Gods of Want

Stories
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Visceral stories that center the bodies, memories, myths, and relationships of Asian American women, from the National Book Award "5 Under 35" honoree and author of Bestiary

In "Auntland," a steady stream of aunts adjust to American life by sneaking surreptitious kisses from women at temple, buying tubs of vanilla ice cream to prepare for citizenship tests, and hatching plans to name their daughter "Dog." In "The Chorus of Dead Cousins," ghost-cousins cross space, seas, and skies to haunt their live-cousin, wife to a storm-chaser. In “Xífù,” a mother-in-law tortures a wife in increasingly unsuccessful attempts to rid the house of her. In "Mariela," two girls explore one another's bodies for the first time in the belly of a plastic shark while in "Virginia Slims," a woman from a cigarette ad comes to life. And in "Resident Aliens," a former slaughterhouse serves as a residence to a series of widows, each harboring her own calamitous secrets.
 
With each tale, K-Ming Chang gives us her own take on a surrealism that mixes myth and migration, corporeality and ghostliness, queerness and the quotidian. Stunningly told in her feminist fabulist style, these are uncanny stories peeling back greater questions of power and memory.

Praise

“These stories glitter and pulse, announcing Chang, with her second book, as a front-runner of innovation anew. Full of mythic desire, joy and pain disguised as the other, and navigating the precarious balance of how to belong to a land while still belonging to oneself, Gods of Want is bursting with language and images so striking, so sure of their own strength, I found myself stunned. The worlds and characters depicted in these pages are original, strange, sometimes-horrific, and all the more gorgeous because of it.”—Dantiel W. Moniz, author of Milk Blood Heat
 
“The beauty, humor, and brilliance throughout Gods of Want shines brightly from story to story—Chang’s collection is constantly illuminating and thoroughly astounding. K-Ming Chang’s mastery of language, and the boundlessness of her empathy, make for a strange, hilarious, and unforgettable read. Gods of Want is a gift and a master class, a stunning and moving work by one of our most brilliant authors.”—Bryan Washington, author of Lot and Memorial

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Gods of Want

Visceral stories that center the bodies, memories, myths, and relationships of Asian American women, from the National Book Award "5 Under 35" honoree and author of Bestiary In "Auntland," a… More