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E. Lily Yu

E. Lily Yu received the Artist Trust / LaSalle Storyteller Award in 2017 and the Astounding Award for Best New Writer in 2012. Her stories appear in venues from McSweeney’s to Tor.com and in eleven best-of-the-year anthologies, and have been finalists for the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, Sturgeon, and World Fantasy Awards. She has lived on both coasts and holds degrees from Princeton and Cornell.

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On Fragile Waves: Lyrical, moving, and at times heartrending

On Fragile Waves by E. Lily Yu

In the opening pages of On Fragile Waves (2021), by E. Lily Yu, young Firuzeh, her brother Naur, and their parents are on the start of a long journey from war-torn Kabul to the hope of a better life in Australia. To pass the time on that first leg, Firuzeh’s mother entertains them with a fairy tale. But the novel will be no fairy tale, as the family makes its way through Pakistan to Indonesia to an immigration detention camp on Nauru Island and finally to Australia itself, facing loss and discrimination, poverty and indignity, and a long-standing instability and uncertainty that erodes their family ties. Filled with poetry, fairy tales, and flashes of magical realism in the form of a drowned girl who remains Firuzeh’s best friend, On Fragile Waves is a lyrical, moving, and at times heartrending story.

The journey is fraught with... Read More