Who Says Latinos Don’t Read? – Libros Schmibros and #BicycleLibraries featured on cover of La Opinion

David Kipen with the BicycleLibrary prototype - image courtesy of LaOpinion.com

David Kipen with the BicycleLibrary prototype – image courtesy of La OpinionCLICK ON THE IMAGE AND VOTE FOR BICYCLE LIBRARIES NOW–EVERY VOTE MATTERS! 

Photo: Ciro Cesar /
La Opinión
By: Araceli Martínez Ortega / Araceli.martinez@laopinion.com
POSTED: Sep 14, 2014 9:00 a.m. ET


In four years, Schmibros Books has released 14,000 copies in Boyle Heights and has plans to develop a fleet bicycle-libraries

Latinos do read in Boyle Heights.

René Ruvalcaba was about to be dad for the third time, but instead of being in the delivery room with his wife, ran to get a book.

“I never liked to be present, instead I come here to look for literature. Better read than being in the hospital, “says Ruvalcaba.

Libros Schmibros opened in Boyle Heights Mariachi Plaza, a short walk from White Memorial Medical Center.

“It’s great. We have to make sure these libraries do not close because the Internet does not leave open a book, “he says.

In 2010, David Kipen, book critic and former director of reading initiatives of National Endowment for the Arts opened a bookstore in the least expected place: Mariachi Plaza in the neighborhood of Boyle Heights.

“I was in the position that people send me books without even asking for them,” he recalls.

Added to that, the Franklin library would close on Mondays. “Then I thought about what I can do to make a difference in a neighborhood that does not have much access to books.”

So while Franklin closed its doors, Libros Schmibros opened its doors in July 2010.   Continue reading

¿Quién Dice que los Latinos No Leen?

David Kipen with the BicycleLibrary prototype - image courtesy of LaOpinion.com

David Kipen with the #BicycleLibrary prototype – image courtesy of La Opinion

Foto: Ciro Cesar/La Opinión
Por: Araceli Martínez Ortega / Araceli.martinez@laopinion.com
PUBLICADO: Sep, 14, 2014 9:00 am EST


En cuatro años, Libros Schmibros ha puesto en circulación 14 mil ejemplares en Boyle Heights y planea desarrollar un proyecto de bicicletas-bibliotecas
Latinos sí leen en Boyle Heights

René Ruvalcaba tenía las horas contadas para ser papá, por tercera ocasión, pero en vez de estar en la sala de partos junto a su esposa, corrió a buscar un libro.

“Nunca me ha gustado estar presente, en lugar de eso me vengo para acá a buscar literatura. Mejor leer que estar en el hospital”, dice Ruvalcaba.

El hispano entró a Libros Schmibros en la plaza Mariachi de Boyle Heights, a unos pasos del White Memorial Medical Center.

“Es excelente. Tenemos que dejar que estas librerías no cierren porque el Internet no deja abrir un libro”, comenta.

En 2010, David Kipen, crítico de libros y ex director de iniciativas de lectura de National Endowment para las Artes abrió una librería en el lugar menos esperado: la plaza Mariachi del barrio hispano de Boyle Heights.

“Estaba en la posición de que la gente me mandaba libros sin ni siquiera pedirlos”, recuerda.

Aunado a eso, la librería Franklin iba a cerrar los lunes. “Entonces pensé qué puedo hacer para hacer una diferencia en un barrio que no tiene mucho acceso a los libros”.

Así que al mismo tiempo que la Franklin cerraba, Libros Schmibros abría sus puertas en julio de 2010.    Continue reading

#BicycleLibraries Media Schmoozefest

Come rub elbows, chew the fat and generally help get spread the word about BicycleLibraries.  Here are the events listings on Google+: Bicycle Libraries Hangout on Air and Most Influential Books with David KipenBe sure to visit the event listing(s) early to submit questions for Q&A.

Here’s a link to the  Facebook Event listing and details.

Two media events, one day, one groovy little lending library with an iron will and a great crew.

Reading by Moonlight with David Kipen

Just in time for the full harvest moon, it’s the second monthly installment of Reading by Moonlight, David Kipen’s roundup of bibliocentric events.  In this month’s installment, David discusses ‘Los Angeles Boulevard’, Nobel Prize and 10 most influential books.

David Kipen - Los Angeles Boulevard - Reading by Moonlight

David Kipen & Libros Schmibros

Read the full article here  |  Listen here:  Reading by Moonlight – Take Two – KPCC – September 8, 2014

Listen to the first installment which originally aired on August 8th 2014, view the Take Two webpage or view David Kipen‘s full archive on the KPCC website.

Puttin’ on our Party Dress!

Libros will take a few days to get pretty for our Aniversario on Sunday, August 10, from 3-6 pm. Until then, we’re closed to the public, though you may catch a glimpse of us hanging fresh papel picado and putting more really great books on our shelves!  After the party, which includes a visit from the mayor’s office to honor us, we’ll return to our normal hours.  Party dress