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Publisher's Summary

A young translator living in Toronto frequently travels abroad - to Hong Kong, Macau, Prague, Tokyo - often with his unnamed lover. In restaurants and hotel rooms, the couple begin telling folk tales to each other, perhaps as a way to fill the undefined space between them. Theirs is a comic and enigmatic relationship in which emotions are often muted and sometimes masked by verbal play and philosophical questions, and further complicated by the woman’s frequent unexplained disappearances.

You Are Eating an Orange. You Are Naked. is an intimate novel of memory and longing that challenges Western tropes and Orientalism. Embracing the playful surrealism of Haruki Murakami and the atmospheric narratives of filmmaker Wong Kar-wai, Sheung-King’s debut is at once lyrical and punctuated, and wholly unique, and marks the arrival of a bold new voice in Canadian literature.

©2020 Sheung-King (P)2021 Book*hug

What the critics say

“Sheung-King has written a wonderfully unexpected and maverick love story but also a novel of ideas that hopscotches between Toronto, Macau, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Prague. It is enchanting, funny, and a joy to read.” (Kyo Maclear, author of Birds Art Life)

“A tale that oozes the horror and confusion of love, while staying somehow still desperately romantic. It gives the cold shoulder to the dominant gaze and its demands to control the Asian body, carving out a thrilling space beyond whiteness. I didn’t want it to end.” (Thea Lim, author of An Ocean of Minutes, finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize)

“This is a conversational novel, yet Sheung-King is equally interested in all the places language can’t reach. Through his precise prose, he conjures the inarticulable emotions of longing and heartbreak. If you have ever been young and in love, this book will transport you there again.” (Vancouver Sun)

What listeners say about You Are Eating an Orange. You Are Naked.

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Horrible Dribble

You are Eating an Orange. You are Naked by Sheung-King
Is esoteric dribble.

It’s honestly insufferable to get through. It’s pretentious, misogynistic, with what seems like niche commentary but it really just piggy banking off of other pieces of art, movies, novels, philosophy.

The little traditional stories the narrator tells to his girlfriend are interesting. The commentary that comes from both of them is ridiculous. Based in Canada was nice to hear shout outs.

I question if you are meant to like the characters. I don’t know if you need to like the characters in the book, but it certainly makes it harder to get through the book when you are constantly thinking, “fuck stop being pathetic” “why are you so intimidated by everyone”.

The girlfriend is certainly a flaw character but given that the narrator is her ex boyfriend; who is still in love of her and is also regretful of so many of his action because he was like a lost puppy around her trying to please her, it comes off as misogynistic.

A strong, confident, sexual, educated woman of course paired with someone so collapsible is in a doomed relationship. Of course the narrator wants it to look like her fault. LiTERAL EYE ROLL!!

This is the type of book that rather than taking time to explain, use metaphors, similes etc anything to flesh the narrative out, it simply say, “like in that scene in that movie/book/article/banksy” CONSTANTLY.

This book is for anyone that wants a short read of something inconsequential, but trying to have gravitas.

I read it only because it was on CBC Books and the title made me laugh.