Category Archives: Events

September 20 – Paco Ignacio Taibo II, in conversation with Mariana Romo-Carmona


Paco Ignacio Taibo II, a distinguished historian and essayist from Mexico, was part of massive student protest in Mexico City in 1968 during which 200 people were killed by government troops, and many more arrested. The massacre has been omitted from textbooks and formal histories, still to this day denied by the Mexican government.

Taibo will talk with activist and scholar Mariana Romo-Carmona about his experience, taking the long view of the student protests around the world, and the way history is told, repressed, manipulated. An updated edition of his book, ’68: The Mexican Autumn of the Tlatelolco Massacre (español: El otoño Mexicano de la masacre de Tlatelolco) will be available for sale in English and Spanish.

Historian and essayist Paco Ignacio Taibo II, author of more than fifty books, is also renowned worldwide for his detective novels. His numerous literary honors include three Hammett Prizes, a Planeta prize for the best historical novel, and the Bancarella Prize for his biography of Che Guevara. In December 2018, Taibo was named director of the Mexican government’s national publishing house, Fondo de Cultura Economica, by the new Obrador administration.

Mariana Romo-Carmona (@piedrambar) is the author of Living at Night, Speaking Like An Immigrant, and Sobrevivir y otros complejos: Poems in Englillano. A longtime activist in the Latinx and Queer fronts, she produced and hosted the Connecticut LGBT radio program, “There is Another Alternative,” and co-founded Latina lesbian groups in Boston and New York City. She was an editor with Kitchen Table Press and co-edited Cuentos: Stories by Latinas; co-founder and editor, COLORLife! Magazine; editor-translator of Conversaciones; and founder-editor and translator of Escritorial Press. She has taught in the Latin American and Latino Studies Program at CUNY, and in the MFA in Writing Program at Goddard College, for many years.


Paco Ignacio Taibo II, in conversation with Mariana Romo-Carmona
Friday, September 20, 2019
Word Up Community Bookshop
2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.
New York NY 10032


September 12 – Stephanie Jimenez, in conversation with Danielle Lazarin

Stephanie Jimenez will read from her debut novel, They Could Have Named Her Anything, followed by a conversation with Danielle Lazarin.

Every morning, seventeen-year-old Maria Anís Rosario takes the subway an hour from her boisterous and close-knit family in Queens to her private high school on the Upper East Side, where she struggles to fit in as one of the only Latina students—until Rocky welcomes her into this new life. White, rebellious, and ignored by her wealthy parents, Rocky uses her money toward one goal: to get away with anything. . . . A character in its own right, Jimenez’s New York City is full of contradictions, particularly its racial and economic segregation, the stark contrast of its struggling denizens and those extremely wealthy. Her renderings of these characters tell a larger story about the effects of gentrification and are, as Danielle Lazarin (author of Back Talk: Stories) writes of the novel, “a powerful reminder that moving between worlds is rarely free, and that the most valuable educations take place outside the classroom.”

Stephanie Jimenez, in conversation with Danielle Lazarin
Thursday, September 12, 2019
Word Up Community Bookshop
2113 Amsterdam Ave. @ 165th St.
New York NY 10032

September 5 – Book Launch: Dominicana by Angie Cruz

Join us to celebrate the launch of Angie Cruz’s new novel Domincana, the inaugural selection for Word Up’s new program Uptown Reads.


The book launch, co-organized with Dominican Writers Association, will take place at Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center (530 West 166th St.) and will feature a reading by author Angie Cruz, Angie will be introduced by Laura Gomez (Orange is the New Black), who will moderate a Q&A between Angie and actress Coral Peña, audiobook narrator of Dominicana. After the conversation, enjoy some of the food and music that inspired the novel.

Music by DJcensura, and wine and food by Chef Farys of Pop & Pour.

Book Launch: Dominicana by Angie Cruz
Thursday, September 5, 2019
Alianza Dominicana Cultural Center
530 West 166th St.
New York NY 10032

This September 2019, Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria is launching UPTOWN READS, a neighborhood-wide program that celebrates great literature and the community-wide reflection that can come of a shared reading experience. Dominicana by Angie Cruz is the inaugural selection. For more about the program, and to learn how your book club, school, or community group can join and get discounts on the book, visit

June 22 – Femmes of Color in Comix: Reading + Panel

**N.B. This event is taking place at Buunni Coffee Inwood, 4961 Broadway bet. 207th and Isham sts.**
Join us for a comix reading with 4 stellar femmes who are artists of color, followed by a panel on their work, process, and thoughts on the book industry and comix community. Moderated by Stephanie Rodriguez and featuring Kat Fajardo, Robyn Smith, Kelly Fernandez, and Sharon Lee de la Cruz. Suggested donation: $5.
This program is organized by Word Up Community Bookshop in collaboration with Steph Guez, and supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Femmes of Color in Comics: Reading + Panel
Saturday, June 22, 2019

Buunni Coffee
4961 Broadway
New York, NY 10034

June 15 – Word Up’s 8th Birthday Party!

Stop by from 11am to 6pm on Saturday, June 15th for our birthday celebration—there will be food, drinks, and fun. See below for specific activities, and join us at 4:30pm for cake! *Please note that we will be closing at 6pm as usual.*

11am–12pm: Hora del cuento con Alexis Ruginis y Mariel Escalante
¿Dónde está el coquí?
Explora Latinoamérica y el Caribe mientras aprendes sobre animales, verbos y números con el coquí, una ranita cantante de Puerto Rico.
    Explore Latin America and the Caribbean while learning about animals, verbs, and numbers with the coquí, a small singing frog from Puerto Rico.
1–2pm: Why Are Our Skin Colors So Different?: Interactive Mask-Making Workshop 
Recommended for ages 6–9. RSVP requested (includes $5 materials fee):
When your child begins to observe differences in skin color, don’t their questions warrant straight-forward responses? Jyoti Gupta’s book does just that by introducing skin color to children in a healthy way. Different Differenter: An Activity Book about Skin Color takes you on a playful discovery to find answers that work for your family—while thoughtfully introducing facts and boundary-setting words. Anti-bias and diversity educators are calling it “provocative and sensitive,” “a culturally-relevant discussion guide,” and “positive and nonjudgmental.”
Join the author for an interactive, hands-on, mask-making workshop. Your child will participate in a discussion about skin colors, learn about adaptation, a process that began 10,000 years ago, and enjoy making a mask. The idea is to create a participatory, active learning environment where they can co-create messaging about skin colors.
Jyoti Gupta is a multi-disciplinary practitioner-scholar, social-justice media maker, and a media-literacy educator. Her independent work on the subject of colorism has garnered support from parents, scholars, elementary schools educators. She has represented her work at TEDxWomen and Jaipur Literary Festival, South Asia’s largest literary event.
2:30–4pm: Dominican Writers Book Club in collaboration with Word Up: Soledad
Dominican Writers is convening a new book club! In anticipation of Angie Cruz’s Dominicana, which is forthcoming in September 2019, DW and Word Up are teaming up for the June selection: Soledad by Angie Cruz. Bring your copy, or purchase one at the shop or at While you are at it, preorder a copy of Dominicana today!
4:30pm: Cake cutting to celebrate 8 years of Word Up!
Word Up’s 8th Birthday Party
Saturday, June 15, 2019
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Ave @ 165th St
New York NY 10032