- AACP, Inc.

The Barbarians Are Coming

Home About Contact New Specials Browsing Searching Ordering Conference Links Help

The Barbarians Are Coming

By David Wong Louie
2000, 372 pages, hardback.
Book Description from the Front Cover Flap
Comments from the Front Cover Flap and Back Cover
About the Author

ORDER -- Item #2870, Price $23.95

Request More Information

Go to New Books Page

Book Description from the Front Cover Flap

Sterling Lung grew up in the back of his parents' laundry dreaming of being an American, while speaking Chinese to his mother, English to his friends, and very little to the father he seemed always to disappoint.

Now twenty-six and a graduate of Swarthmore and the Culinary Institute of America, Sterling cooks French food for the Wasp ladies of a private club and conducts an arm's-length affair with a Jewish-American princess, thereby frustrating his father's dream of a doctor son and his mother's scheme for a Chinese bride. For Sterling's parents, the barbarians are already here.

In a tale that alternates between black comedy and out-and-out slapstick, between the pain of a son alienated from his father and that of a father alienated from his son's native land, The Barbarians Are Coming is a template of the American immigrant experience: of the deracination of the second generation, the wrenching losses of the first, and the legacy of misunderstanding that binds the two. By turns antic and deeply moving, it is, ultimately, a powerful depiction of the Chinese-American experience and a profoundly affecting novel about fathers and sons.

Back to the Top

Comments from the Front Cover Flap and Back Cover

Front Cover Flap

"To say that David Wong Louie is unique is to state the pure truth. He has broken the silence of Chinese men in America. He has done it with elegance, wit, style and erudition and a pure respect for the silence itself."
Los Angeles Times Book Review
First Fiction Award citation

Back Cover

David Wong Louie's
Pangs of Love

"Louie is elegant, funny, a touch spooky, and he has as fine a hair-trigger control of alienation and absurdity as any of the best of his generation."
New York Newsday

"Louie's work transcends the restrictions of ethnic labels and markets. He's not just a talented young Asian-American writer, he's a talented young writer, period."
Los Angeles Times Book Review

"Darkly humorous ... a splendid debut."

"David Wong Louie is in a class by himself.... He takes quirky, smart characters in improbable scenarios, blends them with social commentary and kinky humor, and comes up with concoctions that are refreshingly original."
National Public Radio's Morning Edition

"I hope Mr. Louie's book is translated into Chinese. My grandmother and I could then read it together."
The Miami Herald

"Louie is particularly sharp when examining the cracks between generations.... What he conveys most successfully is the desire to absent oneself from a place both too familiar and completely foreign."
--Voice Literary Supplement

Back to the Top

Background on David Wong Louie

David Wong Louie is the author of the short story collection Pangs of Love, which was a New York Times Notable Book of 1991 and a Voice Literary Supplement Favorite of the same year. That collection went on to win the Los Angeles Times First Fiction Award and the Ploughshares First Fiction Book Award.

Mr. Louie lives in Venice, California, and teaches at UCLA.

Back to the Top

AACP Home Page
About | Contact | New | Browsing | Searching | Sales | Conference | Help | Links
Purchasing | Ordering

Copyright © 2000 by AACP, Inc.
Most recent revision Nov. 26, 2000