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*Local Author* Q.M. Zhang, Accomplice to Memory
Event: Q.M. Zhang, Accomplice to Memory
When: Saturday, April 1, 4:00 pm
Where: The Odyssey Bookshop
Local author Q.M. Zhang (Kimberly Chang) blurs the boundary between fiction and nonfiction to excavate the long lost secrets surrounding her father’s exodus from China during the two decades of civil and world war leading up to the 1949 revolution. Equal parts memoir, novel, and historical documentary, this hybrid text explores the silences and subterfuge of an immigrant parent, and the struggles of the second generation to understand the first. Mixing images and text in the manner of W.G. Sebald, the result is a literary page-turner of one woman racing against time to uncover and reimagine her family's origin story.
Zhang grew up hearing her father’s tall tales spun for Americans about his life in China, but one day—when he is in his 80s—Zhang's father tells her a story she never heard before, and suddenly, all of his previous stories begin to unravel. Before she can get clarity on the new information, her father is hospitalized. Armed with history books and timelines, Zhang sits at her father’s bedside recording accounts of love, espionage, and betrayal. As Zhang follows her father upriver into the interior of a country at war, she is pulled in and along by an uncanny assemblage of images, memories, documents and dreams that inspire and conspire with her own attempts at truth telling.
Q.M. Zhang grew up in upstate New York, has lived in China and Hong Kong, and currently makes her home in Western Massachusetts. She is a writer and teacher of creative non-fiction stories and forms, with a focus on Chinese American border crossings. Trained in the disciplines of anthropology and psychology, she has published ethnographic studies of Asian diasporic communities on both sides of the Pacific. She currently teaches at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA.
Saturday, April 1, 2017 - 4:00pm
The Odyssey Bookshop
9 College St.
South Hadley, MA 01075