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Hong Kong Noir (Akashic noir series)

HK$125.00

Edited by Jason Y. Ng and Susan Blumberg-Kason

Published in association with Akashic Books

Akashic continues its groundbreaking series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each story is set in a distinct neighbourhood or location within the city of the book.

Hong Kong Noir features brand-new stories by Jason Y. Ng, Xu Xi, Marshall Moore, Brittani Sonnenberg, Tiffany Hawk, James Tam, Rhiannon Jenkins Tsang, Christina Liang, Feng Chi-shun, Charles Philipp Martin, Shannon Young, Shen Jian, Carmen Suen and Ysabelle Cheung.

What will Hong Kong look like in five years, ten years, or thirty years when the “one country, two systems” promise expires? It’s impossible to foresee. Hong Kong’s future may be beyond our control, but some things aren’t. We can continue to write about our beloved city and work our hardest to preserve it in words.

When we asked our contributors to write their noir stories, we didn’t give them specific content guidelines other than to make sure their stories end on a dark note. What we received was a brilliant collection of ghost stories, murder mysteries, domestic dramas, cops-and-robbers tales, and historical thrillers that capture Hong Kong in all its dark glory. The result is every bit as eclectic, quirky, and delightful as the city they write about.

Look inside this book
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Contents and Introduction

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Description

What will Hong Kong look like in five years, ten years, or thirty years when the “one country, two systems” promise expires? It’s impossible to foresee. Hong Kong’s future may be beyond our control, but some things aren’t. We can continue to write about our beloved city and work our hardest to preserve it in words.

When we asked our contributors to write their noir stories, we didn’t give them specific content guidelines other than to make sure their stories end on a dark note. What we received was a brilliant collection of ghost stories, murder mysteries, domestic dramas, cops-and-robbers tales, and historical thrillers that capture Hong Kong in all its dark glory. The result is every bit as eclectic, quirky, and delightful as the city they write about.

REVIEWS

“Ng and Blumberg-Kason defy the fates by presenting a collection of 14 stories — by Chinese tradition, an ominous number — illustrating their city’s dark side. [Their] Hong Kong is a city on the brink, haunted by its past but facing an uncertain future. Readers can feel lucky to have such a collection.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Hong Kong is a city of breathtaking highs and earth-shattering lows, luxury and poverty, excess and want, and this new collection of 14 tales from Hong Kong’s best crime writers showcases the extremes of one of the world’s capitals. From ghost stories, to historical thrills, to underworld brutality, Hong Kong Noir, like the city it captures, is as endlessly fascinating as it is impossible to define.” — CrimeReads

“Elegiac rather than horrific, more melancholic than murderous, Hong Kong Noir’s fourteen tales collectively evoke past and contemporary visions of a city steeped in tradition and street-lore even at the heights of its ambitious, restless modernity. In this anthology of short stories, fourteen writers with varied relationships to Hong Kong write of widely contrasting facets of their home or adopted city.” — Akin Jeje, Cha: A Literary Journal

Since the inception of film noir in the 1940s, Hong Kong has been no stranger to darkness: thrilling cop chases in old industrial areas, silhouettes of femme fatales mystified by a thin cold mist, pallid faces of the downtrodden glowing under neon signs, to name but a few. Yet as the international fame of Hong Kong’s cinematic darkness was pushed to its apex by filmmakers such as Yuen Woo-ping, Wong Kar-wai and Kuei Chih-hung, it may come as a surprise that the city’s first volume of noir literature is only — and finally — being published. Zabrina Lo, Zolima City Magazine

“Since the cinema that served as modern Hong Kong’s introduction to the world was such a hodgepodge of triad gangsters, crooked cops, ghosts, prostitutes and clueless romantics — sometimes all in the same film — one should hardly be surprised when a literary anthology shows the same genre-busting proclivities.” Ken Smith, Asian Review of Books

“Hong Kong may be known for its cold-hearted capitalism and ultra-modern efficiency, but it is also a society steeped in tradition and superstitions. Fortune-tellers hold sway over tycoons, property giants avoid having an unlucky fourth floor in buildings, and shrines shrouded in incense smoke sit among the world’s most expensive real estate.” Joyce Lau, South China Morning Post

Additional information

Weight300 g
Dimensions133 × 209 mm
Pages

244

Binding

Paperback

About the editors

JASON Y. NG is the bestselling author of Hong Kong State of Mind, No City for Slow Men, and Umbrellas in Bloom — the first book in English to chronicle the Umbrella Movement of 2014. His short stories have appeared in numerous anthologies. Ng is also an adjunct associate law professor at the University of Hong Kong and president of PEN Hong Kong.

SUSAN BLUMBERG-KASON is the author of Good Chinese Wife: A Love Affair With China Gone Wrong. Her writing has also appeared in the Los Angeles Review of Books China Blog and China channel, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, Asian Jewish Life, and several Hong Kong anthologies. She received an MPhil in government and public administration from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Blumberg-Kason lives in Chicago and frequently travels to Hong Kong.