The Asian American Journalists Association — Twin Cities Chapter, and Magers & Quinn Booksellers, present two exciting author reading and book signing events Uptown Minneapolis.
Author Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan will be reading from an anthology she edited titled “Singapore Noir” (Akashic Books), on June 30, 7 p.m., at Magers & Quinn Booksellers, 3038 Hennepin Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55408.
Eden Prairie High School senior Yanna Gong will be speaking about her book “Gaokao: A Personal Journey Behind China’s Examination Culture,” on Wednesday July 2, 7 p.m., also at Magers & Quinn Booksellers.
These events are co-hosted by the Minnesota chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association, winner of chapter of the year in 1997 and 2011. AAJA is a nonprofit professional and educational organization with more than 1,500 members today.
AAJA serves Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders by encouraging young people to consider journalism as a career, developing managers in the media industry, and promoting fair and accurate news coverage.
Born and raised in Singapore, Tan is a New York-based journalist and author of “A Tiger In The Kitchen: A Memoir of Food & Family“ (Hyperion, 2011). She was a staff writer at the Wall Street Journal, In Style magazine and the Baltimore Sun.
An active member of the Asian American Journalists Association, Tan served on its national board for seven years, ending in 2010.
Tan is editor of the Akashic Books “Singapore Noir”, an award-winning series of groundbreaking and original noir anthologies with stories set in distinct neighborhoods and locations within the city of the book.
Singapore Noir features brand-new stories by: Colin Goh, Simon Tay/Donald Tee Quee Ho, Philip Jeyaretnam, Colin Cheong, Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan, Monica Bhide, S.J. Rozan, Lawrence Osborne, Suchen Christine Lim, Ovidia Yu, Damon Chua, Johann S. Lee, Dave Chua, and Nury Vittachi.
Tan will be joined by Steven Horwitz, co-editor of Twin Cities Noir. Horwitz has worked in publishing for over 30 years. His is the coeditor of Amplified: Fiction from Leading Alt-Country, Indy Rock, Blues and Folk Musicians. He lives with his wife and two dogs in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Akashic Books’ award-winning Noir Series now has over sixty volumes offering sinister literary tours of national and international cities. The series has been recognized with nominations and awards throughout the mystery and literary world, from the Shamus, Derringer, Macavity, and Anthony awards to the Pushcart Prize. Two stories published in the series have won the Edgar for Best Short Story, and in 2013, Akashic publisher Johnny Temple was awarded the Ellery Queen Award.
Yanna Gong’s “Gaokao” (pronounced gow cow) otherwise known as the National College Entrance Examination, is the modern Chinese version of an examination system that has flourished since the days of Imperial China, when the only way to social advancement in the civil service system depended on the results of rigorous national examinations.
Today, the meaning of gaokao has extended to describe the feverish excitement and trepidation engulfing Asian and non-Asian students and parents alike as they prepare for a potentially life-changing examination. Readers in the United States will see the resemblance to our own gaokaos, whether it be AP, SAT, GRE, Med School, Law School, etc., where success in the test is seen as the key to success in life.
Growing up in both Chinese and American cultures, Yanna Gong brings a unique perspective to her experience of educational values in both countries. Instances from her own life show how the often-relentless drive toward academic excellence is an unquestioned imperative for many Asian and Asian-American kids, as well as entire families, whose collective devotion (and neurosis) is fast becoming a global phenomenon. What, however, is the cost, both physically and psychologically? Is there a darker side to producing super students? Anyone who has admired or been appalled by the Tiger Mom or Wolf Dad will find Gaokao a must-read book.
For more information call 612-822-4611 or visit www.magersandquinn.com.