Book Launch: Juan Alvarado Valdivia | Ballad of a Slopsucker

Wednesday, February 27, 7:30pm
Pegasus Books Downtown

Pegasus Books Downtown welcomes Juan Alvarado Valdivia (¡Cancerlandia!: A Memoir) to launch his short story collection, Ballad of a Slopsucker. Joining him in conversation is journalist and author Edward Guthmann (Wild Seed), a former long-time film critic at the San Francisco Chronicle.




A young widower visits Chichén Itzá to honor his wife; family dynamics unravel at a child’s birthday party; the lead singer of a high school metal band faces his dreaded tenth reunion; a serial killer believes he’s been blessed by God to murder bicycle thieves—Alvarado Valdivia’s debut collection of short stories ranges from dark to light and is written with a storyteller’s skill and compassion. Based in Northern California and examining a variety of themes, including love, family, and masculinity, these stories offer an important new perspective on the experiences of Latinos and Latinas in the United States and complicate ideas of nationhood, identity, and the definition of home.


“This book should have its place on the shelves of any Latino literature collection.”—Daniel Chacón, author of Hotel Juárez: Stories, Rooms and Loops

“With sharp observation and compassion, Juan Alvarado Valdivia brings to high relief contemporary lives of Latinos searching for meaning in California’s cities, towns, and barrios. Ballad of a Slopsucker is a rich debut collection.”—Daniel A. Olivas, author of The King of Lighting Fixtures: Stories

“Juan Alvarado Valdivia has become an exciting new voice in contemporary Latino and American literature. With heart and wisdom and in prose that gleams with energy, heart, and intelligence, Alvarado Valdivia showcases his talent as a truly original—and necessary—storyteller.”—Alex Espinoza, author of The Five Acts of Diego León: A Novel

“Written with a clear eye for detail and a sharp ear for dialogue, and always with deep empathy, Ballad of a Slopsucker is a book you won’t soon forget.”—Lysley Tenorio, author of Monstress: Stories

“In true Califas style, Alvarado Valdivia offers us the collision of the profane and the poignant, the adrenaline of living on the edge and the sometimes comic absurdity of regret.”—Manuel Muñoz, author of The Faith Healer of Olive Avenue: Stories

Event date: 
Wednesday, February 27, 2019 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
Pegasus Books Downtown
2349 Shattuck Ave
Berkeley, CA
Ballad of a Slopsucker: Stories Cover Image
ISBN: 9780826360571
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: University of New Mexico Press - February 15th, 2019

Event Category: