Faculty Books


This American Autopsy book by Jose Antonio Rodriguez Boning the Muse: Letters book  to Steve by Eric Miles Williamson
this american autopsy poems
Jose Antonio Rodriguez
Boning the Muse:
Letters to Steve
Eric Miles Williamson
In this powerful collection of free-verse poetry, immigrant, poet, and memoirist José Antonio Rodríguez encapsulates the experiences of an artist and citizen caught between two worlds. At once deeply personal and thematically expansive, these works offer a bracing look at the darker impulses of contemporary America. I remember delaying the gratification for hours, unsealing the envelope only when I knew I had an hour to read it and then re-read it, indulging his excessive observations and outrageous exaggerations set beside the anguished howls of genuine pain.
You will never read anything like this again. Steve, 2018


Ware Conversations book by Jean Braithwaite shallow end of sleep book by Jose Rodriguez
Ware Conversations
Jean Braithwaite
The Shallow end of Sleep
José Antonio Rodríguez
Editor Jean Braithwaite compiles
interviews displaying both Ware’s
erudition and his quirky self- deprecation.
They span Ware’s career from
1993 to 2015, creating a time-lapse
portrait of the artist as he matures.
Several of the earliest talks are
reprinted from zines now extremely 
difficult to locate.
Through these poems, both lyrical and narrative, tender and tense, familiar and estranging, the poet invites us to examine the very concept of home—how we define it, what constitutes it, the ways it can be destabilized and how, in the most trying times, we must learn to sustain the hope of it in our hearts.



backlit_hour book magic_of_mariachi book
Backlit Hour
José Antonio Rodríguez
The Magic of Mariachi 
Steven Schneider
Whether silently coveting the birthday gifts of a privileged classmate, trying to connect with a mother’s ghost-like presence, or interrogating the dehumanizing impulse of an Arizona minuteman, the speaker of these poems often finds himself on the “wrong” side of the border that delineates a space of belonging, marginalized or estranged from his surroundings, observing the Other with a sense of both awe and bewilderment. The Magic of Mariachi / La Magia del Mariachi is a fascinating book that combines two disciplines – art and poetry – creating a treasure of lyrical poetry and strikingly beautiful paintings of mariachi musicians. The twenty four poems, written in English and skillfully translated into Spanish, were created in response to each of the twenty-four works of art in the book.



solstice_emmy_perez borderlines drawing border book
Emmy Perez
Borderlines: Drawing Border Lives
Steven Schneider
Poetry. Latinx Studies. Native American Studies. Women's Studies. Emmy Pérez sings the borderlands between America and Mexico, a contested land where identity and nationality are under constant surveillance. Her poetry forces the reader to feel the persons who live in those lands. Featuring 25 drawings in charcoal, conte crayons, and pastels, this handbook pairs portraits of people who live and work along the U.S.–Mexico border with bilingual poems that have been inspired by each of the drawings. A testimony to the people of the Rio Grande Valley, these drawings and poems capture their spirit, their quest for happiness, and their struggles to overcome economic hardship.



two_up book by Eric Williamson Miles house_built_on_ashes book by Emmy Perez
Eric Miles Williamson
House Built on Ashes
José Antonio Rodríguez
Novels about the blue-collar world are rare: Seldom does someone near the cellar of society escape to tell the tale. Eric Miles Williamson joined the Laborers Union when he graduated from high school in 1979 and spent seven years as a gunite construction worker, witnessing atrocities that don't make the evening news. Two-Up is Williamson's fictional account of a journey through the nightmare of the American labor inferno. Poignant and lyrical, House Built on Ashes contemplates the promises, limitations, and contradictions of the American Dream. Even as it tells a deeply personal story, it evokes larger political, cultural, and social realities. It speaks to what America is and what it is not. It speaks to a world of hunger, prejudice, and far too many boundaries. But it speaks, as well, to the redemptive power of beauty and its life-sustaining gift of hope.

east_bay_grease book by Eric Miles

Robert Paul Moreira
East Bay Grease
Eric Miles Williamson
"Brash, hilarious and sometimes heartbreaking, Robert Paul Moreira's stories are exquisite mini-portraits of lives filled with sex, baseball, movies and small victories. A pure delight." 
​​--Daniel A. Olivas, author of The Book of Want and Things We Do Not Talk About: Exploring Latino/a Literature Through Essays and Interviews​​

"Robert Paul Moreira must be down there on the Rio Grande panning hearts and souls out of that dirty water. He's like a blue-collar Borges, and Scores is a labyrinth of a thing: all twisted with violence and empathy and hallelujahs. I suggest you get all lost in it." 
​--Scott McClanahan, author of Crapalachia and The Sarah Book.
East Bay Grease, Eric Miles Williamson’s now classic first novel, has received worldwide acclaim as one of the great depictions of working-class America in the latter half of the 20th century. The story of T-Bird Murphy, born in the tumultuous 1960s and raised in the ghettoes of Oakland by his mother, who rides with the Hell’s Angels, his father, who is an ex-convict, and the father figures who range from musicians to construction workers, East Bay Grease is a novel of dignity, honor, and courage that has been compared to the works of John Steinbeck, Jack London, and Upton Sinclair.

 fat_the_store_of_my_life book by Jean Braithwaite


early_men book by Britt Haraway
Fat the story of my life with 
my body

Jean Braithwaite
Early Men
Britt Harway
One could not hope for a more engrossing, intelligent and bracingly honest memoir on this problematic subject. I ate it up. 
--Phillip Lopate
As I was whisking my way through Jean Braithwaite's extraordinary memoir, I started writing down all of the reasons I admired it and found it such a joy to read. Here's but a short section of a long list: brilliant, profound, honest, funny, deeply moving, artistic triumph . . . and so on. This is one of the best memoirs I have ever read. --Robert Whitaker

"These moving stories of characters struggling with their own flaws, fighting to right their tilted lives or survive a loved one's loss, are richly imagined, admirably complex, and shine with the subtlety and sensitivity of truly fine writing. But Early Men is more than that. By bravely grappling with the political as well as the personal, Britt Haraway tackles one of literature's most difficult, yet vital, roles and, with this debut, offers us important insights not only about ourselves, but about the wider world in which we live." --Josh Weil, author of Great Glass Sea



  with_the_river_on_our_face book


With the River on Our Face
Emmy Perez
Emmy Pérez’s poetry collection With the River on Our Face flows through the Southwest and the Texas borderlands to the river’s mouth in the Rio Grande Valley/El Valle. The poems celebrate the land, communities, and ecology of the borderlands through lyric and narrative utterances, auditory and visual texture, chant, and litany that merge and diverge like the iconic river in this long-awaited collection.