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      JIA TOLENTINO discusses her debut book of essays TRICK MIRROR in Los Angeles


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      August 15, 2019

      Thursday   7:30 PM

      1818 N Vermont Avenue
      Los Angeles, California 90027

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      JIA TOLENTINO discusses her debut book of essays TRICK MIRROR

       

      Trick Mirror (Random House)

      Jia Tolentino is a peerless voice of her generation, tackling the conflicts, contradictions, and sea changes that define us and our time. Now, in this dazzling collection of nine entirely original essays, written with a rare combination of give and sharpness, wit and fearlessness, she delves into the forces that warp our vision, demonstrating an unparalleled stylistic potency and critical dexterity.

      Trick Mirror is an enlightening, unforgettable trip through the river of self-delusion that surges just beneath the surface of our lives. This is a book about the incentives that shape us, and about how hard it is to see ourselves clearly through a culture that revolves around the self. In each essay, New Yorker writer Jia Tolentino writes about a cultural prism: the rise of the nightmare social internet; the advent of scamming as the definitive millennial ethos; the literary heroine’s journey from brave to blank to bitter; the punitive dream of optimization, which insists that everything, including our bodies, should become more efficient and beautiful until we die.

      Gleaming with Tolentino's sense of humor and capacity to elucidate the impossibly complex in an instant, and marked by her desire to treat the reader with profound honesty, Trick Mirror is an instant classic of the worst decade yet.

      NOTE: As with all Skylight Books in-store events, this reading is free and open to the public (first come, first served). But because we're expecting a large crowd at this event, we'll be giving out numbered tickets to the signing line to keep things organized:

      • To get a ticket to the signing line, you must preorder a copy of Trick Mirror with Skylight Books via our website, over the phone, or in person. The book will become available in the store on August 6, 2019. 
      • For all website orders for this event, be sure to leave a note in the Order Comments field that you would like a ticket and plan to attend the event.
      • Skylight's Friends with Benefits members get priority signing line tickets (and 20% off this and all other event books each month), so be sure to mention your membership (or join) when you order the book.

      Praise for Trick Mirror:

      It's easy to write about things as you wish they were—or as others tell you they must be. It's much harder to think for yourself, with the minimum of self-delusion. It's even harder to achieve at a moment like this, when our thoughts are subject to unprecedented manipulation, monetization and surveillance. Yet Tolentino has managed to tell many inconvenient truths in Trick Mirror— and in enviable style. This is a whip-smart, challenging book that will prompt many of us to take a long, hard look in the mirror. It filled me with hope."—Zadie Smith

      “Jia Tolentino is the best young essayist at work in the United States, one I’ve consistently admired and learned from, and I was exhilarated to get a whole lot of her at once in Trick Mirror. In these nine chapters, she rethinks troubling ingredients of modern life, from the internet to mind-altering drugs to wedding culture. All through the book, single sentences flash like lightning to show something familiar in a startling way, but she also builds extended arguments with her usual, unusual blend of lyricism and skepticism, and in the end, we have a picture of America that was as missing as it was needed.”—Rebecca Solnit, author of Men Explain Things to Me

      “In Trick Mirror, Jia Tolentino’s thinking surges with a fierce, electric lyricism. Her mind is animated by rigor and compassion at once. She’s horrified by the world and also in love with it. Her truths are knotty but her voice is crystalline enough to handle them. She’s always got skin in the game; she knows we all do. Her intelligence is unrelenting and full-blooded, a hear beating inside every critique. She refuses easy morals, false binaries, and redemptive epiphanies, but all that refusal is in the service of something tender, humane, and often achingly beautiful—an exploration of what we long for, how we long for it, and all the stories we tell ourselves along the way.”—Leslie Jamison, author of The Recovering

      There has been such a profusion of "new essayists" writing in English during the past decade, riding the rail between journalism and the personal essay, that the voices can merge into static. I find myself listening out for writers who still find a way to speak from some kind of peculiar interiority, heeding their instincts as much as they do any chatter or feed. One of the finest of these is Jia Tolentino. It has gotten to where, whenever something freaky happens in the socio-cultural sphere, I immediately wonder what she'll have to say about it.  Modern American life, especially as lived online, increasingly takes on qualities of insanity, even nightmare, and Trick Mirror has something profound to say about how that happened.—John Jeremiah Sullivan

      “I worship at the altar of Jia Tolentino, who is undoubtedly the sharpest and most incisive cultural critic alive. Jia is a for-real genius, so damn funny it's absurd, and her ability to cut through all the noise to reveal the heart of the matter is unmatched. What a gift to the universe that, in Trick Mirror, one of the subjects is herself.  This book is a master class in how to think about the world in 2019.”
      —Samantha Irby, author of We are Never Meeting in Real Life

      Jia Tolentino is a staff writer at The New Yorker. Raised in Texas, she studied at the University of Virginia before serving in Kyrgyzstan in the Peace Corps and receiving her MFA in fiction from the University of Michigan. She was a contributing editor at The Hairpin and the deputy editor at Jezebel, and her work has appeared in The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, Time, Grantland, Slate, Bon Apetit, SPIN, Pitchfork, and FADER. She lives in Brooklyn.

      Author Photo by Elena Mudd

       

       

      Categories: Literary & Books

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