From the beloved award-winning author of Native Speaker and The Surrendered, a highly provocative, deeply affecting story of one woman's legendary quest in a shocking, future America
ON SUCH A FULL SEA takes Chang-rae Lee's elegance of prose, his masterly storytelling, and his long-standing interests in identity, culture, work, and love, and lifts them to a new plane. Stepping from the realistic and historical territories of his previous work, Lee brings us into a world created from scratch. Against a vividly imagined future America, Lee tells a stunning, surprising, and riveting story that will change the way readers think about the world they live in.
In a future, long-declining America, society is strictly stratified by class. Long-abandoned urban neighbourhoods have been repurposed as highwalled, self-contained labour colonies. And the members of the labour class-descendants of those brought over en masse many years earlier from environmentally ruined provincial China-find purpose and identity in their work to provide pristine produce and fish to the small, elite, satellite charter villages that ring the labour settlement.
In this world lives Fan, a female fish-tank diver, who leaves her home in the B-Mor settlement (once known as Baltimore), when the man she loves mysteriously disappears. Fan's journey to find him takes her out of the safety of B-Mor, through the anarchic Open Counties, where crime is rampant with scant governmental oversight, and to a faraway charter village, in a quest that will soon become legend to those she left behind.
Watching a talented writer take a risk is one of the pleasures of devoted reading, and On Such a Full Sea provides all that and more...His marvelous new book, which imagines a future after the breakdown of our own society, takes on those concerns with his customary mastery of quiet detail - and a touch of the fantastic - New York Times Book Review
Similar to Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go . . . a strange, skilful performance - Independent
The Road suddenly feels unthreatening in contrast to Chang-rae Lee's engrossing new novel . . . [a] fine entry into this tradition - Financial Times
Fascinating . . . for all its adventure narrative, it is underpinned by a solid and shrewd reading of present-day American economics - Guardian