Ongpin Stories By R. Kwan Laurel
R. Kwan Laurel takes us to the Chinese-Filipino enclave that is Binondo to wander into the Chinaman's mishmash of merchandise--race, class, and the search for belonging.
Digging our chopsticks into these eight stories, we examine a teenage boy raised in a strict Chinese household struggling to pas his Mandarin lessons; a radical teacher whose pure motives yield to miscalculated actions; a policeman and his insane friend's search for gold; a mathematical genius who dreams of leaving for Hong Kong; a Filipino sales clerk and his forbidden fondness for the eldest daughter of a Chinese businessman; a grandmother fighting an illness neither traditional medicine nor modern science can cure; a father's struggle to preserve his family's small business.
Brilliantly observed, these stories of people finding their place in a new world while struggling to hold back the seeping influences of their adpted country linger long after we've savored the feast that is Ongpin.
Paperback, 104 pages
Trim size: 5" x 8", 175 grams