18 September 2008

NEW BOOK - Ouyang Yu - The Kingsbury Tales: A Novel (Brandl and Schlesinger)

The Kingsbury Tales: a Novel A collection of poetry by Ouyang Yu 80 pages pb - $24.95 – ISBN 978-1-876040-82-6

In this book of poetry, Kingsbury is where the poet has been based since he came from the People’s Republic of China in 1991, the first time he came into extensive contact, and conflict with a very different culture and multi-culture.

Covering a period of about 160 years from the First Opium War (1840) to the beginnings of the 21st century, THE KINGSBURY TALES serves up a poetic plate of multi-taste choice foods with choice tales, each tale represented by a poem, not longer than one A-4 page, told by people from all walks of life, including wives, concubines, lawyers, diplomats, students, professors, factory workers, mental patients and visitors, from a colonial and postcolonial point of view.

The book explores and depicts poetic characters in a similar way that Geoffrey Chaucer did many hundreds years ago in The Canterbury Tales. The stories in THE KINGSBURY TALES are also arranged in sections, such as ‘Historical Tales’, ‘Women’s Tales’, ‘Men’s Tales’, ‘Professors’ Tales’, and ‘The Empire Tales’. Some of the poems have already been published in literary journals such as Eureka Street, Griffith Review, Cordite, Westerly, Island, Antipodes and Southerly.

“Ouyang Yu’s poetry—acerbic, funny, wickedly political—is unremittingly concerned with the strangeness, multiplicity and horror of the real. The Kingsbury Tales is a major new work that shows Yu’s brilliance and range. The tales make up a rich and sprawling account of the complex interactions between China and Australia, between selves and the world. Filled with stories from history, memory and everyday conversation, The Kingsbury Tales is both a profoundly shocking and deeply entertaining work of poetry.” David McCooey
Ouyang Yu graduated from La Trobe University with a doctoral degree in Australian literature and has had 43 Chinese and English books published in the field of fiction poetry, literary translation and literary criticism since his arrival in Australia in 1991. His first novel in English, The Eastern Slope Chronicle (Brandl & Schlesinger, Sydney 2002) was shortlisted for the 2003 NSW Premier’s Awards and won the SA Festival Award for Innovation in Writing in 2004. His fifth book of English poetry, Foreign Matter (Otherland Publishing, Melbourne, 2003) won the 2003 Fast Books Prize for Best Poetry in the self-published category in NSW.

His other published translations (18 of them) in Chinese include The Female Eunuch (1991; 2001) and The Whole Woman (2002) by Germaine Greer, The Shock of the New by Robert Hughes (2002) and Capricornia by Xavier Herbert (2004).

Ouyang Yu has been invited to a number of literary festivals, including the Melbourne Writers’ Festival, Sydney Writers Festival, Hong Kong International Writers’ Festival, the International Chinese Poetry Festival in Denmark and the Singapore Writers’ Festival.

For an autographed copy, please contact Ouyang Yu at P. O. Box 200, Kingsbury 3083, VIC, Australia or email: youyang2@bigpond.com

$24.95/copy plus $3.00 postage/handling for Victoria and $3.50 for interstate and $5.50 for overseas.