Join Elaine Chiew and Kit on Instagram live as they chat about Fan’s fantastic elegiac debut novel Diamond Hill, which is set in Hong Kong and is filled with a quirky set of characters that are at once edgy but also Very Hong Kong. Chiew and Fan will chat about the layering of languages within Diamond Hill’s prose (the use of some choice Cantonese swear words, perhaps) as well as how that adds to the experience of reading Fan’s exquisite and poetic writing.
More about Diamond Hill:
It is 1987 and three years since Britain signed the Joint Declaration agreeing to hand over its last colony, Hong Kong, to China in 1997. With that declaration comes the promise that the city will remain unchanged for fifty years. But upheaval is already happening in Diamond Hill. Once the ‘Hollywood of the Orient,’ it is now a shanty town and an eyesore right in the middle of a glitzy financial hub. Buddha, a recovering heroin addict, returns home to find the shabby neighborhood being bulldozed to make room for gleaming towers. Buddhist nuns, drug gangs, property developers, the government and foreign powers each have itchy palms, and all want a piece of Diamond Hill. Kit Fan’s hard-hitting and exhilarating debut is a requiem for a disappearing city, as well as a meditation on powerlessness, religion, memory, and displacement.