book cover of Hospital
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(The first book in the Hospital series)
A novel by

From acclaimed Chinese author Han Song comes a twisted, experimental narrative of one man’s mysterious illness and his journey through a dystopian hospital system.

When Yang Wei travels to C City for work, he expects nothing more than a standard business trip. A break from his day-to-day routine, a good paycheck, a nice hotel—nothing too extravagant, of course. No fuss, but all the amenities.

But this is where his problems begin. A complimentary bottle of mineral water from the hotel minibar results in sudden and debilitating stomach pain, followed by unconsciousness. When he wakes three days later, things don’t improve; they get worse. With no explanation, the hotel forcibly sends him to a hospital for examination. There, he receives no diagnosis, no discharge date…just a diligent guide to the labyrinthine medical system he’s now circulating through.

Armed with nothing but his own confusion, Yang Wei travels deeper into the inner workings of the hospital and the secrets it’s hiding from the patients. As he seeks escape and answers, one man’s illness takes him on a quest through a corrupt system and his own troubled mind.

Genre: Science Fiction

Praise for this book

"The kind of science fiction I write is two dimensional; but Han Song writes three-dimensional science fiction. If we look at Chinese science fiction as a pyramid, two-dimensional science fiction would be the foundation, but the kind of three-dimensional science fiction that Han Song writes would be the pinnacle." - Cixin Liu

"Demented, delirious, and one of a kind... Kafkaesque doesn't begin to describe this cunning labyrinth of a novel. Nothing I have read has captured so incisively (and searingly) the unrelenting institutional brutality of our contemporary world." - Junot Díaz

"Han Song stands out among Chinese science fiction writers. His exuberant imagination engages history in total earnest, speaking to the darkness and perversity of the human condition. Hospital is his masterpiece and should be a landmark in the terrain of contemporary science fiction." - Ha Jin

"In this era in which the epidemic rages, Han Song's Hospital has presented us with a delirious Kafka-esque vision of the future where the relationship between disease, patients, and (technological) caregivers has become enshrouded in a new level of complexity and dark enchantment. Thanks to Michael Berry's brilliant translation, this unforgettable literary experience can now reach a new group of readers." - Chen Qiufan

"The darkness contained within Hospital expresses the author's desperation with mankind's attempts at self-treatment and salvation. The novel's completely unbridled narrative path sets out in the direction of science fiction but ultimately arrives at the spiritual abyss lurking in the reality of today's China - and the rest of the world." - Yan Lianke

"A work of unbelievable creativity and imagination." - Yi-Chin Lo

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