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Thank You, Mr. Nixon  By  cover art

Thank You, Mr. Nixon

By: Gish Jen
Narrated by: Justin Chien,Catherine Ho,Annie Q,Eunice Wong
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Publisher's Summary

The acclaimed, award-winning author of The Resisters takes measure of the fifty years since the opening of China and its unexpected effects on the lives of ordinary people. It is a unique book that only Jen could write—a story collection accruing the power of a novel as it proceeds—a work that Cynthia Ozick has called “an art beyond art. It is life itself.”

Beginning with a cheery letter penned by a Chinese girl in heaven to “poor Mr. Nixon” in hell, Gish Jen embarks on a fictional journey through U.S.-China relations, capturing the excitement of a world on the brink of tectonic change.

Opal Chen reunites with her Chinese sisters after forty years; newly cosmopolitan Lulu Koo wonders why Americans “like to walk around in the woods with the mosquitoes”; Hong Kong parents go to extreme lengths to reestablish contact with their “number-one daughter” in New York; and Betty Koo, brought up on “no politics, just make money,” finds she must reassess her mother’s philosophy.

With their profound compassion and equally profound humor, these eleven linked stories trace the intimate ways in which humans make and are made by history, capturing an extraordinary era in an extraordinary way. Delightful, provocative, and powerful, Thank You, Mr. Nixon furnishes yet more proof of Gish Jen’s eminent place among American storytellers.

©2022 Gish Jen (P)2022 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“Marvelous . . . On the surface her storytelling seems simple and direct, but the closer you look the more layered and complex it becomes. Through characters distracted by the superficial colors of their lives, Jen invites her readers to consider profound questions about history, ancestry and identity . . . In all her work, Jen locates the tensions between inherited and lived cultures.”—The New York Times

“Brilliant . . . An exceptional collection, written with intelligence, wit and grace—it’s one of the best books of Jen's remarkable career. . . . The collection ends with a heartbreaker of a story, ‘Detective Dog,’ . . . Emotional but measured, it’s as close to flawless as a story can be . . . It could well be one of the first great short stories of the COVID-19 pandemic . . . Every story in this collection, though, is outstanding.”—NPR

“A collection to treasure. [Jen] creates a panoramic universe of deftly sketched tales both comic and tragic. Her prose sparkles with clarity and moves with deceptive simplicity toward profound conclusions.”The Boston Globe

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Wonderful collection of stories

Very moving stories about families, culture, immigrants, prejudice and of powerful ending story of Detective Dog.

1 person found this helpful

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Eye opener to the Chinese Soul

Amazing short stories that get to the heart of Chinese and American cultural differences at this important time for better understanding between us.

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Fantastic

Terrific reading of terrific stories. Every one was different but compelling, and you definitely don’t have to be Asian American to enjoy them. In fact The opening of China has changed the world for us all. Makes you think. Highly recommend.