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Lit Chat with Aliete Guerrero and Cheryl Leutjen

  • Catamaran Literary Reader 1050 River St. studio #118 Santa Cruz United States (map)

Lit Chat with Aliete Guerrero and Cheryl Leutjen

Join us for a reception and conversation with two Catamaran contributors based in Los Angeles. Aliete Guerrero will be talking about her debut novel Blue Nestira, a novel she originally workshopped with us at the Catamaran Writing Conference, which has just come out this March. Catamaran nature poetry contributor Cheryl Leutjen will also join us to talk about her nonfiction book Love Earth Now.

Lit Chat is at the Catamaran Literary Reader studio #118, and is part of First Friday open studios at the Tannery Arts Center. Books will be available for purchase and author signing.

6:00 - 6:30 reception
6:30 - 7:00 reading and conversation with the authors
7:00 - 7:30 book signings

Book description:  

Blue Nestira A Novel of Music and Intrigue from Brazil...

Sofia de Menezes, a twenty-six-year-old opera singer from Rio de Janeiro, had her career cut short with the death of her beloved fiancé. Now years later, she gets another chance to shine on the Met stage by entering into a contract with an opera manager named Didier Guisan. He turns out to be a master at carving a path that will make Sofia the world’s number one diva for as long as he owns her voice, body, and desires. Will she agree to a complete metamorphosis to become Didier’s dazzling diva? Will Sofia give up her cultural heritage to fit into the fast and sleek new world Didier has to offer and achieve her dream? Will she give up the life of her unborn child to realize her greatest desire? Two years later, on the cusp of stardom in Brazil, the convicted killer of her fiancé escapes from prison and makes an appearance during the most important performance of her career. Will Sofia’s life be cut short? His intent is clear, he wants Sofia dead. 

Author Bio:

Aliete comes from coffee, coconut water, and mango juice. She comes from soccer, samba, and Carnival. Growing up in a dictatorship in Brazil inspired her to come to the United States in search of freedom. Writing is her calling, and she carries her notebook and pen wherever she goes. She also loves classical music, taking long power walks, and being in nature with her writers group. Aliete’s work has appeared in Catamaran Literary Reader and Chicago Quarterly Review, among other publications. Her writings grapple with complex emotions. Her prose is lyrical, dark, and sometimes funny. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Henry, her youngest son, Chris, and her cat, Derrick Rose.

Book Description:


 This is your go-to guide for discovering what you can do to effect meaningful change, starting right now. Author Cheryl Leutjen’s book of planetary self-help is a deeply thoughtful, often neurotic, and sometimes comedic exploration of her own efforts to make an eco-contribution. Through personal observation, that she records in stunningly beautiful prose, Leutjen’s ode to our planet is one of the most distinctive ecological books to come along in a generation. Each chapter concludes with a “Love Earth Invitation,” a simple and immediate exercise to prompt you to explore your own feelings and calls to action. These eco-mindfulness moments provide the opportunity to reflect and discover what you can do right now that will mean more to the world than all that power and influence can buy.

Author Bio:

Cheryl Leutjen’s deep love of Earth, as well as her hope for a bright future for her children, fuel her passion for responding to the challenges of our time with heart, hope, humor, and spiritual practice. Cheryl writes to share her experiences about on the razor’s edge between Earth-mindfulness and eco-madness, not because she’s got it all figured out, but in solidarity with anyone else who’s fumbling along the path of more conscientious living. She draws from her experience as a geologist, attorney, small business owner, spiritual practitioner, over-analyzing-everything Gemini, Midwestern childhood, Los Angeles transplant, wife and mother to claw her way out of the abyss of eco-despair. She seeks solace from the sages in Nature who reveal the wisdom she needs to navigate a more Earth-loving path.