The Way Spring Arrives and Other Stories
Edited by Yu Chen and Regina Kanyu Wang. Tor, $26.99 (400p) ISBN 978-1-250-7689
With this impressive anthology, Yu and Wang bring together the first English translations of 17 Chinese-language stories by female and nonbinary writers. One can find refuge—and pay the tab with a story—at the eponymous eatery featured in “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe: Tai-Chi Mashed Taro” by Anna Wu, translated by Carmen Yiling Yan, and enjoy hassle-free child-rearing with digital children in “Baby, I Love You” by Zhao Haihong, translated by Elizabeth Hanlon. In the title story by Wang Nuonuo, translated by Rebecca F. Kuang, a young woman and her admirer travel the world, moving the ocean’s currents to bring about spring. In “Dragonslaying” by Shen Yingying, translated by Emily Xueni Jin, half-fish beings are exploited for their beauty and coveted for their priceless eyes. And in “New Year Painting, Ink and Color on Rice Paper, Zhaoqiao Village” by Chen Qian, also translated by Jin, paintings by a talented child can cure terminal illness, but at a price. Five essays on the art and intricacies of translation add thought-provoking context, musing on how to represent a culture to an unfamiliar audience. This offers much to chew on. (Nov.)
Correction: An earlier version of this review misstated the number of pieces that are included in the collection.
Reviewed on: 11/18/2021