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C Pam Zhang, How Much of These Hills is Gold at Bookshop Santa Cruz
May 6, 2020 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm PDTFree
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This free event will take place at Bookshop Santa Cruz. Chairs for open seating are usually set up about an hour before the event begins. If you have any ADA accommodation requests, please email firstname.lastname@example.org by May 4th.
An electric debut novel set against the twilight of the American gold rush, two siblings are on the run in an unforgiving landscape–trying not just to survive but to find a home.
Ba dies in the night; Ma is already gone. Newly orphaned children of immigrants, Lucy and Sam are suddenly alone in a land that refutes their existence. Fleeing the threats of their western mining town, they set off to bury their father in the only way that will set them free from their past. Along the way, they encounter giant buffalo bones, tiger paw prints, and the specters of a ravaged landscape as well as family secrets, sibling rivalry, and glimpses of a different kind of future.
Both epic and intimate, blending Chinese symbolism and re-imagined history with fiercely original language and storytelling, How Much of These Hills Is Gold is a haunting adventure story, an unforgettable sibling story, and the announcement of a stunning new voice in literature. On a broad level, it explores race in an expanding country and the question of where immigrants are allowed to belong. But page by page, it’s about the memories that bind and divide families, and the yearning for home.
Born in Beijing but mostly an artifact of the United States, C Pam Zhang has lived in thirteen cities across four countries and is still looking for home. She’s been awarded support from Tin House, Bread Loaf, Aspen Words and elsewhere, and currently lives in San Francisco.
“[An] extraordinary debut. . . Gorgeously written and fearlessly imagined, Zhang’s awe-inspiring novel introduces two indelible characters whose odyssey is as good as the gold they seek.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“C Pam Zhang’s debut is ferocious, dark and gleaming, a book erupting out of the interstices between myth and dream, between longing and belonging. How Much of These Hills Is Gold tells us that stories–like people, like the rough and stunning landscape of California itself–are constantly in the process of being made, broken, and finally remade into something tender and new.” –Lauren Groff, New York Times-bestselling author of Fates and Furies
“A haunting, riveting and truly remarkable debut. Zhang writes with the clear-eyed lucidity of ancient myth-makers whose eyes are attuned to the vicissitudes of nature and humanity.”–Chigozie Obioma, author of Booker Prize finalist An Orchestra of Minorities
“A ravishingly written revisionist story of the making of the West, C Pam Zhang’s debut is pure gold.” –Emma Donoghue, author of Room