[ Books | Order | TREC | Prose & Poetry | Photos ]

Meet Margot Pepper at the readings and book signings listed below






JULY 19 - 26 @ SF / OAKLAND

Through the Wall:
A Year in Havana

By Margot Pepper

Press Release | Readings | Reviews

Publicity Photos | Cover Images

Margot Pepper's memoir propels us through the blockade to post-cold war Cuba. It's a surreal world where high-ranking officials are required to pick up hitch-hikers. Root canals, cosmetic surgery and graduate school are free, but toilet paper is exorbitant. There's no income tax nor homelessness, yet no house-paint either. As the story unfolds, Margot pursues a passionate love affair with a penniless Mexican poet who shakes up her views about Cuba. With cinematic vividness, Through the Wall reveals the failures and successes of one of the few functioning alternatives to corporate-run government, and draws out lessons that will be embraced by all who believe another world is possible.

ISBN: 0-915117-17-7 $19.95 Order info

Critical Praise for Through the Wall and Margot Pepper

"From her unique vantage point as a journalist working for a year in Special Period Cuba, Margot Pepper has written a smart and politically sophisticated memoir. Interweaving her past as the Mexico City-born daughter of a blacklisted Hollywood producer with the travails of her daily life in Cuba and the larger context of Cuban society in general, her work is imbued with her own political analysis and convictions and captures the feelings as well as the heartbeat of struggling Cuba during such a crucial time. Bravo, Margot Pepper, for writing such an honest and important work. ¡Punto!"

--Piri Thomas, author of Down These Mean Streets

"Margot Pepper's memoir reveals a side of Cuba that most U.S. readers have never seen. Yet it's also about the transformation of individuals, relationships, and societies, and the enlightenment that can sometimes follow those transformations. Through the Wall is far more than a book about Cuba."

--Medea Benjamin, co-founder of Global Exchange

"An unusually talented and perceptive young writer with a natural gift for expressing herself."

--Ring Lardner Jr., Hollywood Ten author of screenplay M*A*S*H.

"Margot Pepper's writing is compelling, able to capture the voice and tenor of those who often do not have a voice in literature, conveying resonant stories for all of us."

--Luis J. Rodriguez, author of Always Running.

"Through the Wall is a truly significant book. More than a significant book!"

--Gerard Colby, president of the National Writer's Union.

About the Author
Born in Mexico City, Margot Pepper's fiction, poetry, translations and articles have appeared in the Utne Reader, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, publications by City Lights, Poetry Flash, El Andar, Canada's The Scoop, France's Le Courrier, Hampton Brown's A Chorus of Cultures, as well as in her first book, At This Very Moment. Her most recent article in the popular City Lights-Freedom Voices anthology, September 11 and the U.S. War, Beyond the Curtain of Smoke, examines the current U.S. climate within the geopolitical framework that emerged after World War II and gave rise to McCarthyism. A graduate of San Francisco State's M.F.A. program in creative writing, she has worked as both a Spanish immersion teacher and poet with California Poets in the Schools for a decade. Her spoken word performances include Yerba Buena Gardens, the Oakland Museum of California, the San Francisco Book Festival, Intersection for the Arts, Barnes & Noble and the National Library of Havana. Pepper has been a featured writer on KPFA's Flashpoints and the Morning Show. She has just completed a curriculum guide for teachers, (Poetry is Using Your Senses) and a collection of short stories of magic realism and science fiction: Everyone, Everyone Can Win!

to top

About Freedom Voices
Freedom Voices (FV) publishes works that speak to or from communities on the margins. Founded in 1989 as a project of the Tenderloin Reflection and Education Center (TREC), the press began as an outlet for the writings from TREC workshops held in San Francisco's urban core. Native Athabaskan poet Mary TallMountain, a Tenderloin resident and activist, was one of the first writers published by the press and FV works closely with the TallMountain Circle to preserve publish and distribute the works of Mary TallMountain who died in 1994.

In addition to Tenderloin-based writers, FV has published a revised edition of Voice of Fire, an anthology of Zapatista writings, co-edited by Ben Clarke and Clifton Ross; September 11 and the U.S. War Beyond the Curtain of Smoke, co-edited by Roger Burbach and Ben Clarke; and Image and Imagination Encounters with the Photography of Dorothea Lange, edited by Ben Clarke.

In 1999 FV acquired New Earth Publications, and expanded its editorial scope through titles such as Ernesto Cardenal's epic poem Quetzalcoatl translated by Clifton Ross, and At the Bottom, A Woman's Life in Central America, by Luisa Gonzales.

The press continues to sponsor readings and workshops in San Francisco's Tenderloin district and recently published Back to the Streets a collection of writings by workshop member George Wynn. FV's latest release, Through the Wall, A Year in Havana, by Margot Pepper, takes readers on an intimate journey to Cuba, and continues the press' tradition of reaching out to marginalized communities wherever located.

to top

MAY 13 - MAY 22

Friday, May 13 7:30pm
Book Release Party
Modern Times Books
888 Valencia St. @ 20th St.
San Francisco
415.282.9246 | www.mtbs.com

Thursday, May 19 8pm
with poet/percussionist Avotcja
The Red Poppy Art House
2698 Folsom St. @ 23rd
San Francisco
415.826.2402 | www.redpoppy.net

Sunday, May 22 4:30pm
with George Wynn: Back to the Streets
Bird & Beckett Books & Records
2788 Diamond St. @ Chenery
San Francisco
415.586.3733 | www.bird-beckett.com

to top


Sunday, June 5 7pm
Reading & Dinner
Event $5 Cuban dinner - $5
MACLA Theater
510 S. First Street
San Jose
408.998.2783 | www.sbconnects.org
Sponsored by South Bay Committee in Solidarity with Cuba
and El Primer Pueblo Libreria/ Bookstore-of San Jose

Tuesday, June 28 7pm
Borders Books & Music
456 University Ave.
Palo Alto
650.326.3670 | www.bordersstores.com

to top


Thursday, July 7 7:30pm
Black Oak Books
1491 Shattuck Ave.
510.486.0698 | www.blackoakbooks.com

to top


Wednesday, July 13 7pm
Dutton's Brentwood Books
11975 San Vicente Blvd.
Los Angeles
310.476.0980 | www.duttonsbrentwood.booksense.com

Thursday, July 14 7:30pm
Tia Chucha's Cafe Cultural
12737 Glenoaks Blvd., #22
818.362.7060 | www.tiachucha.com

to top

JULY 19 - 26 SF / EAST BAY

Tuesday, July 19 7pm
City Lights Books
261 Columbus Ave.
San Francisco
415.362.8193 | www.citylights.com

Thursday, July 21 7:30pm
Barnes & Noble Bookseller - Jack London Square
98 Broadway Street
510.272.0120 | www.barnesandnoble.com

Saturday, July 23 12-3pm
La Raza Galeria Posada
1421 R Street
916.446.5133 | www.galeriaposada.org

Tuesday, July 26 7:30pm
Intersection Literary Series presents
Independent Press Spotlight: Freedom Voices Press & AK Press
$5-$15 sliding scale suggested donation
Intersection for the Arts
446 Valencia St. (btwn 15/16)
San Francisco
(415) 626-2787 | www.theintersection.org

Thurs. Aug 11 7:30pm
Galeria de La Raza and El Tecolote presents
In conjunction with Galeria & Tecolote's 35th Anniversary
Galeria de la Raza
2857 24th St. @ Bryant St.
San Francisco
415.826.8009 | www.galeriadelaraza.org

to top