Xiaolu Guo and John Freeman - "A Lover's Discourse" - Virtual Event

Wednesday, October 21, 2020 - 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Event Presenter/Author: 
Xiaolu Guo


“Xiaolu Guo’s literary voice remains a breath of the freshest air imaginable.”—The Independent (UK) on A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers

“Gripping. . . In evocative, captivating prose that reads like fiction, Guo brings to life her lifelong struggles against the chains of poverty, gender, and censorship . . . A rich and insightful coming-of-age story of not only a woman, but of an artist and the country in which she was born.”—Kirkus Reviews on Nine Continents

Xiaolu Guo will discuss A Lover's Discourse with John Freeman. 

In partnership with the Transnational Literature Series at Brookline Booksmith.

Virtual Event


About the book: A Chinese woman moves from Beijing to London for a doctoral program—and to begin a new life—just as the Brexit campaign reaches a fever pitch. Isolated and lonely in a Britain increasingly hostile to foreigners, she meets a landscape architect and the two begin to build a life together.

A Lover's Discourse is an exploration of romantic love told through fragments of conversations between the two lovers. Playing with language and the cultural differences that her narrator encounters as she settles into life in post-Brexit vote Britain, the lovers must navigate their differences and their romance, whether on their unmoored houseboat or in a cramped and stifling apartment in east London. Suffused with a wonderful sense of humor, this intimate and tender novel asks what it means to make a home and a family in a new land.

About the author: Xiaolu Guo was born in south China and moved to London in 2002. Her novels have been shortlisted for the Women’s Prize and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize and longlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize. Her memoir, Nine Continents, was awarded the National Book Critics Circle Award in Autobiography. Her critically acclaimed films include She, a Chinese and a documentary about London, Late at Night. Based in London and Berlin, Xiaolu will be teaching in New York in fall 2020.

About the interlocutor: Moderator John Freeman was the editor of Granta until 2013. His books include The Tyranny of E-mail, Dictionary of the Undoing, and How to Read a Novelist; a trilogy of anthologies including Tales of Two Americas; and the poetry collections Maps and The Park. He is the executive editor at Literary Hub and also editor of the eponymous journal Freeman's. The next installment of Freeman's turns to one of the greatest elevating forces of life: love.


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