Preorder for February 1, 2022
“Every day stories riddled with fabulist features (think: Carmen Maria Machado or Kelly Link), this collection is pleasantly disturbing.
Kim Fu explores humanity’s deepest truths even while the settings and plot devices exist mainly in the near future or in a time that, without a giant leap into a fantastical realm, is not possible. Everything from our current social reality to that flicker of a moment between innocent childhood and puberty to the tense inner conflict of being gaslit is dissected in writing that is so naturalistic you almost forget girls don’t really grow wings out of their ankles or that the tech to create a wish simulation doesn’t exist (yet). In other words, the emotional weight of being human is inescapable no matter how the world around us changes.”
A dazzling and daring debut story collection by PEN/Hemingway finalist, Kim Fu.
In the twelve unforgettable tales of Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century, the strange is made familiar and the familiar strange, such that a girl growing wings on her legs feels like an ordinary rite of passage, while a bug-infested house becomes an impossible, Kafkaesque nightmare. Each story builds a new world all its own: a group of children steal a haunted doll; a runaway bride encounters a sea monster; a vendor sells toy boxes that seemingly control the passage of time; an insomniac is seduced by the Sandman. These visions of modern life wrestle with themes of death and technological consequence, guilt and sexuality, and unmask the contradictions that exist within all of us.
Mesmerizing, electric, and wholly original, Kim Fu’s Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century blurs the boundaries of the real and fantastic, offering intricate and surprising insights into human nature.