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“We Two Alone” Book Talk with Jack Wang
September 21 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm FREE
Author and alumnus Jack Wang (BSc ’94 Innis) returns to Innis to launch his debut collection We Two Alone (House of Anansi Press, 2020).
Poet and novelist Gil Adamson (pictured right; photo by Jean-Luc Bertini), a 2020 Giller Prize nominee, will moderate the discussion that follows.
(Photo of Jack Wang, above, by Mike Grippi)
A masterful collection of stories that dramatizes the Chinese diaspora across the globe over the past hundred years, We Two Alone is Jack Wang’s astonishing debut work of fiction.
Set on five continents and spanning nearly a century, We Two Alone traces the long arc and evolution of the Chinese immigrant experience. A young laundry boy risks his life to play organized hockey in Canada in the 1920s. A Canadian couple gets caught in the outbreak of violence in Shanghai during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The consul general of China attempts to save lives following Kristallnacht in Vienna. A family struggles to buy a home in South Africa during the rise of apartheid. An actor in New York struggles to keep his career alive while yearning to reconcile with his estranged wife.
From the vulnerable and disenfranchised to the educated and elite, the characters in this extraordinary collection embody the diversity of the diaspora at key moments in history and in contemporary times. Jack Wang has crafted deeply affecting stories that not only subvert expectations but contend with mortality and delicately draw out the intimacies and failings of love.
Jack Wang received a BSc from the University of Toronto (Innis College), an MFA from the University of Arizona, and a PhD in English with an emphasis in creative writing from Florida State University. In 2014–15, he held the David T. K. Wong Creative Writing Fellowship at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England, and in 2020, he was awarded a residency at Historic Joy Kogawa House in Vancouver. Stories in his debut collection, We Two Alone, have been shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and longlisted for the Journey Prize, and have appeared in PRISM International, the Malahat Review, the New Quarterly, the Humber Literary Review, and Joyland. Originally from Vancouver, Jack Wang is an associate professor in the Department of Writing at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York, where he lives with his wife, novelist Angelina Mirabella, and their two daughters.
Gil Adamson is the critically acclaimed author of Ridgerunner, currently out from House of Anansi Press, and of the award-winning novel, The Outlander (2007, Anansi). She is also the author of a collection of linked stories, Help Me, Jacques Cousteau (Anansi), and two poetry collections, Primitive (Coach House Press) and Ashland (ECW Press).