June 20, 2012
Amazon | BN
Magdalena de la Cruz breezed through Berkeley and built an empire selling designer water. She’d never felt awkward or unattractive… until she moved to Los Angeles. In L.A., where “everything smells like acetone and Errol Flynn,” Magdalena attempts to reinvent herself as a geographically appropriate bombshell—with rhinestones, silicone and gin—as she seeks an escape from her unraveling marriage and the traumatic death of her younger brother, Junah. Magdalena’s Los Angeles is glitzy and glamorous but also a landscape of the absurd. Her languidly lyrical voice provides a travel guide for a city of make-believe, where even Hollywood insiders feel left out.
Like a lane change on the 405 freeway during rush hour, Bridget Hoida skillfully navigates the impossible. In So L.A.Hoida offers both a satirical and sympathetic portrait of contemporary Los Angeles through the penetrating prose of her female protagonist. Evoking a dynamic and materialist landscape, So L.A. introduces readers to the unforgettable voice of an extremely talented new writer.
Literary Tour Post:
Some might say, that beyond the sun-struck streets of the Sunset Strip, or the well worn glitter-specked cement of Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles is best known for its cantankerous traffic. And this is mostly true. The freeways of L.A. shift and snake their way across the city like congested arteries. But what’s surprising is that even when stuck in rush hour (which has no real set hour, but rather runs all day and well into the night, because in L.A. everyone is always in a rush to go someplace they’re already not…) even when stuck, bumper to bumper, Angelinos do manage to have a little fun. Like in this true-to-life excerpt from Bridget Hoida’s So L.A.:
WHEN WE first moved to L.A. my favorite thing to say was, That’s so L.A. I used it to describe just about everything from fake boobs to traffic. Then I got implants and started to drive. Drive not to go someplace, but as sport. On the 10 you can pick out the regulars from the tourists. Those who merge left just before the lane ends and then have to merge back right again versus those who know the La Brea shortcut: exit but don’t ever get off. During a crunch you can save five minutes plus if there’s a pile-up. My favorite time to drive is early morning and right before dark. I like the added thrill of the sun in your eyes. It throws mirage into the game and the DJs are at their prime.
Sig alert on the Santa Monica Freeway West, the Shady Lady hums through my speakers. Since nobody’s going anywhere anyhow I’ll take caller number nine for some naked rush hour bingo.
I kid you not. Bingo. Naked. In rush hour.
Shady Lady here. Name, make and license plate, please.
Oh hi-yee! I’m Alyson, with a y, and I’m in a silver 325i on the 10 West, wearing pink and black—
Which, as you may realize, is the physical description of a gazillion people on the 10, but everyone plays along.
Okay listeners we’re on the prowl for a silver Beemer license 1MY325I. If you see her, honk. And Alyson, you know the rules: you lose a piece of clothing for every honk you hear.
As if there isn’t enough honking on the 10. As if taking your clothes off while stuck in traffic weren’t so L.A.
To read more about Magdalena, the six-foot tall blonde protagonist of So L.A. , and her adventures in love, loss, infidelity and self transformation in Los Angeles pick up a copy of So L.A.
About The Author:
Bridget Hoida lives and writes in Southern California. In past lives she was a librarian, a DJ, a high school teacher and a barista. In this life she experiments with poetry and fiction and has taught writing at UC Irvine, the University of Southern California, and Saddleback College. Bridget is the recipient of an Anna Bing Arnold Fellowship and the Edward Moses prize for fiction. She was a finalist in the Joseph Henry Jackson/San Francisco Intersection for the Arts Award for a first novel and the William Faulkner Pirate’s Alley first novel contest. Her short stories have appeared in the Berkeley Fiction Review, Mary, and Faultline Journal, among others, and she was a finalist for the Iowa Review Fiction Prize and in the Glimmer Train New Writer’s Short Story Contest. Her poetry has earned her recognition as an Academy of American Poets Prize finalist and she was a Future Professoriate Scholar at USC. She has a BA from UC Berkeley, MA in fiction from San Francisco State University, and a Ph.D. in Literature & Creative Writing from the University of Southern California.
a Rafflecopter giveaway