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243 pages, Hardcover
First published April 1, 2020
white authors writing books that are set in asia, but have a set of characters that are 98% white with only a few token, stereotypical asian characters 🥴— lily ☁️ (@sprnklsofdreams) October 17, 2020
“I felt I had hitherto woefully misdirected my energies in attempting to cultivate a personality. If you didn’t have one then that left more room for everyone else’s.”
“The trouble with my body was that I had to carry it around with me.”
“Keeping up with both of them took work, but their similarities lent the enterprise a certain economy of scale.”
“Her accent was churchy, high-up, with all the cathedral drops of English intonation. Button, water, Tuesday – anything with two syllables zipped up then down like a Gothic steeple.”
“We chose what to share. Through composition I reduced my life, burned fat, filed edges. The editing process let me veto post-hoc the painful, boring or irrelevant moments I lived through.”
The lives portrayed in the shows—which revolve around cocktail parties and the small bother of “managing the help“— also validate the perceived image of some expats in the eyes of local citizens: a bunch who are indifferent to the drastic political changes the place they reside is experiencing, as they always know they can leave the city when “the shit hits the fan,” as one US woman who lives in Hong Kong told the Financial Times in April.