book cover of Useful Phrases for Immigrants

Useful Phrases for Immigrants

(2018)
A collection of stories by

 
 
In the title story of this timely and innovative collection, a young woman wearing a Prada coat attempts to redeem a coupon for plastic storage bins while her in-laws are at home watching the Chinese news and taking her private phone calls. It is the lively and wise juxtaposition of cultures, generations, and emotions that characterize May-lee Chai's amazing stories. Within them, readers will find a complex blend of cultures spanning China, the Chinese diaspora in America, and finally, the world at large.

With luminous prose and sharp-eyed observations, Chai reveals her characters' hopes and fears, and our own: a grieving historian seeking solace from an old lover in Beijing, a young girl discovering her immigrant mother's infidelity, workers constructing a shopping mall in central China who make a shocking discovery. Families struggle with long-held grudges, reinvent traditions, and make mysterious visits to shadowy strangers from their past - all rendered with economy and beauty.

With hearts that break and sometimes mend, with families who fight and sometimes forgive, the timely stories in Useful Phrases for Immigrants illuminate complicated lives with empathy and passion. Chai's stories are essential reading for an increasingly globalized world.

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"A splendid gem of a story collection...Chai's work is a grand event." - Edward P Jones


Used availability for May-Lee Chai's Useful Phrases for Immigrants

Paperback Editions

October 2018 : USA Paperback
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Title: Useful Phrases for Immigrants: Stories (Bakwin Award)
Author(s): May-lee Chai
ISBN: 0-932112-76-5 / 978-0-932112-76-7 (USA edition)
Publisher: Blair
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Kindle Editions

October 2018 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Useful Phrases for Immigrants: Stories (Bakwin Award)
Author(s): May-lee Chai
Publisher: Blair
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU