Category Archives: Face Out

January 27- Conversations on Self-Care + Book Celebration

Natalie Love Cruz is a nutritional healer, herbal alchemist, and self-care advocate. She has facilitated workshops and retreats helping women of color recognize the importance of self-care. ​She is the creator of the planner “Self Care Cues: Just Do You!” which focuses on integrating self-care into every day living.
Guests are invited to a moderated book talk and celebration of the ultimate self-care planner for 2019.


Conversations on Self-Care + Book Celebration                               Sunday, January 27, 2018
3:00-5:00 pm 
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Ave. (@ 165th St.)
New York NY 10032


January 16- Tony Wood and Keith Gessen in Conversation

Vladimir Putin personifies his country in the eyes of the outside world, and dominates Western media coverage of it to an extraordinary extent. In Russia without Putin, Tony Wood argues that the overwhelming focus on the president and his personality means that we understand Russia less than we ever did before. Exploring the profound social, political, and economic changes the country has undergone since 1991, Wood challenges several of the standard assumptions of Western coverage. In conversation with Keith Gessen.

TONY WOOD is a member of the editorial board of New Left Review and is previously the author of Chechnya: The Case for Independence (2007). His writing has appeared in the London Review of Books, the Guardian and The Nation, among other places.

KEITH GESSEN is a professor of journalism at the Harriman Institute, Columbia, a founding editor of n+1, and a contributor to the New Yorker and the London Review of Books. His latest novel, A Terrible Country, came out from Viking in July.

“There are few journalistic books about Russia that take its complexity seriously enough not to fall back on simplistic, essentialist, or Orientalist frameworks. Russia Without Putin is unquestionably one of them. The interpretation it develops should already have been the baseline for a larger discussion, instead of a desperate response to a debate about the Putin menace that has come entirely unmoored from reality. [Russia Without Putin] is not only praiseworthy but vital.” – Greg Afinogenov, *Bookforum*


Tony Wood and Keith Gessen in Conversation                                                  Wednesday, January 16, 2018
6:30-8:30 pm 
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Ave. (@ 165th St.)
New York NY 10032

January 12- Book Reading and Event with author Hilda Eunice Burgos

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Come meet author Hilda Eunice Burgos and learn about her debut middle grade  book, ANA MARÍA REYES DOES NOT LIVE IN A CASTLE.

Her last name may mean “kings,” but Ana María Reyes REALLY does not live in a castle. Rather, she’s stuck in a tiny apartment with two parents (way too loveydovey), three sisters (way too dramatic), everyone’s friends (way too often), and a piano (which she never gets to practice). And when her parents announce a new baby is coming, that means they’ll have even less time for Ana María.

Then she hears about the Eleanor School, New York City’s best private academy. If Ana María can win a scholarship, she’ll be able to get out of her Washington Heights neighborhood school and achieve the education she’s longed for. To stand out, she’ll need to nail her piano piece at the upcoming city showcase, which means she has to practice through her sisters’ hijinks, the neighbors’ visits, a family trip to the Dominican Republic . . . right up until the baby’s birth! But some new friends and honest conversations help her figure out what truly matters, and know that she can succeed no matter what.

Ana María Reyes may not be royal, but she’s certain to come out on top.

HILDA EUNICE BURGOS has been writing for many years, but Ana Maria Reyes Does Not Live in a Castle will be her first published novel. Her parents emigrated from the Dominican Republic before she was born, and she grew up in Washington Heights as one of four sisters. She now lives with her family near Philadelphia, where she works as an environmental lawyer. Please visit her website at

Ven a conocer a la autora Hilda Eunice Burgos y ANA MARÍA REYES DOES NOT LIVE IN A CASTLE, su primera novela para grados intermedios. Su apellido puede significar “reyes”, pero Ana María Reyes REALMENTE no vive en un castillo. Más bien, está atrapada en un pequeño apartamento con ambos padres (demasiado cariñosos), tres hermanas (demasiado dramáticas), las amistades de todos (demasiado a menudo) y un piano (que nunca llega a practicar). Y cuando sus padres anuncian que se acerca un nuevo bebé, eso significa que tendrán aun menos tiempo para Ana María. Luego se entera de la escuela Eleanor, la mejor academia privada de la ciudad de Nueva York. Si Ana María puede ganar una beca, podrá irse de la escuela de su vecindario de Washington Heights y obtener la educación que ha anhelado. Para sobresalir, tendrá que sorprender con su pieza de piano en el próximo evento de la ciudad, lo que significa que tiene que practicar a pesar las bromas de sus hermanas, las visitas de los vecinos y un viaje familiar a la República Dominicana. . . ¡Hasta el nacimiento del bebé! Pero algunos nuevos amigos y conversaciones honestas la ayudan a descubrir qué es lo que realmente importa, y que puede tener éxito sin importar lo que pase. Es posible que Ana María Reyes no sea de la realeza, pero seguramente saldrá ganando. HILDA EUNICE BURGOS lleva muchos años escribiendo, pero Ana Maria Reyes Does Not Live in a Castle será su primera novela publicada. Sus padres emigraron de la República Dominicana antes de que ella naciera, y creció en Washington Heights como una de cuatro hermanas. Ahora vive con su familia cerca de Philadelphia, donde trabaja como abogada ambiental. Visita su sitio web en

 Book Reading and Event with author Hilda Eunice Burgos                    Saturday, January 12, 2018
1:00-3:00 pm 
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Ave. (@ 165th St.)
New York NY 10032

December 17- Adoptee Stories: Too Much Soul and Mixed Koreans

Celebrate two books with adoptee stories released in 2018!

Cindy Wilson and Milton Washington will read from their publications that have been released earlier this year.

WHO: Open to the Public
WHEN: Monday, December 17, 7:00 pm – 8:30pm
WHERE: Word Up Community Bookshop, 2113 Amsterdam Ave, New York NY (168 st exit is only 3 stops on the A subway from 42nd St)

Refreshments will be provided.

Cindy Wilson was born in Seoul, Korea, but was adopted by an African American couple as a baby. She was raised in Jackson, MS where she graduated with her Bachelor’s in Psychology and Master’s in Counseling from Jackson State University and received her MBA from Belhaven College. She currently resides in Atlanta, GA. Cindy has always been passionate about serving others since she was young and currently dedicates her time volunteering for a children’s hospital and several non-profits. When she is not busy writing and with her volunteer commitments she loves to read, travel, exercise and is a strong advocate for community and social issues.

Milton Washington will discuss his story that is included in the Mixed Koreans anthology. Born in South Korea, Milton Washington was adopted and brought to the states in 1979 where he learned English and the American culture. Today, he lives in Harlem, New York operating his Growth Strategy and Visual Development agency called, Slickyboy Studios. He is months away from completing his memoir entitled, Slickyboy.


Adoptee Stories: Too Much Soul and Mixed Koreans                            Monday, December 17, 2018
6:30-8:30 pm 
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Ave. (@ 165th St.)
New York NY 10032

August 15- No Ashes in the Fire: Darnell L. Moore


UPDATE: We finally rescheduled with Darnell L. Moore! Come Word Up: Community Bookshop – Libreria Comunitaria Wednesday, August 15 to hear him in conversation with Mychal Denzel Smith.

When Darnell L. Moore was fourteen, three boys from his neighborhood tried to set him on fire. They cornered him while he was walking home from school, harassed him because they thought he was gay, and poured a jug of gasoline on him. He escaped, but just barely. It wasn’t the last time he would face death.

What happens to the black boys who come of age in neglected, heavily policed, and economically desperate cities that the War on Drugs and mass incarceration have created? How do they learn to live, love, and grow up? Where should they turn when history rejects their very existence? Darnell explores these questions in his memoir NO ASHES IN THE FIRE: COMING OF AGE BLACK AND FREE IN AMERICA.

In bold and inspiring prose, Darnell traces his life from his childhood in Camden, a city scarred by uprisings and repression; to his search for intimacy in the gay neighborhoods of Philadelphia; and, finally, to the movements in Newark, Brooklyn, and Ferguson where he found his voice and his calling as a leading organizer with Black Lives Matter, a movement that recognized him and insisted that his life counted. Moore reminds us that liberation is possible if we commit ourselves to fighting for it, and if we dream and create futures where those who survive on society’s edges can thrive.

At Word Up, Darnell will be in conversation with Mychal Denzel Smith, New York Times–bestselling author of Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching: A Young Black Man’s Education. Books will be available for sale at the bookshop, and are also available online on our website:                                             The event will be introduced by Memphis Washington, founder of the Q&T Meetup at Word Up.

Reading: NO ASHES IN THE FIRE: Darnell L. Moore                                              Wednesday, August 15, 2018                                                                                              6:30–8:30pm                                                                                                                      Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria                                               2113 Amsterdam Avenue @ 165th St.                                                                          New York NY 10032