Author Xu Xi reads from her latest essays collection Evanescent Isles. An unusual book of quirky essays, some deeply personal, Xu Xi writes from within, of Hong Kong’s vanishing culture and sensibility as it transforms itself into a space that is 21st Century China. She zooms in on her own life in the city: on family, friends and a professional history as both business executive and author, on moments that offer wry observations of the shifting world around her. She casts her eye on films, pop stars, public transportation, and muses on the political, without losing sight of the distinctly apolitical culture that evolved through a history as the former British colony and Chinese “Special Administrative Region” after the 1997 “handover.”
Xu Xi will be in conversation with author Jess Row, College of New Jersey author of the short story collection The Train to Lowu set in Hong Kong and Asia. Reception, book sales and signing follow this reading and conversation between authors Xu Xi and Jess Row.
Xu Xi (www.xuxiwriter.com) is one of Hong Kong’s leading English language writers. She is the author of six books of fiction and essays, including Overleaf Hong Kong: Stories and Essays of the Chinese, Overseas and the novel The Unwalled City. She has also edited several anthologies of Hong Kong writing. Recent awards include the inaugural MAN Asian Literary Award shortlist, an O. Henry Prize Story, the first English language Writer-In-Residence at Lingnan University, and the Bedell Distinguished Visiting Writer at the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Writing Program. She is on the prose faculty at Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA in Writing and also teaches writing internationally at various universities. A Chinese-Indonesian native of Hong Kong, she currently inhabits the flight path along New York, Hong Kong and the South Island of New Zealand.