A debut novel that is a) moving b) unusual c) beautifully written, and d) funny. The story of a young woman whose life plan (Phd in Chemistry from Famous University, marriage to Perfect Boyfriend) dissolves and slips right out of her hands as we watch. If I were as smart as she is, I'd write this review as a chemical equation. Since I'm not, I'll just say that this is one of the best novels I've read in a long time.— Kathy
Winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award A Washington Post Notable Book One of the Best Books of the Year: NPR, Entertainment Weekly, Ann Patchett on PBS NewsHour, Minnesota Public Radio, PopSugar, Maris Kreizman, The Morning News Winner of Ploughshares' John C. Zacharis Award
Winner of a Whiting Award A Belletrist Amuse Book
At first glance, the quirky, overworked narrator of Weike Wang's debut novel seems to be on the cusp of a perfect life: she is studying for a prestigious PhD in chemistry that will make her Chinese parents proud (or at least satisfied), and her successful, supportive boyfriend has just proposed to her. But instead of feeling hopeful, she is wracked with ambivalence: the long, demanding hours at the lab have created an exquisite pressure cooker, and she doesn't know how to answer the marriage question. When it all becomes too much and her life plan veers off course, she finds herself on a new path of discoveries about everything she thought she knew. Smart, moving, and always funny, this unique coming-of-age story is certain to evoke a winning reaction.
About the Author
Weike Wang is a graduate of Harvard University, where she earned her undergraduate degree in chemistry and her doctorate in public health. Her first novel, Chemistry, received the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut Fiction, Ploughshares' John C. Zacharis Award, and a Whiting Award. A "5 Under 35" honoree of the National Book Foundation, Weike currently lives in New York City.