Literary Salon at Leibnitz University
While in Deutschland to promote the German translation of All Involved (En Den Strassen Die Wut from Rowohlt) at LitCologne 2016, I also had the good fortune to be a guest for the Leibnitz University Literary Salon. Hosted in the city of Hannover by Jens Meyer-Kovac, the evening featured an extended Q&A as well as several readings in German. Male parts for the evening were read by actor Matthias Buss, & female parts were read by Alexandra Martini.
Photography & Audio
Icons, Geniuses, & Mavericks
In August 2015, I was given the opportunity to give a TED talk for TEDxChapmanU (at my alma mater, Chapman University, in Orange, California) about the journey I undertook in order to write All Involved: A Novel of the 1992 L.A. Riots. In it, I reveal how authenticity (when combined with storytelling) made it possible for me to not only own what I have been through, but to connect with the most dangerous man I’ve ever met, a former Latino gang leader in South Central Los Angeles.
An Honor & A Privilege
In early 2016, I was invited to be a guest speaker at a number of International Baccalaureate English and Theatre classes as well as AVID (Advancement Via Individual Direction) classes at Marco Antonio Firebaugh High School in Lynwood—the city in South Central Los Angeles County where much of my novel All Involved is set. Needless to say, this visit held very special meaning for me.
© Erwin Recinos
Message in a Bottle
Evan Skrederstu of UGLARworks puts some finishing touches on a mural created by himself and Christopher D. Brand installed at L’Age d’Or in the 14th arrondissement, Paris’s Chinatown. This piece celebrates the translated French publication of All Involved: a.k.a. Six Jours (Six Days; translated by Nicolas Richard) from Fayard. This brushwork mural features sparrows—from intensely lean & stylized to multi-layered & detailed—carrying a volatile city-in-a-bottle, lit like a molotov cocktail, & on the verge of exploding.
© Laurence Pierrain-Mateudi
Evan Skrederstu of UGLARworks installs a large canvas painting, “It’s My Party & I’ll Kill If I Want To”—created by Christopher Brand, Steve Martinez, & Evan Skrederstu—in the lobby of the Pan Macmillan building in London to celebrate the UK book launch of All Involved. This psychological portrait features a character from the book, Payasa, and depicts a scene in which she attends a party under the influence of PCP in order to find and shoot the young man she believes killed her older brother, Ernesto.
Acrylic on Canvas
Fellow Picador author David Whitehouse (Bed & Mobile Library) hosted a unique pop up art & literary event in East London sponsored by Shortlist Magazine to celebrate the publication of All Involved. Surrounded by art drawing inspiration from Los Angeles & the 1992 riots, the evening included a reading of Trouble’s section in the novel, an audience Question & Answer period, and an extended book signing.
© Charlotte Manners Photography
Art & Lit Event
Ernie's Last Ride
This painting, which depicts the character FREER’s Day 5 tribute to a fallen friend, was commissioned to appear on the endpages of Ecco’s U.S. hardcover edition of my newest novel, All Involved: A Novel of the 1992 L.A. Riots. It is by Evan Skrederstu (with Steve Martinez) of UGLARworks. The intersection in the piece is Norton & Martin Luther King in Lynwood, part of South Central Los Angeles.
© Evan Skrederstu
Acrylic on Wood
The new novel from Ryan Gattis
A propulsive and ambitious novel as electrifying as The Wire, from a writer hailed as the West Coast’s Richard Price—a brutal and mesmerizing epic of crime and opportunity, race, revenge, and loyalty, set in the chaotic streets of South Central L.A. in the wake of one of the most notorious, incendiary, and racially charged trials of the 1990s, involving the severe beating of a civilian black man and three white LAPD officers.
At 3:15 p.m. on April 29, 1992, a jury acquitted two Los Angeles Police Department officers charged with using excessive force to subdue civilian Rodney King, and failed to reach a verdict on the same charges involving a third officer. Less than two hours later, the city of LA, a powder keg of racial tension, exploded in violence as people took to the streets in a terrifying orgy of rioting that lasted six days.
A gritty and cinematic work of fiction, All Involved vividly re-creates this turbulent and terrifying time, set in a sliver of Los Angeles largely ignored by the media during the riots. Ryan Gattis tells seventeen interconnected first-person narratives that paint a portrait of our prejudices, and our complexities. With characters that capture the voices of gang members, firefighters, graffiti kids, and nurses caught up in these extraordinary circumstances, this edgy writer catapults into the ranks of such legendary talents as Dennis Lehane and George V. Higgins.