 11, 2018
A report on our book launch at The Last Bookstore and on recent essays from editor and contributors. Click here to read: Paperback L.A. Book 1 Launch- Prospect Park Books.
From Literary Hub- The Best of the Literary Internet
Victoria Dailey’s contribution to Paperback L.A. is selected for Lit Hub’s “New Non-Fiction” highlight on June 8, 2018. Click here to read her article.
HOW LA BECAME A DESTINATION ON THE RARE BOOK TRAIL
IN THE 1930S, BOOKSTORES WERE A HAVEN ARTISTS, ACTORS, AND RACONTEURS
From Shelf Awareness, May 8, 2018
Book News for Pros and Readers.
On our publication date, Paperback L.A.’s video by Matt Kresling is selected for “Booker Trailer of the Day.”
Watch the video: