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Lauriat: A Filipino-Chinese Speculative Fiction Anthology

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-1590212547
ISBN-10: 1590212541
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Editorial Reviews

Review

''SF/F blogger and critic Tan has assembled an eclectic, innovative mix of 14 stories for what is almost certainly the first Filipino Chinese speculative fiction anthology.... Filipino Chinese readers will feel a thrill of recognition; others will be glad to learn more about a culture rarely seen in speculative fiction.'' --Publishers Weekly
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 234 pages
  • Publisher: Lethe Press (August 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590212541
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590212547
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,100,605 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Anthony R. Cardno on July 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
The back cover of LAURIAT proclaims that "Filipinos and Chinese have a rich, vibrant literature when it comes to speculative fiction." I have to admit: other than some familiar folk-tales (and reiterations of such by modern authors), I am woefully ignorant of the history of either nation's speculative fiction. So when the back cover goes on to ask "What about the fiction of the Filipino-Chinese, who draw their roots from both cultures," I find myself wondering if I'll be lost in attempting to understand the cross-cultural, or combi-cultural, nuances of the stories written to answer that question.

I needn't have been worried. Charles A. Tan has put together a wonderful collection of short speculative fiction that manages to feel both familiar and new to this particular American reader. The characters in these stories deal with the same issues of family history, interpersonal relationships and societal expectations that most of us deal with, but the stories also allow a glimpse into the way those concerns play out on what seems a potentially volatile field. And of course because we're dealing with speculative fiction, nothing is quite what it seems.

The focal character of Isabel Yap's "Pure" watches a friend end up in the situation she's in because of the lingering familial view that those of pure Chinese descent should only marry others of Chinese descent. You feel for both women: the one doing anything to become "pure" for her beloved and the one watching it all go wrong. In Erin Chupeco's "Ho-We," family approval of a girl's intended is also a road-block, although this family has bigger concerns than just "Chinese or Mixed." The daughter dates a number of supernatural types, including a dinner date with a zombie.
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