Slow Hot Paperback by Andy Choi
What if love could save you but also kill you? That is the riddle at the heart of this iconoclastic, playful, prismatic debut novel. In Slow Hot our world is remade and revealed in what is almost like a firefly opera—brilliant flashes in the dark spelling out Choi's vision of what America both is and could become—a placeless empire committed to war at any cost, where survival requires of you something you may never be able to provide. And yet this is offered in a profound and even gentle way. We learn, in the process, the consolations of a vision with no false hopes.
~ Alexander Chee, author of Edinburgh
The principal narratives of Slow Hot intersect, contrast and complement one another like the panels in an intricate silk bojagi. Shards of text depicting our digital alienation and oversaturated connectivity in the age of apocalypse cut into a young Korean’s journey home, the ghosts he encounters there, the shamanistic reinvention of his queer voice in the oppressive sweat of a subtropical forest. Like the invasive species he mentions, from Asia to North America, Choi vividly captures not only a sense of transpacific longing, but the need to belong on a more elemental level, so that whichever direction he takes us all we can do is marvel at what he creates along the way and thank him most profusely for the trip, for the refuge it gave us.
~ Gary J Shipley, author of Warewolff!