Publication Date: 04/02/2021 ISBN: 9781787301849 Category:

Bestiary

K-Ming Chang

Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publication Date: 04/02/2021 ISBN: 9781787301849 Category:
Hardback

£14.99

Quantity:

Description

‘This is a powerful novel that will sit inside you for days after reading.’ Sunday Times

Three generations of Taiwanese American women are haunted by the myths of their homeland in this spellbinding, visceral debut about one family’s queer desires, violent impulses, and buried secrets.

One evening, Mother tells Daughter a story about a tiger spirit who lived in a woman’s body. Her name was Hu Gu Po and she paid the price for her body in hunger. It’s one of many stories Daughter absorbs from the women in her family, about gourd daughters, buried gold and rabbit moons. Soon afterwards, Daughter wakes with a tiger tail.

And more mysterious events follow: holes in the backyard spit up letters penned by her estranged grandmother; a visiting aunt arrives with red hands and snakes in her belly; her brother tests the possibility of flight.

All the while, Daughter is falling for Ben, a neighbourhood girl who is more bird than tiger and has mysterious stories of her own. As the two young lovers translate the grandmother’s letters and the myths that surround them, Daughter must reckon with how deep these stories are buried within her, and what power is rising, violently, through her. She will have to bring her family’s secrets to light in order to change their destiny.

‘To read K-Ming Chang is to see the world in fresh, surreal technicolor… Both wild and lyrical, visionary and touching. Read her!’ Sharlene Teo, author of Ponti

** LAMBDA LITERARY LESBIAN FICTION FINALIST**

Publisher Review

Gorgeous and gorgeously grotesque . . . Every line of this sensuous, magical-realist marvel-about multiple generations of Taiwanese-American women in Arkansas whose lives are imbued with cultural and familial myth-is utterly alive. * O: The Oprah Magazine * K-Ming Chang's prose ravishes, ravages, rampages. This is an absolute lightning strike of a debut. The world grew brighter as I read it. -- Kelly Link, author of GET IN TROUBLE The poet K-Ming Chang's debut novel, Bestiary, offers up a different kind of narrative, full of magic realism that reaches down your throat, grabs hold of your guts and forces a slow reckoning with what it means to be a foreigner, a native, a mother, a daughter - and all the things in between. * New York Times * What gives me fuel are other books - anything stylish and/or dirty. This year I loved reading K. Ming Chang's Bestiary. * Raven Leilani, author of Luster * K-Ming Chang is ferociously talented, one of my favorite new writers. She understands the language of desire and secrecy. Here is a book so wise; so gripping; so mythical and dangerous; so infused with surreal beauty, it burns to be read, and read again. -- Justin Torres, author of We the Animals This book astounded me, unsettled me, and left me envious of K-Ming Chang's talent. Bestiary is a gleaming, meticulously crafted gem. I could spend all day marvelling at Chang's prose; these are sentences you want to climb inside, relish, and read again and again just for the pleasure of the language. -- Jessica J. Lee, author of Turning and Two Trees Make a Forest Bestiary is crafted at the scale of epic poetry: origin stories that feel at once gravely older than their years, yet viscerally contemporary. Chang knows well that the life of a family-marriage, immigration, queer coming-of-age-can so often feel like a wild and tender myth, being spun and unspun by its members, again and again. These are fables I wish I'd had growing up. -- Elaine Castillo, author of America Is Not the Heart Told by many voices, Bestiary is a queer, transnational fairy tale whose irresistible heroine is a Taiwanese American baby dyke. Written in a prose style as inventive and astonishing as the story it tells, to read it is to enter a world where the female body possesses enormous power, where the borders between generations are porous and shifting. A worthy heir to Maxine Hong Kingston, Lois-Ann Yamanaka, and Jamaica Kincaid, K-Ming Chang is a woman warrior for the 21st century-part oracle, part witness, all heart. -- Jennifer Tseng, author of Mayumi and the Sea of Happiness Fierce and funny, full of magic and grit, Bestiary is the most searching exploration of love and belonging I've read in a long time. Family, immigrant, queer, magic realist-none of these tags can quite capture the energy of this startling novel, which is all of those things, yet somehow more. K-Ming Chang has created something truly remarkable. -- Tash Aw, author of We, the Survivors [A] vivid, fabulist debut . . . the prose is full of imagery. Chang's wild story of a family's tenuous grasp on belonging in the U.S. stands out with a deep commitment to exploring discomfort with the body and its transformations. * Publishers Weekly * Epic and intimate at once, Bestiary brings myth to visceral life, showing what becomes of women and girls who carry tigers, birds, and fish within. K-Ming Chang's talent exposes what is hidden inside us. She makes magic on the page. -- Julia Philips, author of the National Book Award finalist Disappearing Earth To read K-Ming Chang is to see the world in fresh, surreal technicolor. Hers is a dizzyingly imaginative, sharp-witted voice queering migration, adolescence, and questions of family and belonging in totally new and unexpected ways. Both wild and lyrical, visionary and touching. Read her! -- Sharlene Teo, author of Ponti K-Ming Chang's prose ravishes, ravages, rampages. This is an absolute lightning strike of a debut. The world grew brighter as I read it. -- Kelly Link, author of GET IN TROUBLE Gorgeous and gorgeously grotesque . . . Every line of this sensuous, magical-realist marvel-about multiple generations of Taiwanese-American women in Arkansas whose lives are imbued with cultural and familial myth-is utterly alive. * O: The Oprah Magazine * Chang makes a spell rise from every wound, and I'm caught all the way up in this magic... Chang is one of the best emerging writers out there The poet K-Ming Chang's debut novel, Bestiary, offers up a different kind of narrative, full of magic realism that reaches down your throat, grabs hold of your guts and forces a slow reckoning with what it means to be a foreigner, a native, a mother, a daughter - and all the things in between. * New York Times * What gives me fuel are other books - anything stylish and/or dirty. This year I loved reading K. Ming Chang's Bestiary. -- Raven Leilani, author of Luster

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