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{ "item_title" : "Ghost Music", "item_author" : [" An Yu "], "item_description" : "From the author of the original and electric Braised Pork ( Time ), An Yu's enchanting and contemplative novel of music and mushrooms follows a former concert pianist searching for the truth about a vanished musician For three years, Song Yan has filled the emptiness of her Beijing apartment with the tentative notes of her young piano students. She gave up on her own career as a concert pianist many years ago, but her husband Bowen, an executive at a car company, has long rebuffed her pleas to have a child. He resists even when his mother arrives from the southwestern Chinese region of Yunnan and begins her own campaign for a grandchild. As tension in the household rises, it becomes harder for Song Yan to keep her usual placid demeanor, especially since she is troubled by dreams of a doorless room she can't escape, populated only by a strange orange mushroom. When a parcel of mushrooms native to her mother-in-law's province is delivered seemingly by mistake, Song Yan sees an opportunity to bond with her, and as the packages continue to arrive every week, the women stir-fry and grill the mushrooms, adding them to soups and noodles. When a letter arrives in the mail from the sender of the mushrooms, Song Yan's world begins to tilt further into the surreal. Summoned to an uncanny, seemingly ageless house hidden in a hutong that sits in the middle of the congested city, she finds Bai Yu, a once world-famous pianist who disappeared ten years ago. A gorgeous and atmospheric novel of art and expression, grief and survival, memory and self-discovery, Ghost Music animates contemporary Beijing through the eyes of a lonely yet hopeful young woman and gives vivid color and texture to the promise of new beginnings.", "item_img_path" : "https://covers2.booksamillion.com/covers/bam/0/80/215/962/0802159621_b.jpg", "price_data" : { "retail_price" : "26.00", "online_price" : "26.00", "our_price" : "26.00", "club_price" : "26.00", "savings_pct" : "0", "savings_amt" : "0.00", "club_savings_pct" : "0", "club_savings_amt" : "0.00", "discount_pct" : "10", "store_price" : "" } }
Ghost Music|An Yu
Ghost Music
by An Yu
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Overview

From the author of the "original and electric" Braised Pork ( Time ), An Yu's enchanting and contemplative novel of music and mushrooms follows a former concert pianist searching for the truth about a vanished musician For three years, Song Yan has filled the emptiness of her Beijing apartment with the tentative notes of her young piano students. She gave up on her own career as a concert pianist many years ago, but her husband Bowen, an executive at a car company, has long rebuffed her pleas to have a child. He resists even when his mother arrives from the southwestern Chinese region of Yunnan and begins her own campaign for a grandchild. As tension in the household rises, it becomes harder for Song Yan to keep her usual placid demeanor, especially since she is troubled by dreams of a doorless room she can't escape, populated only by a strange orange mushroom. When a parcel of mushrooms native to her mother-in-law's province is delivered seemingly by mistake, Song Yan sees an opportunity to bond with her, and as the packages continue to arrive every week, the women stir-fry and grill the mushrooms, adding them to soups and noodles. When a letter arrives in the mail from the sender of the mushrooms, Song Yan's world begins to tilt further into the surreal. Summoned to an uncanny, seemingly ageless house hidden in a hutong that sits in the middle of the congested city, she finds Bai Yu, a once world-famous pianist who disappeared ten years ago. A gorgeous and atmospheric novel of art and expression, grief and survival, memory and self-discovery, Ghost Music animates contemporary Beijing through the eyes of a lonely yet hopeful young woman and gives vivid color and texture to the promise of new beginnings.

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802159625
  • ISBN-10: 0802159621
  • Publisher: Grove Press
  • Publish Date: January 2023
  • Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.75 pounds
  • Page Count: 240

Related Categories

“Solitude is tolerable, even enjoyable at times. But when you realise that you’ve given your life to someone, yet you know nothing but his name? That kind of solitude is loneliness. That’s what kills you.”

In An Yu’s ethereal Ghost Music, a woman’s grip on her suffocating life loosens as she is drawn into a surreal world of secrets and ghostly experiences where her deep yearnings can finally resurface and transform her.

Thirty-year-old Song Yan has devoted the past three years to her husband, Bowen. She has also made room in her life for his disgruntled mother, who is recently widowed and now lives with them in their Beijing apartment. Although Song Yan traded her career as a concert pianist to be a dutiful wife, Bowen is more interested in his job as a BMW executive than in having children.

The disquiet between Song Yan and her mother-in-law is temporarily quelled by the mysterious weekly delivery of prized mushrooms, which the women cook together. However, Song Yan becomes increasingly frustrated with and disconnected from Bowen after she learns some information about his past. She turns her attention toward investigating who sent the mushrooms, which leads her down the proverbial rabbit hole to Bai Yu, a famous pianist who vanished a decade earlier. In the process, Song Yan rediscovers an aspect of herself that was also on the verge of disappearing.

Ghost Music, like Yu’s first novel, Braised Pork, is beautifully metaphoric and insightful. Song Yan’s first-person narrative reveals the full richness of her mind and senses, which have been stifled by her fear of shame and the disregard of her husband and mother-in-law. Throughout this haunting social commentary, Yu’s lyrical language and atmospheric descriptions bring out the contrast between Song Yan’s oppressive, superficial reality and the hypnotic world where she converses with fungi. Fans of literary novels with a supernatural edge, such as Jamie Ford’s The Many Daughters of Afong Moy, take note.

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