Tag Archives: Noelle Q. De Jesus

New Releases from Asia, December 2019

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Title: Beast

Author: Krishna Udayasankar

Publisher: Penguin SEA

Year of publication: 2019

Pages: 320

Price: SGD 20.90

Links : Penguin Random House

About: When mythical creatures commit a real crime, who gets to be the judge? It was always the same dream, a dream that began with darkness and blood. When Assistant Commissioner of Police Aditi Kashyap is called upon to solve a gruesome triple homicide, she is dragged into the terrifying world of the Saimhas — werelions — who have lived alongside humans, hiding amongst them, since ancient times.

 

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Title: Boys from Good Families

Author: Usha K R

Publisher: Speaking Tiger

Year of publication: 2019

Pages: 472

Price: Rs. 599/-

Links: Speaking Tiger

 About:  Thippy, the beautiful ‘girl from the outhouse’. Ashwath, only son of a feudal family of landowners. A love that could never be blessed by Destiny.

Disillusioned by his family’s rejection of his love for Thippy, stifled by its traditions and conservative ways, Ashwath leaves Bangalore for a university town in America’s Midwest. It is 1981, and the American economy is booming. Ashwath enjoys the three C’s of success: a condominium, a car and a credit card. But a decade later, when the market crashes, he sees the other side of the American dream—joblessness, dingy one-room tenements, and loneliness.

Casting its shadow over it all is Neel Kamal, his family home in Bangalore, now a piece of prime real estate. Ashwath is compelled to return after twenty-five years to lay claim to his inheritance. He finds that he has returned to a city changed unrecognisably by new wealth, a family who are strangers to each other, and a home that is now a contested piece of real estate, valuable enough to kill for. His childhood love has been transformed into the reigning deity of a new age ashram. His attempts to meet her lead to a violent spiral of events. Read more

The Lounge Chair Interview: 10 Questions with Noelle Q. de Jesus

By Desmond Kon Zhicheng-Mingdé

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Let’s get down to brass tacks. Why do you write?

I write because it is the thing I do. And this ability, if you choose to call it that, didn’t come from anything I did, as much as it came from my life’s circumstances. My parents are each writers in their own respect —my father, a historian, a professor, and now a columnist, my mother a journalist who started a lifestyle magazine and then became a political columnist. Because of them, I grew up in a house of books, and from very early on, I was a reader, hardly unique. All of us writers are.

Throughout my life, I did try to do other things, but it would always come back to writing. If I could do it all over again, I would be a physician and specialise in women’s health but that I suppose is for another life. The conventional path of a reader in my day at least was to go into law or literature. In school, I worked in the publications. My first part-time job was as feature writer. My first full-time job was as an advertising copywriter. Even though I applied to be an account executive, they made me a writer. I’ve worked as a magazine editor, as a special projects editor, a script writer, an English instructor, and a translator from Tagalog to English. That’s how I’ve made a living all my life, and that’s not likely to change in the future.

Perhaps the better question to ask is me is why I write fiction. I write fiction because like so many writers before and after me, I’m entranced by stories. So I pursued my graduate degree in Creative Writing (at Bowling Green State University) to learn the craft of fiction. I am always curious about the workings of the human spirit, what draws men and women to act the way they do, what circumstances allow good to emerge or evil to be unleashed. I am fascinated by the human heart. What’s more, I believe that literature or more specifically, fiction, allows people to learn truths about the human condition.

There are many people who want to write, who want to be seen as a writer. That isn’t me. Right now, two years short of fifty, the way I am seen is not ever of grave concern. Being a writer has come naturally to me, and I venture to say that it has come more naturally to me than being a wife has, or being a mother. It also defines me as these two other things, as grateful as I am for them, define me. I am a woman. I am a writer. I am a wife and a mother. I am Filipino, in my heart and soul, if not on paper, but an atypical Filipino.

I do not always love writing. There are too many days when I would almost rather do anything else: play tennis, watch television or go to the movies, sing karaoke, swim, go for a walk, hang with my family. But I write, not so much out of choice as much as because it is inextricably linked to who I am and thus, involuntary.

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San Francisco: Filipina expat’s book of short stories wins raves, awards

Filipina author Noelle Q. De Jesus, author of ‘Blood: Collected Stories’, which includes a Palanca award-winning story, recently was in town for a quick trip to accompany her 18-year-old daughter, the older of her two children, to UC Berkeley. She generously carved out time from a parent’s emotional rite of passage–leaving a child to attend college away from home–to launch her collection of fictional short stories about multiculturalism, family relationships and immigrant experiences, with a reading at the at the San Francisco Main Public Library, hosted by the Philippine American Writers Association. Read more