Hello, Kitty and other stories

Anne Stevenson-Yang


In ten wonderfully surreal stories, Anne Stevenson-Yang conjures up the atmosphere of a society in freefall.

In stock

ISBN: 9781739424305 Category: Tag:


Kitty and her teenage friends, squatting in an empty apartment, are looking for gas to cook instant noodles. Bai Song and his wife, who live in the unit across the hallway, have a well-equipped kitchen with all the mod cons. Plus they’re old and retired, meaning they’re ripe for a bit of rough fun, Clockwork Orange-style.

China at the turn of the century. Everything is upside down. Respect for your elders? You’ve got be joking. Communism? Yeah right. Cut-throat capitalism is the only way to get ahead. “To get rich is glorious”.

In ten wonderfully surreal stories, Anne Stevenson-Yang conjures up the atmosphere of a society in freefall. China as you’ve never imagined it: a wife who fakes her divorce so she can buy an apartment; neglected teens who tie up an elderly couple so they can use their kitchen; a country girl who poisons a disabled man for a residence permit.

Living in China for nearly twenty-five years, Stevenson-Yang became fascinated in the “muffled violence beneath the placid surface”.

“It seems that the more a culture values traditional social structures, the more it accepts the aggression that inevitably lurks beneath the surface. Self-abnegation and hidden violence are two key themes of these stories. The third is the freeing and yet corrosive effect of money.

“The last few decades have confronted the people of China with tremendous upheaval, new opportunities, naked exploitation, and a new brand of brutality that derives from anonymity.”

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