Isham Cook

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Isham Cook

Goodreads Author

in Chicago, The United States



Ballard, Beckett, Borges, Dick, Kafka, Hesse, Melville, Mishima, Sade ...more

Member Since
January 2012


American novelist and essayist based in China since 1994. Writing philosophy: downmarket, big concept, provocative, discriminating, outrageous. Kirkus Reviews calls my second novel The Kitchens of Canton "poignant...language barriers abound, with dialogue in Cantonese, Italian, and Latin, but Cook isn’t merely interested in verbal language—body language, customs and rituals, and symbols are also on full display. The book also explores Americans’ complicated relationship with sex, juxtaposing it against their seemingly comfortable relationships with weapons and violence. An insightful, unconventional, and risqué view of present-day culture."

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Isham Cook I call it "writer's logjam"--too many ideas get tangled up and need to be painstakingly sorted out. It's hard work at times, more with argumentative…moreI call it "writer's logjam"--too many ideas get tangled up and need to be painstakingly sorted out. It's hard work at times, more with argumentative than narrative writing. I need to devote a whole morning or afternoon exclusively to breaking up the logjam. No other way around it.(less)
Isham Cook You can exorcise your demons and trap them in bound paper.
Average rating: 4.26 · 545 ratings · 66 reviews · 6 distinct works
American Rococo: Essays on ...

4.23 avg rating — 245 ratings — published 2017 — 4 editions
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The Kitchens of Canton

4.34 avg rating — 241 ratings3 editions
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At the Teahouse Cafe: Essay...

4.05 avg rating — 21 ratings — published 2015 — 3 editions
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Lust & Philosophy

3.88 avg rating — 16 ratings — published 2012 — 8 editions
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Massage and the Writer

4.25 avg rating — 8 ratings — published 2014 — 13 editions
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The Exact Unknown and Other...

3.93 avg rating — 14 ratings — published 2014 — 9 editions
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View of Yellow Crane Tower in old Wuchang (photo by Isham Cook)

A walk down old Wuchang’s Tanhualin historic pedestrian street takes you past boutiques, cafés and nineteenth-century Western consulates and missions, before ending at grimy Deshengqiao, more alley than street, where a left turn plunges you into a more authentic China of milling crowds and open-front shops selling fish...

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Published on June 11, 2018 07:29 • 8 views

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Isham’s Recent Updates

Isham Cook is now friends with Ulf Ekhoey
Isham Cook added a status update: My new release and 5th book AMERICAN ROCOCO: ESSAYS ON THE EDGE is now available on Amazon, Smashwords and NetGalley.
220 79205
走得越远,离自己越近 The Farther I Walk, The Closer I Get To Me by Hong  Mei
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Isham Cook is now following Kim Jefferson's reviews
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“But the outcome was inevitable: she assumed you would not take no for an answer; she could already see your charming smile morph into the grimace of a rabid dog. To”
Isham Cook, Lust and Philosophy

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A book club for those of us who enjoy the Post-Apocalyptic/Dystopian genre. Each month there will be a poll so we can find out what our next book will ...more
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A celebration and conversation of all literature that is of the intelligent dark humor or satirical variety.
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The book club for those who like to expand their reading tastes beyond the current fads and aims to introduce readers to great cult and obscure author ...more
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A place where all Goodreads members can work together to improve the Goodreads book catalog. Non-librarians are welcome to join the group as well, to ...more
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