This is the first short story I’ve read from Ken Liu and I loved it.
It’s a story about Jack, born to an American father and a Chinese mother. His mom made lots of origami animals for him when he was a kid. However, as he grows up, he found it hard to fit in where they live. An incident with a friend later caused him to distance himself from his mother until it became uncomfortable and they eventually stopped talking to each other. Soon his mom died but there was one surprise left for Jack…
In just a few pages, this story will really touch your heart. The ending was so sad and you will feel the regret the child must have felt. It kind of left my heart heavy but lots of things to reflect on.
The book opens with Pearl Tull about to die. Her youngest son, Ezra, with her. Jenny her daughter visits while Cody, her eldest is nowhere near. It’s the story of these four individuals in alternating chapters.
This is my first Anne Tyler read and I loved her writing and the way she develops her characters. The author was also able to depict what really happens in a family, petty jealousies and stuff. Realistic really.
It is a very touching story of survival of a family with damaged individuals.
“When you have children, you’re obligated to live.”
“…he thought of dying as a kind of adventure, something new that he hadn’t yet experienced. Like an unusual vacation trip.”
“There ought to be a while separate language, she thought, for words that are truer than other words – for perfect, absolute truth. It was the purest fact of her life: she did not understand him, and she never would.”