On Monday, Oct. 15, on the last day of the observance of Hispanic Heritage Month, Crossed Genres Publications of Somerville, Mass., releases Sabrina Vourvoulias’ novel, “Ink,” a fictional look at what happens when rhetoric about immigrants escalates to an institutionalized population control system. (To read a portion of the first chapter and order on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Ink-Sabrina-Vourvoulias/dp/0615657818/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1350269229&sr=1-1&keywords=ink+by+sabrina+vourvoulias)
The near-future, dark speculative novel opens as a biometric tattoo is approved for use to mark temporary workers, permanent residents and citizens with recent immigration history - collectively known as inks. This “chilling tale of American apartheid, and the power of love, myth and community” (Reforma: The National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking) has its main characters grapple with ever-changing definitions of power, home and community, and perceptions of “otherness” based on ethnicity, language, class and inclusion.
Set in a fictional city and small, rural town in the U.S. during a 10-year span, the novel is told in four voices: a journalist; an “ink” who works in a local population control office; an artist strongly tied to a specific piece of land; and a teenager whose mother runs an inkatorium (a sanitarium-internment center opened in response to public health concerns about inks). Vourvoulias, of Guatemalan-American descent and the managing editor of Philadelphia’s largest Spanish-language newspaper, Al Día, has described the characters as “complicated people in complicated times trying to live their lives as best they can. You know, us.”
“Readers will be moved by this call for justice in the future and the present.” (Publishers Weekly)
“The conflict driving the novel will fill readers with dismay, seeing parallels between what has already taken place—Japanese locked in concentration camps, narcos controlling swaths of territory in Mexico, rednecks with power—and the novel’s permutations of today’s ugly commonplaces.” (Michael Sedano, La Bloga)
“In Ink, Vourvoulias masterfully weaves an increasingly complex parallel universe at once fantastical and eerily familiar: a not-so-farfetched future world where myth and legend cohabit with population control schemes, media cover-ups, and subcutaneous GPS trackers.” (Elianne Ramos, the vice chair of Latinos in Social Media – LATISM)
Ink’s publication is part of Crossed Genres’ commitment to bringing new and underrepresented voices into fiction. CG’s list of publications include Daniel José Older’s “Salsa Nocturna;” Kelly Jennings’ “Broken Slate;” RJ Astruc’s “A Festival of Skeletons;” as well as the anthologies “Subversion,” “Fat Girl in a Strange Land” and the upcoming “Menial: Skilled Labor in SF.”
For more information about “Ink,” or any of Crossed Genres’ titles, contact Bart Leib at 617- 335- 2101 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.