Tuesday, May 26, 2020

The Late, Late Hour

You are in for a great surprise with this gem of a book that I have come across.  Also, it is one that I can identify with being a natural insomniac.  "The Late, Late Hour," by Victoria Blanco is sure to please.

The Late, Late Hour
by: Victoria Blanco

Publication Date: December 13, 2019
Book Size: 5.83" x 8.26"
Pages: 136
Binding: Perfect Bound

One of my favorite things to do is fall asleep late with the television on, it was more enjoyable when my parents only had a TV antenna, so I was forced to watch a shopping channel that played elevator music loudly or South Park. On rare occasions, an eclectic pilot would pop up only to never be seen again. Now, I search for these pilots that never saw the light of day online as I sit at my office desk and look out the window.

Customer comment 5 star rating

Rosa Montecillo

Captivating and at times, surreal.

"The late hour" is a collection of contemporary poetry, it is divided into four categories that define and give us a hint of the text's character; it is very easy to read and it is written in a quite enjoyable pace and manner. I applaud the way the texts are organized, presented and complemented with photos, some of which make the experience even richer.

Since the very first text I was hooked, I could clearly see the spirit of each poem, every word and description made a very special atmosphere, at times sweet, at times violent, and sometimes even nostalgic. Each poem is surrounded by its own identity, a special aura that made me feel like I was entering into another world, forgetting everything else happening outside the book.

It was very refreshing to witness such bluntness and raw emotions gathered in few paragraphs and stanzas. I also appreciate how relatable the atmospheres were, due not only to the fact that the context is contemporary to mine but also because she has the sensibility to put into words, experiences and feelings I have had before.

They all feel very personal and sensory; the author is able to navigate through very different topics encompassing: joy, unrequited love, existence, social issues, attachment, time and love, each of them reflecting a lot of passion, the author's sensibility is palpable in every text. She is able to turn everyday things into sweet and sour memories that keep us company and form part of our living experience while presenting her identity as another character in the texts.

So, if you are looking for a book to take you hand in hand through the ups and downs of life while reminiscing about your very own life story, this might be it.

I will definitely read it again.


Tell your readers a little about yourself, where you grew up, where you live now, where you went to school etc. Let them get to know the personal you.

I grew up in Galt, California for most of my life until I finally moved out. I currently reside in Sacramento with my girlfriend and our two dogs. I have a sword tattoo on my left wrist and an overwhelming love for The Simpsons.

What inspired you to author this book?

I was thinking about how I would like to create a new poetry book, and I liked the idea of basic television before streaming services took over. Television was so different back then; there was a set schedule of what will air, you would wait for your favorite show to be on, sometimes it'd be delayed, sometimes a live news report takes its place. The poetry within the theme is contrived of my personal life; it's a bit dark and raw at times.

Where did you get the inspiration for your book's cover?

I definitely wanted a television on it, I wanted it to have a late-night show vibe, but it turned into a grayscale image of a bookcase with a television.

Who has been the most significant influence on you personally and as a writer?

Films. I've slowly arrived at the point where I love watching arthouse films and eccentric shows that helped expand my own emotions and what I would see in my head to paper.

What were your struggles or obstacles you had to overcome to get this book written?

This book took a little longer to write as I had no idea on how I wanted it to come out. All I knew what that I'd write poems and short stories but had no integrated theme or resonance. Besides that, I tend to write with deep melancholy, so for this book, it was a bit more denser and made it difficult to continue at times. I procrastinated so much, even though ideas were burning in my mind. I couldn't find myself to write let alone enjoy it.

Tell your readers about your book.

It is a collection of poetry and short stories that tie in with my personal life. Summer of 2018 was a life-changing year full of emotion and inner-changes in me. Many stories are packed with surrealism and mood. I definitely advise readers to read with an open mind as well as to avoid the book if they're looking for a structured plot or simple mood.

Who is your target audience, and why?

The twenty something-year-olds. We're in a crazy place where everyone is so displaced; people are getting married, starting families, people are graduating and beginning internships at their dream jobs, people are moving out with their loved ones, people are working 8 to 10-hour shifts, I mean shit's crazy. We're all headed in so many directions, yet we can all vibe out when time slows down a bit and catch up with everyone. It's quite beautiful to me actually.

What do you consider your greatest success in life?

I feel like I haven't reached much success to be honest. I'd say my greatest wins would be winning a writing contest in fourth grade, finding amazing friends, finding amazing loves, and always coming back to myself. I'll always be a kid till I die, and so many people have always asked me when will I act my age, and I don't think I ever will. Yes, I will pay my bills and work at a stinking job, but I also will buy a Frozen ball and buy myself a Harry Potter wand.

What one unique thing sets you apart from other writers in your genre?

I think my writing is unique in that I like writing short stories and poetry that doesn't exactly arrive at the point. I reread my writing as a reader, and it definitely leaves me without understanding it sometimes. I think there's sort of a mystery left in it as most characters or narrators are vague leaving readers with some uneasiness because they don't know and trust the protagonist. Besides the distrust, I believe most stories are quite open to interpretation or validation of the reader's emotions.