Since being published in hard cover by Fordham University Press/Empire State Editions in May 2022, Our Laundry, Our Town: My Chinese American Life from Flushing to the Downtown Stage and Beyond, was covered by The New York Times in a “Sunday Routine” profile, NPR/WNYC’s All of It with Alison Stewart and The Brian Lehrer ShowNY1’s Live at 10 with Cheryl Wills and CUNY-TV, among many others. In-person and virtual Author Events, Book Talks and Readings and Podcast profiles have also been enthusiastically received in book stores, branches of the New York Public Library, art galleries such as City Lore, where the book had its in-person launch on May 20, 2022 and at college and university venues such as CUNY/AAARI (Asian American/Asian Research Institute) where the book had its virtual launch––also on May 20. This page contains a complete listing of this coverage––with links to the media wherever possible––followed by a list of Author Events for the book––current, future and past. But let us start at the beginning, by giving thanks to all of the generous “blurbers.” (Looking ahead, the memoir will be published in paperback in October 2023.)

Pre-Publication Blurbs

“Powerful, funny at times, and consistently inspiring, Our Laundry, Our Town turns one artist’s journey into the story of AAPI communities and emergence of a movement over the past half-century. Alvin Eng’s engaging memoir looks back on the past to envision a better future.”—DAVID HENRY HWANG, screenwriter and Tony Award–winning playwright of M. Butterfly

 Our Laundry, Our Town makes an important and badly needed East Coast contribution to the continually evolving Asian American literary canon. Asian American and Ethnic Studies students and others will be able to find their personal experiences of regret, resignation, and, hopefully, triumph defined with pathos and humor, and written from—what has been rare in this genre—an adult’s point of view. And the book is absolutely fun to read!”—JEFFERY PAUL CHAN, author of Eat Everything Before You Die; co-editor of Aiiieeeee! anthologies,and co-founder of the first Asian American Studies program in the United States at San Francisco State University

“Alvin Eng’s fascinating, funny, aching, searching, loving memoir derives its power from that key element of New York City’s dynamism and magic:  that behind every apartment door and scrappy storefront, in every far-flung outer-borough neighborhood, lie vast worlds, sweeping histories, and epic tales of questing souls melding the old ways into something meaningful and new.”—LISA KRON, playwright, actor and Tony Award-winning bookwriter and lyricist of Fun Home

“Second-generation Asian American youth always feel like they’re the first to not belong. How liberating, then, to encounter Our Laundry, Our Town. The book tells a moving tale of the distances that separate you from your immigrant parents, as well as a Toisanese labor history set in a laundry, but there’s a surprising twist. The protagonist is a young punk who hates math, loves The Who, and finds himself navigating the late-twentieth-century multicultural bohemia of rock and hip hop, Asian American film and theater, and avant-garde queer performance. In this humorous, amiable, and deeply heartfelt memoir, Eng seems to have achieved the Asian American dream: honoring his mother and father before him while also creating a community where he can be his whole self and finally belong.”

KEN CHEN, Associate Director of Creative Writing at Barnard College; former Executive Director, Asian American Writers’ Workshop

Our Laundry, Our Town reveals how and why Eng has become a writer, by way of his youthful identity quest through music, television, Cantonese opera, Chinese and American cinema, theatre, and performance. The awareness, self-knowledge, and self-acceptance he acquires is won sometimes painfully, sometimes comically, from a synthesis of American and Chinese culture particular to the time and place he inhabits. “—LINDA S. CHAPMAN, Lilly Award and GLAAD Media Award winner, former Associate Artistic Director, New York Theatre Workshop

“An evocative perspective on the Chinese American experience, a personal time-capsulated journey from immigrant Chinatowns back to China’s motherland. Eng creates a memoir-style blend of satire, sociology, and history to explore familial relationships, issues of identity, race, societal expectations—a multi-generational spin on assimilation and ‘Americanization’ that struggles through ‘longing to belong.’ Eng is a gem.”—HENRY CHANG, author of the Detective Jack Yu crime novel series

“Alvin Eng’s masterful, sweeping memoir about growing up with his five siblings in a dysfunctional family in the back of  the Foo J. Chin Chinese Hand Laundry in Flushing, Queens is laced with his marvelous humor, family anecdotes and metaphors that bring a century of the Chinese American Experience to life. I was deeply touched, especially by the spirits parallels between the folks in Thornton Wilder’sOur Town and the laundry­­ and the beautiful idea that his parents didn’t really see each other either––like the characters in the play. Just a beautiful book.” –STEVE ZEITLIN, folklorist, author of Poetry of Everyday Life and Founding Director of City Lore

Press Interviews and Reviews

BOOK MARKETING BUZZ, Interview, March 29, 2022

QUEENS LEDGER, Profile, May 10, 2022 

THE WELL NEWS, Profile, May 17, 2022

QUEENS CHRONICLE, Profile, May 19, 2022

HASTY BOOK LIST , Interview, May 23, 2022

DEBORAH KALB BOOK Q&A, Interview, May 26, 2022

TRIBECA CITIZEN, Profile, June 3, 2022

POP MATTERS, Review, June 3, 2022

NEW YORK TIMES “Sunday Routine” Profile,  June 12, 2022

LONG ISLAND WEEKLY, Profile, June 5, 2022


INTERNATIONAL EXAMINER, Profile, December 1, 2022


Television / Live Streaming

LIVE AT TEN with CHERYL WILLS, NY1-TV,  aired on May 9, 2022

OPEN BXRX FRIDAY with RHINA VALENTIN Bronx TV Net – 8-minute segment aired on May 12, 2022

AUTHOR TALK with KEW & WILLOW BOOKS (with Amy Chin), posted on May 26, 2022

ASIAN AMERICAN LIFE, CUNY-TV, aired September 2022

BOOK IT WITH CA, CUNY-TV, aired November 2022

Radio / Podcasts

LEONARD LOPATE AT LARGE  WBAI/Pacifica Radio NYC, aired on May 11, 2022

NEW BOOKS NETWORK podcast with Deirdre Tyler,  posted May 16, 2022


VIRTUAL MEMORIES PODCAST with Gil Roth, posted on May 24, 2022 (my birthday)

ALL OF IT with ALISON STEWART ON NPR/WNYC, aired on May 31, 2022


THE BRIAN LEHRER SHOW, NPR/WNYC, aired on August 4, 2022


Two-Part Book Launch – MAY 20, 2022

Part I – Virtual City University of New York / Asian American/Asian Research Institute CUNY/AAARI

Friday Lecture Series with Antony Wong

Part II: In Person City Lore, East Village, NYC

With emcee, co-director Molly Garfinkel and Fordham Press’s Richard Morrison

MAY 25, 2022

AARP Houston Kew & Willow Books, Kew Gardens, Queens, NYC

Asian American Family Secrets Hidden in Plain Sight with Amy Chin

MAY 26, 2022

Kew & Willow Books, Kew Gardens, Queens, NYC

Live Streamed Virtual Author Talk and Conversation with Amy Chin

JUNE 2, 2022

Queens Public Library, Cambria Heights branch, Queens, NYC

Literary Thursdays Virtual Reading and Discussion series.

JUNE 8, 2022

Yu & Me Books, Chinatown, NYC

Author Meet-n-Greet  

JUNE 12, 2022

21 Pell Street Community Center, Chinatown, NYC

Reading, concert and discussion with Skyler Chin  

Emcees, Dominic Wong, Rob Gee

JUNE 25, 2022

New York Public Library, Hudson Park branch, West Village, NYC

Reading and discussion.

SEPTEMBER 15, 2022

KGB Bar, East Village, NYC

Drunken! Careening! Writers series with Charles Salzberg

Emcee and founder, Kathleen Warnock

SEPTEMBER 23, 2022

Word Books, Jersey City, N.J.  

Open Mic Spotlight reading with emcee Emdash

SEPTEMBER 28, 2022

Dixon Place, LES, NYC

Guerilla Lit Series with Philip Brunetti and Topaz Winters

Emcee:Lee Matthew Goldberg

OCTOBER 12, 2022

New York Public Library, Chatham Square branch, Chinatown, NYC

Asian American Authors in Conversation with branch manager Sean Ferguson (subbing for Arthur Ling, who had Covid!)

OCTOBER 25, 2022

Queens Public Library, Flushing Main Street branch,

Hometown Author Talk

NOVEMBER 12, 2022

Inquiring Minds Bookstore & Café, Saugerties, NY

Reading and conversation with Sarah Litvin, Executive Director, Reher Center for Immigrant Culture & History. Hosted by bookstore manager Hannah Peterson.

NOVEMBER 14, 2022

Rough Draft Books Kingston, NY

Local Author Meet-n-Greet with Mark Morganstern

NOVEMBER 19, 2022

Judson Memorial Church, NYC

People’s Voice Café series, Special Guest of Warren Lehrer & Judith Sloan

JANUARY 6, 2023,  

Hudson Guild, NYC

Hudson Guild AuthorsReading and Discussion with Michelle Tokarczyk and Michelle Herman Emcee: Jonathan Kuhn

JANUARY 25, 2023,

New York Public Library, New Amsterdam branch, Tribeca, NYC

Lower Manhattan Book Club Lunar New Year Book Talk!

Book was Lunar New Year selection of NYPL’s Lower Manhattan Book Club!

Reading, followed by talk with librarian Karen Loder

AUTHOR EVENTS (upcoming)

…stay tuned for Spring 23 events!

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