A nuanced, complex, and highly original novel.’ Charles Yu, National Book Awardwinning author of Interior Chinatown
A fresh, unique work of metafiction that follows a graphic novelist who loses control of his own narrative when he attempts to write the story of his fraught upbringing in 1980s Chinatown.
In a Chinatown housing project lives twelve-year-old Benny, his ailing grandmother, and his strange neighbor Constantine, a man who believes he’s a reincarnated medieval samurai. When his grandmother is hospitalized, Benny manages to survive on his own until a social worker comes snooping. With no other family, he is reluctantly taken in by Constantine and soon, an unlikely bond forms between the two.
At least, that’s what Yu, the narrator of the story, wants to write.
The creator of a bestselling comic book, Yu is struggling with continuing the poignant tale of Benny and can’t help but interject from the present day, slowly revealing a darker backstory.
Can Yu confront the demons he’s spent his adult life avoiding or risk his own life…and Benny’s?
‘Instructive as it is inspiring, The Double Life of Benson Yu is a phenomenal example of a writer taking real risks in order to reveal and reckon with deep-rooted, tormenting truths as a means of moving forward. Kevin Chong has crafted a novel that will get your heart pumping, mind jumping, and, best of all, fingers turning’ (Mateo Askaripour, New York Times bestselling author).