“A mesmerizing and deeply felt debut that affirms all that is great about short fiction.”
— DAVE EGGERS
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PRAISE FOR LAST OF HER NAME
"Last of Her Name is a mesmerizing and deeply felt debut that affirms all that is great about short fiction. Lok’s collection brings startling intimacy to her characters, all of them struggling with dislocation and belonging. “Woman in the Closet,” has to be considered a new classic. I can’t think of a collection that better speaks to this moment of global movement and collective rupture from homes and history, and the struggle to find meaning despite it all.”
— DAVE EGGERS, author of The Parade
“What a basket of jewels! Each of these stories is elegant, poignant and multi-faceted. A true pleasure.”
— GISH JEN, author of The Girl at the Baggage Claim
“A truly beautiful and wide ranging collection. There is love, longing, grief, displacement, endurance. And from the gut punch of the opening story to the wonderful novella that anchors the book, not a word is wasted. So many lines spoke directly in my ear: “Night after night they sleep, but rarely at the same time. Without knowing it they take turns watching each other.” A book to stay up with, a book that will make you not want to sleep..”
— PETER ORNER, author of Maggie Brown & Others
"Assured and keenly observed stories about the devastations—large and small—that transpire between people. Rendered in prose that's no-nonsense, darkly funny, and lovely all at once, Lok’s stories carry quiet but undeniable impact. This is a book that stays with you long after you've put it down. It makes you wonder, as good books should, what on earth is going on in each of our brains."
— RACHEL KHONG, author of Goodbye, Vitamin
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ABOUT THE BOOK
LAST OF HER NAME is an eye-opening story collection about the intimate, interconnected lives of diasporic women and the histories they are born into. Set in a wide range of time periods and locales, including 80s UK suburbia, WWII Hong Kong and urban California, LAST OF HER NAME features an eclectic cast of outsiders: among them, an elderly housebreaker, wounded lovers, and kung-fu fighting teenage girls.
In the novella “The Woman In The Closet,” a homeless woman finds refuge in the unlikeliest of places, while in “Motet”, a teenage girl navigates art and emotional allegiances with her ex-opera singer stepmother. In “The Wrong Dave,” a soon-to-be-married architect takes up a covert correspondence with a grief-stricken woman who may or may not be writing to the right person. “Wedding Night” centers on an unconventional romance threatened by societal mores. The title story follows the parallel, interweaving journeys of a mother and daughter as they grapple with their respective foes, taking us from the suburbs of England to a Chinese village on the eve of World War II, and exploring the hidden lives and secret histories within an immigrant family. Collectively, LAST OF HER NAME offers a unique exploration of love, longing, and endurance.