Waiting, by Ha Jin
"In Waiting, Ha Jin portrays the life of Lin Kong, a dedicated doctor torn by his love for two women: one who belongs to the New China of the Cultural Revolution, the other to the ancient traditions of his family's village. Ha Jin profoundly understands the conflict between the individual and society, between the timeless universality of the human heart and constantly shifting politics of the moment. With wisdom, restraint, and empathy for all his characters, he vividly reveals the complexities and subtleties of a world and a people we desperately need to know."--Judges' Citation, National Book Award
Out, by Natsuo Kirino
This mesmerizing novel tells the story of a brutal murder in the staid Tokyo suburbs, as a young mother who works the night shift making boxed lunches strangles her abusive husband and then seeks the help of her coworkers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime. The coolly intelligent Masako emerges as the plot’s ringleader, but quickly discovers that this killing is merely the beginning, as it leads to a terrifying foray into the violent underbelly of Japanese society.
At once a masterpiece of literary suspense and pitch-black comedy of gender warfare, Out is also a moving evocation of the pressures and prejudices that drive women to extreme deeds, and the friendships that bolster them in the aftermath.
The Tapestries, by Kien Nguyen
This epic tale of romance and revenge - widely acclaimed for its suspense, emotional complexity, colorful settings, and storytelling brio - immerses us in the world of Dan Nguyen, a spirited young boy in turn-of-the-century Vietnam. After being thrust into an arranged marriage at age seven, Dan secretly witnesses his father's beheading, escapes certain death by being sold into servitude, and ultimately is forced to choose between passion and family honor when he falls in love with the one woman he can never have.
Contest will end March 8th.