[VIRTUAL] In Celebration of Straw Dogs of the Universe
[VIRTUAL] In Celebration of Straw Dogs of the Universe


This December, join AAWW on Zoom for a celebration of the Ye Chun’s highly anticipated novel, Straw Dogs of the Universe. She’ll be in conversation with author of A Burning, Megha Majumdar.


A Library Journal Most Anticipated Book of the Year

“Impressive in scope, with unflinching historical detail and effortless storytelling, Ye Chun’s Straw Dogs of the Universe is a magnificent addition to the growing tradition of historical fiction that rectifies the gaps and silences around the contributions of the Chinese workforce to the 19C American West. An unforgettable story of people who, despite horrific violence, betrayal, and loss, grow into the truest and strongest versions of themselves.”

—Melissa Fu, author of Peach Blossom Spring

“Ye Chun writes with depth and precision about the power of the human spirit—its resilience, tenderness, darkness, and yearning—even under the harshest of circumstances. Straw Dogs of the Universe is a luminous, unforgettable story about the terror and beauty of life for Chinese immigrants in the early American West. It will leave you aching by its end.”

—Alexandra Chang, author of Days of Distraction and Tomb Sweeping

“Hauntingly beautiful and exquisitely written, Straw Dogs of the Universe shines much-needed light on a historical period that we must not forget if we want to do better as a human race. This book is a treasure, to be read and re-read, as the best poems should be.”

—Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai, internationally bestselling author of The Mountains Sing and Dust Child

“Ye Chun’s riveting debut novel, Straw Dogs of the Universe, moves seamlessly through several decades in the late 19th century, following four Chinese immigrants as they attempt to start anew in Gold Mountain. The constant search for home and for family underlies it all, and Ye Chun’s mesmerizing prose brings their stories—of hope and hardship and love—to unforgettable life.”

—Laura Spence-Ash, author of Beyond That, the Sea

“A visceral and poetic work of art—Ye Chun’s grasp of our shared history, of her unforgettable characters, and of the vast sweep of this narrative can only be marveled at: who else could tell us the story of Chinese settlement in California as if it were an adventure tale filtered through the lens of Thomas Hardy? That the writing here is so insightful, so clear and vibrant and heartbreaking, is a testament to the overwhelming talent of one of our finest authors.”

—Brian Castleberry, author of Nine Shiny Objects

Ye Chun is a bilingual Chinese American writer and literary translator. Her debut story collection, Hao, was longlisted for the 2022 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. She is also the author of two books of poetry, Travel Over Water and Lantern Puzzle; a novel in Chinese, Peach Tree in the Sea; and four volumes of translations. A recipient of an NEA Literature Fellowship, a Sustainable Arts Foundation Award, and three Pushcart Prizes, she teaches at Providence College and lives in Providence, Rhode Island.

Megha Majumdar is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel A Burning, which was nominated for the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Prize, and the American Library Association’s Andrew Carnegie Medal. It was named one of the best books of the year by media including The Washington Post, The New York Times, NPR, The Atlantic, Vogue, and TIME Magazine. A 2022 Whiting Award winner, she lives in New York and teaches at Princeton University.



This event is online and will be auto-captioned on Zoom. Attendance is free and open to the public.

[VIRTUAL] In Celebration of Straw Dogs of the Universe

Thursday, December 7, 2023
7:00 PM

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