In its premiere the collection of short stories. Home remedies, Xuan Juliana Wang writes as if she were stabilizing against the daily whiplash. She has a careful ear and a firm look at the lives that move silently and seismically under the rapid forces of globalization. His state of mind is cautious and his style is mischievous, but the animating force of his writing is always a diligent curiosity.
"With the writing," says Wang behind a pair of large, white sunglasses in a park in Los Angeles, "I'm taking this really boring drug, but I can not stop doing it."
The collection is a document of fast movement and slow observation. It resembles the lives of hard and sensitive children in Chinatown, or the languid trust fund scene that spreads out on a rooftop in Beijing, where the rich learn idioms in English, such as "how to throw the word." love around. "The collection is full of hopeful and irresistible characters whose lives are on the eve of change.
Wang wrote Home remedies throughout his twenties, a time in which he lived in Beijing for a couple of years, Palow Alto for a couple more, then in a 270-square-foot apartment in New York, and then returned to Los Angeles every time She teaches fiction at UCLA. Home remedies It is particularly sensitive to the pull of the place. Explore how environments inform the cadences of our relationships, our ambitions, the way we love (crowded, frenetic, expansive, chaotic) and the way we think (the same thing).
Wang is located in the school of "writing clearly about weird things." Their stories have the immediate oxygen burst of Aimee Bender, the simply strange logics of Deborah Eisenberg and the intense and strange curiosity of Mary Gaitskill. His fiction is chameleonic: fast and casually surreal, enough to stay true to the strangeness of life. His appearances are vicious and quick, as villains always get the best houses, do not they? "I've been to some of those apartments in New York," laughs Wang, "I like it, you could do bad things here! But sometimes you just drink whiskey and you have a big cat!"
Instead of looking for any punctual revelation about a character, she increases the infinite fascination about all the ways in which people transform, change and exist. Wang's perspective is satisfying and life-giving, and also peculiarly accurate, probably better crystallized in his ability to name. In the collection, there are brothers called Walnut, Pinetree and Lucy. There is a cat called Little Cow.
"I name things constantly," she says. He got used to living in Beijing, where he translated English and Chinese, and he was a person who repaired the Olympic Games. "All the waiters wanted names in English. They are from outside of Beijing, they would sleep in the restaurant booths after work. They were so sweet. One boy said "My name is Joe", but the other one said "I do not have a name because he used Joe". He said "You can be Nathan!" Your family their names in English. Her stepsister is Veronica, when Wang was reading Mary Gaitskill at that time.
In Home remedies The men narrate half the stories, and deepening their perspective took a bit of warm-up, says Wang. He read the old LiveJournal entries and went to parties with the intention of letting a man talk to him about "dating or something like that" .
"I use the people around me all the time," she says. "I never write about the people I'm close to, never my husband or my close friends, it's the people who are not available to me who interest me, I'm more fascinated when they do not give me everything."
The collection is luxurious, meandering and perceptive, and vibrates with new ideas about storytelling. The characters that live in Home remedies They are written with unbridled tenderness. They are so present a couple of times, it feels like crawling inside someone's body and wanting to keep them away from various rips or sacrifices. The watery grace of "Vaulting the Sea" encapsulates this probably the best of the stories in Home remedies; Aqueous grace evokes the little-read novel by Carol Anshaw. Aquamarine.
This close relationship with specific human weaknesses does not stop Wang from capturing the larger forces that direct lives. In a way, the book is a catalog of portraits about life under the strangeness of globalization. Through portraits of Chinese and Chinese-American people, Home remedies it pushes against the perception that culture is limited, and observes what transforms when cultures change place and time.
Wang was born in 1985 in Heilongjiang, China. She remembers a television station that went blank at 10 p.m. when she saw the static for a moment. There was a bathhouse where people showered once a month and cleaned the rest of the time. "Everyone in my generation can remember what it was like to have nothing," she says. Now, the main cities of China are possibly more advanced, with a wealth much greater than in the United States, where he moved when he was seven years old. "He just jumped in. I think that does something to a person, I also think he did something to me."
Wealth and its repercussions beset Home remedies– Close the meetings with money, a sudden gain at a cost, without money, too much. "My grandmother always encouraged us: Why save money! Live your life! That's so different than most Asian families and that generation, "says Wang. Her family had had a truck business, but it was removed during the revolution." So my grandmother never thought about saving money for her children. he thought, they will do their thing, maybe all this will go away. "
Home remedies it arrives at a world that turns at a dizzying speed, like a constant and inquisitive reflector, which always seeks the sparkle of a true and unguarded face in a world that could lose all its gravity at any second.
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