A Girl's Guide to the Islands
Published by Gemmedia
The American writer Suzanne Kamata had lived in Japan for more than half of her life, yet she had never explored the small nearby islands of the Inland Sea. The islands, first made famous by Donald Richie’s The Inland Sea 50 years ago, are noted for displaying artwork created by prominent, and sometimes curious, international artists and sculptors: Naoshima’s wealth of museums, including one devoted to 007, Yayoi Kusama’s polka dot pumpkins, Kazuo Katase’s blue teacup, and a monster rising out of a well on the hour in Sakate, called “Anger at the Bottom of the Sea”—to name a few. Spurred by her teen-aged daughter Lilia’s burgeoning interest in art and adventure, Kamata sets out to show her the islands’ treasures. Mother and daughter must confront several barriers on their adventure. Lilia is deaf and uses a wheelchair. It is not always easy to get onto — or off of — the islands, not to mention the challenges of language, culture, and a generation gap. A Girls’ Guide to the Islands takes the reader on a rare visit by a unique mother and daughter team.
Dear Hong Kong
Published by Penguin
From a writer whose body of work witnesses her love affair with Hong Kong comes Dear Hong Kong, a highly personal narrative that unravels Xu Xi’s recently finalised decision to leave the city for good. Xu Xi explores her tumultuous relationship with Hong Kong, her personal frustrations with how the city has developed in the recent past, and how these changes have informed her decision not to spend her most recent years there — a farewell address to the place that has shaped so much of her own identity.
The Concubine and the Slave-Catcher
Published by HopeRoad
Synopsis by Dr. Claire Chambers, author and editor of The Journal of Commonwealth Literature, University of York
’An old man in Manchester dreams of his previous life in Pakistan, but on returning there realises he is no longer sure where home is. Two married couples from different cultures come into conflict over tourism, disability and betrayal in Malaysia. The horrors of the Holocaust and Birkenau concentration camp are writ large in one pregnant woman’s experiences. A young woman finds her engagement broken off because her fiancé’s family disapprove of her walking attire. Two women suffer the consequences when they breach superstitions around miscarriage in a Pakistani village. The sundering of India and Pakistan in the 1947 partition is revealed when a Muslim boy is adopted by a Hindu family during the chaos of mass migration. A British man witnesses the hard lot of Afghan workers in the Gulf. A family tries to cover up the shame of an elder daughter running away with her boyfriend. A well-meaning abolitionist learns the sordid and violent truth about slavery from her African American servants.
Foreword by Terrance Hayes
Edited by Peter Kahn, Ravi Shankar, and Patricia Smith
Published by University of Arkansas Press