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Strange Beasts of China

by Yan Ge

Translated by Jeremy Tiang.

Price: £9.99

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Quick take

Winner of an English PEN Award

Runner-Up, 2021 Warwick Prize for Women in Translation

Synopsis

‘All we have are stories.’

In the city of Yong’an, an amateur cryptozoologist is commissioned to uncover the stories of its fabled beasts. These creatures — with their greenish stomachs or gills or strange birthmarks...

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‘All we have are stories.’

In the city of Yong’an, an amateur cryptozoologist is commissioned to uncover the stories of its fabled beasts. These creatures — with their greenish stomachs or gills or strange birthmarks — live alongside humans in near-inconspicuousness, some with ancient forbears, others engineered as artificial breeds.

Guided – and often misguided – by her elusive university professor, and his scrappy student sidekick Zhong Liang, our narrator finds herself on a mission to track down each species. And as she blunders from one implausible situation to the next, she comes one step closer to revealing her own inner beast…

Part detective story, part metaphysical enquiry, Strange Beasts addresses existential questions of identity, being, love and morality with whimsy and grace.

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  • Meet Yan Ge, an extraordinary literary talent who has captivated readers worldwide with her unique storytelling and distinctive voice. Hailing from China, Yan Ge is a celebrated author known for her thought-provoking novels that delve into the complexities of human relationships, cultural nuances, and the human condition. With a keen eye for detail and a remarkable ability to weave compelling narratives, she invites readers on an immersive journey through the landscapes of her characters' lives. As a trailblazer in contemporary literature, Yan Ge continues to push the boundaries of storytelling and leave an indelible mark on the literary world.

  • Founded in 2015, this awesome literary publisher mainly showcases the talents of Asian and African writers in translation. According to them, it's all about an ongoing exploration into alternatives. Plus, they've got some seriously snazzy covers, as...

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