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From author and filmmaker Sandi Tan, director of the acclaimed documentary Shirkers, comes a novel about a neighborhood of immigrants, seekers, lovers, and lurkers.
In a suburban LA neighborhood, neighbors keep wary distance and at times collide, propelled by desire, fury, and mischief. Precocious Korean American sisters Mira and Rosemary find their world rocked by a suicide; a charismatic and creepy drama teacher grooms his students; an aging gay horror novelist fights loneliness; and a white mother and her adopted Vietnamese daughter deal with lifelong anger issues. Spanning decades, and bringing together a diverse and interlocking group of stories, Lurkers is a Los Angeles masterpiece, showing Sandi Tan’s fiction to be as formidable and exciting as her filmmaking.
About the Author
Sandi Tan was born in Singapore and has an MFA in screenwriting from Columbia University. She directed the 2018 Netflix film Shirkers, which won a Directing Award at the Sundance Film Festival, was named Best Documentary of 2018 by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, and was shortlisted for the 2019 Oscar for Best Documentary. The Black Isle was her debut novel. She will be directing her film adaptation of Elif Batuman’s novel The Idiot. She lives in Los Angeles.
Praise for Lurkers “How is Lurkers simultaneously hilarious and horrifying? I’ll tell you how: PURE GENIUS. Sandi Tan populates Santa Claus Lane, her leafy corner of suburban LA, with such viscerally original characters that I found myself laughing at their outrageousness while nodding at their familiar humanity. Every page of this wildly original book is a surprise and a delight.” —Kevin Kwan, bestselling author of Crazy Rich Asians
“Sandi Tan’s Lurkers is an acid-etched American Beauty for our current moment. But rather than suburban white male dread, Lurkers excavates the deeper mysteries and dark humor of female desire and a cultural and existential desperation so heavy it takes both tragedy and catastrophe to root it loose. A sneaky marvel of a novel and not to be missed.” —Megan Abbott, bestselling author of Give Me Your Hand
“Lurkers is a heartbreaking delight. The intricately woven stories and characters here are funny and horrifying, weird and wise. I tore through this novel—Tan is a visionary with an imagination I would follow anywhere.” —Kate Elizabeth Russell, author of My Dark Vanessa
“A magisterial triumph from the inimitable Sandi Tan, Lurkers is brimming with sinister pathos and dead-on, laugh-out-loud observations.” —Elif Batuman, author of The Idiot
"I loved Shirkers and I now love Lurkers . . . Briskly entertaining and genuinely funny, there's something funny or weird or crushing on practically every page.” —Ed Park, author of Personal Days
“Lurkers is a remarkable book. It's funny, sad, vicious, generous, at times genuinely scary, at times absolutely heartbreaking—often, all on the same page. Sandi Tan somehow manages to perfectly capture the twisted, infuriating, beautiful soul of Southern California in the mid-aughts with all its seemingly irreconcilable contradictions . . . The fictional inhabitants of Santa Claus Lane are so well wrought that you find yourself convinced that if you just drove around long enough, you might find them hanging around in a living room or a liquor store just outside of LA.” —Justin Kuritzkes, author of Famous People
Praise for The Black Isle
“The Black Isle is an elegant, disturbing and satisfying read, both epic and intimate.” —Los Angeles Times
“Beautifully written, with a storyline that spans 70 years, The Black Isle is a historical novel that is both breathtaking and haunting.” —The Philadelphia Inquirer
“Mesmerizing . . . A gripping historical novel . . . Tan’s imagination seems boundless.” ―Publishers Weekly, Pick of the Week
“A young woman grows old with the twentieth century, haunting her own life as history conspires to render her a secret. Sweeping in scope, impressively imagined, ruthlessly readable.” ―Steve Erickson, author of These Dreams of You