Waiting for Mr. Kim and Other Stories (Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction) (Paperback)
This collection of linked stories follows four generations of the Songs, a Korean American family, beginning in 1924 just prior to the Immigration Act and extending to near the end of the century. Linked stories, or stories that form a story cycle, are a common book-length form seen in Asian American literature that accommodates multiple perspectives across generations and locations. Through this story cycle, patterns emerge as cultural identity and individuality, often in tension with one another, shape choices and outcomes.With these stories, Carol Roh Spaulding charts shifting definitions of "Americanness" across time through the arc of a family narrative. She also explores desire and belonging as articulated, in turns, by the mother, father, granddaughter, great-grandson, and even a ghost child who died after a tragic accident. But these linked stories center on the life experiences of Gracie Song. They follow her from girlhood to young motherhood, through her children's teenage years, and finally to her elderly solitude, when to her great astonishment she finds romance with a younger man and reconciliation with an estranged daughter--both unexpected gifts of later life.
About the Author
CAROL ROH SPAULDING's short stories and essays have appeared in Glimmer Train, Ploughshares, Nimrod International, Mississippi Review, December magazine, and many other publications. Her forthcoming novel, Helen Button, received the 2021 Eludia Award from Hidden River Arts. She lives in Central Iowa with her family and teaches at Drake University in Des Moines.