facebook

LIVE ON CROWDCAST: CARRIBEAN FRAGOZA discusses EAT THE MOUTH THAT FEEDS YOU with MYRIAM GURBA, co-presented by LARB

*Please note: this event will take place live on Crowdcast. RSVP here to join the livestream or watch the replay.

**Signed bookplates will be available for this book. Select signed copy at checkout to recieve yours!

This event is presented in partnership with the Los Angeles Review of Books

Eat the Mouth That Feeds You (City Lights)

Carribean Fragoza's debut collection of stories reside in the domestic surreal, featuring an unusual gathering of Latinx and Chicanx voices from both sides of the U.S./Mexico border, and universes beyond.

This stunningly original collection of stories illuminates a spectrum of Latinx, Chicanx, and immigrant women's voices. In confrontations with fraught matrilineal lines, absent or abusive fathers, and the effects of historical violence, these women and girls navigate a male-dominated world where they rely on a resilient mujer network to get them through sometimes supernatural obstacles.

In visceral, embodied prose, Fragoza's imperfect characters are drawn with an authentic, sympathetic tenderness as they struggle against circumstances and conditions designed to defeat them. A young woman returns home from college, only to pick up exactly where she left off: a smart girl in a rundown town with no future. A mother reflects on the pain and pleasures of being inexorably consumed by her small daughter, whose penchant for ingesting grandma's letters has extended to taking bites of her actual flesh. A brother and sister watch anxiously as their distraught mother takes an ax to their old furniture, and then to the backyard fence, until finally she attacks the family's beloved lime tree. Victories are excavated from the rubble of personal hardship, and women's wisdom is brutally forged from the violence of history that continues to unfold on both sides of the US-Mexico border.

The daughter of Mexican immigrants, Carribean Fragoza was raised in South El Monte, California. After graduating from UCLA, Fragoza completed the Creative Writing MFA Program at CalArts, where she worked with writers Douglas Kearney and Norman Klein. Fragoza is founder of Vicious Ladies, a new website publishing womxn, queer, and non-binary critics of color. She co-edits UC Press's acclaimed California cultural journal, Boom California, and is also the founder of South El Monte Arts Posse, an interdisciplinary arts collective. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in numerous publications, including Zyzzyva, AltaBOMB, Huizache, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. She is the co-editor of East of East: The Making of Greater El Monte and Senior Writer at the Tropics of Meta. Carribean is the Coordinator of the Kingsley and Kate Tufts Poetry Award at Claremont Graduate University, and she lives in the San Gabriel Valley in LA County.

Myriam Gurba is a queer spoken-word performer, visual artist, and writer from Santa Maria, California. She's the author of Dahlia Season (2007, Manic D) which was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, Wish You Were Me (2011, Future Tense Books), and Painting Their Portraits in Winter (2015, Manic D). She has toured with Sister Spit and her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach. She lives in Long Beach, where she teaches social studies to eighth-graders.

Praise for Eat the Mouth That Feeds You:

"In Carribean Fragoza's weirdly sweet short story collection Eat the Mouth that Feeds You, eyebrows are Sharpie-thin, children say I love you with axes, and dying is an adventure. Her Chicanx gothic tales root horror in the most terrifying of places, the family. The creepiest pockets of the Brown imagination are her playground. Eat the Mouth That Feeds You renders the feminine grotesque at its finest."—Myriam Gurba, author of Mean

"Eat the Mouth That Feeds You is an accomplished debut with language that has the potential to affect the reader on a visceral level, a rare and significant achievement from a forceful new voice in American literature."—Kali Fajardo-Anstine, New York Times Book Review, and author of Sabrina and Corina

"Every story in this luminous collection creates its own lush, beautiful, and utterly singular universe. Carribean Fragoza reaches deep into the bodies and souls of her subjects, and writes about desire and fear like few other writers can. Eat the Mouth That Feeds You will establish Fragoza as an essential and important new voice in American fiction."—Héctor Tobar, author of The Barbarian Nurseries

"The magic realism of Eat the Mouth That Feeds You is thoroughly worked into the fabric of the stories themselves, strung through the warp and weft of family, community, and what it means as a child, as a mother, as a woman, to both belong and not belong. These are powerful stories about making one's way, and about the things that keep a grip on you no matter where you are, even if you're dead."—Brian Evenson, author of Song for the Unraveling of the World

"Fragoza's prose, a switchblade of a magical glow, cauterizes as it cuts. In a setting of barren citrus trees, poison-filled balloons, and stuccos haunted by the menace of the past, Eat the Mouth That Feeds You reinvents the sunny noir."—Salvador Plascencia, author of The People of Paper

About LARB

The Los Angeles Review of Books is a nonprofit, multimedia literary and cultural arts magazine that combines the great American tradition of the serious book review with the evolving technologies of the Web. We are a community of writers, critics, journalists, artists, filmmakers, and scholars dedicated to promoting and disseminating the best that is thought and written, with an enduring commitment to the intellectual rigor, the incisiveness, and the power of the written word.

LARB was created in part as a direct response to the disappearance of the traditional newspaper book review supplement, and with it the great tradition of the comprehensive American book review, dedicated to full-range, long-form coverage of everything from architecture to young adult fiction, academic monographs to genre fiction, from the latest publications to classic texts. In our new, swiftly transforming world of books and publishing, the Los Angeles Review of Books stands for curated, edited, expert, smart and fun opinion written by the best writers and thinkers of our time. We seek to revive, and reinvent, the book review for a new generation.

LARB was created as both a literary and cultural arts magazine, publishing not only traditional long-form essays on books and literature, but also reviews of art, music, theater, and film; exclusive journalism and commentary on key issues of the day; on-location reporting from political hotspots around the nation and worldwide; editorials and commentary on politics, culture and society; audio and video interviews of artists, writers, philosophers and politicians, and much more.

LARB has a prestigious roster of over 250 award-winning writers and contributing editors, as well as over 100 contributing artists. LARB's collective of contributing editors have won Pulitzer Prizes, National and American Book Awards, PEN Awards, and every other kind of distinction. A sample of the Review's contributing editor staff includes T.C. Boyle, Jeffrey Eugenides, Michael Pollan, Barbara Ehrenreich, Kevin Starr, Greil Marcus, James Franco, Manuel Castells, Antonio Damasio, Mike Davis, John Rechy, Reza Aslan, Chris Abani, Joe Sacco, Jonathan Gold, Carolyn See, Janet Fitch, Yiyun Li, Jane Smiley, Christopher Rice, Eric Lax, Richard Prince, and Jonathan Lethem.

Event date: 
Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 6:30pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Eat the Mouth That Feeds You Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780872868335
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: City Lights Books - March 30th, 2021

Mean Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781566894913
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Coffee House Press - November 7th, 2017