The Book of Beijing: A City in Short Fiction

Capturing the essence of a city in a variety of short stories can be challenging but the newly-released The Book of Beijing does exactly that.

This anthology contains ten, condensed stories that showcase the essence of both historic and contemporary Beijing by established and emerging Beijing authors, writing across a variety of genres.

The Book of Beijing is the second book of the China Cities series following the successful release of The Book of Shanghai in 2020.

An example of some of the stories include:

A counterfeiter, forever living outside the law, starts to envy a friend who’s managed to get out of the game and establish a normal life.

Two former college friends run into each other on the morning train and find themselves reflecting on the very different paths their lives have taken.

A security officer in a futuristic version of Beijing West Railway Station chases down a passenger who the screens say is ’intentionally lost’.

It turns close friends into strangers, upends carefully thought-out life choices, and leaves next-door neighbours completely unaware of each other’s true identity. The stories collected in this anthology show people in all contexts - from wannabe protestors to future users of facial expression reading technology; desperate to stake their name on the city.

The China Cities series was initiated by the Confucius Institute at the University of Manchester and published by Comma Press as part of its acclaimed ’Reading the City’ series. Two of the writers Ms Gu Shi and Ms Wen Zhen will read their stories at the Manchester Literature Festival on 15 October at International Burgess Foundation.

The Book of Beijing is now published and available from Amazon , Comma Press and all reputable bookstores.