Lionel Rolfe, a frequent contributor to the Echo Park Patch, will sign and read from his newest book, "The Misadventures of Ari Mendelsohn: A Mostly True Memoir of California Journalism" at Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave. in Los Feliz, on March 30, at 5 p.m.
Rolfe has been a working journalist in the Los Angeles area since he began writing a column for the Los Angles Free Press in 1970, after a stint at the San Francisco Chronicle.
He went on to write for the Los Angeles Times' West Magazine, Calendar and what was then called the Style section. He wrote a regular series in the Los Angeles Time's Style section called "City People," profiles of people who were doing interesting things and had lived interesting lives, but would normally not be written about in a newspaper. He later wrote for the Herald-Examiner.
He went on to edit the old Jewish newspaper, the B'nai Brith Messenger, for the last 10 years of its existence. The Messenger had been the city's third oldest newspaper, starting publication in 1892. He also was an editor at the magazine Psychology Today, and wrote extensively for the Los Angeles Reader.
He has written eight books, the first about his family of famed classical musicians, "The Menuhins: A Family Odyssey." His work "Literary L.A.," originally published by Chronicle Books, was a pioneering work about Los Angeles and the great writers who lived here and wrote here. Some of his other volumes include "Fat Man on the Left" and "The Uncommon Friendship of Yaltah Menuhin and Willa Cather."
A documentary about "Literary L.A." is under production now. Paul Haggis, the famed director and screenplay writer, optioned "Bread and Hyacinths: The Rise and Fall of Utopian Los Angeles."
The Misadventures of Ari Mendelsohn tells the story of some of the more fascinating characters in Los Angeles and California journalism. The book reveals some of the deepest truths about Los Angeles, truths that are both revealing, painful and exhilarating..