Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century
The debut collection from PEN/Hemingway Award finalist and ‘propulsive storyteller’?(NYT Book Review), with stories that are by turns poignant and pulpy
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, as they unmask the contradictions that exist within all of us.
“Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century is one of those rare collections that never suffers from which-one-was-that-again? syndrome. Every story here lights a flame in the memory, shining brighter as time goes by rather than dimming. Kim Fu writes with grace, wit, mischief, daring, and her own deep weird phosphorescent understanding. ” —Kevin Brockmeier, author of The Ghost Variations: One Hundred Stories
"When a collection is evocative of authors as disparate as Ray Bradbury and Stephanie Vaughn, the only possible unifier can be originality: and that’s what a reader finds in Kim Fu’s Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century. The strangest of concepts are tempered by grounded, funny dialogue in these stories, which churn with big ideas and craftily controlled antic energy. —Naben Ruthnum
"How I loved the cool wit of these speculative stories! Filled with wonder and wondering, they’re haunted too by loss and loneliness, their imaginative reach profoundly rooted in the human condition. " —Peter Ho Davies, author of A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself