A young woman falls in love with a biohacked model, a woman with gadgets implanted in various parts of her body. A mother searches for her missing daughter by taking on a hitchhiker in the hopes of finding a restaurant rumored to be a destination for runaways. A man suddenly starts dreaming the dreams of his girlfriend, but is she dreaming his? After a pandemic wipes out modern civilization, a group of survivors must decide whether to merge with the Mother Earthlings, a clan determined to repopulate the Earth.
A book for lovers of Doris Lessing and Emily St. John Mandel, Tessa Yang’s The Runaway Restaurant marks the arrival of a wry and haunting new voice in speculative literary fiction.
“…a promising speculative collection…Yang thoughtfully explores her characters’ needs and emotions, and she effectively conceives surprising and uncomfortable circumstances—up to and including an apocalyptic pandemic in “Your Anger Is a Tiny Bird”—to interrogate the strength of human relationships. Readers will be delighted by Yang’s creative examination of her characters’ psyches.”
— Publishers Weekly
“…well-written, and diverse… The collection evokes a sense of mystery…as if the
stories continue, just not for the readers.”
“Dream-drenched and sinuous, the stories in Tessa Yang’s The Runaway Restaurant sing with the weird magic of being alive. Yang conveys both humor and heartache with equal grace-and every glimmering gem of a story reveals another avenue we might take to find ourselves, our shared humanity. This collection is an absolute delight.”
— Allegra Hyde, author of Eleutheria
“Reading The Runaway Restaurant is like sifting through a series of exquisite dreams-these stories are shimmering, inventive, and beautifully layered. Tessa Yang is a bold and gifted writer, and this is a stunning debut.”
— Kimberly King Parsons, author of Black Light
“Through cybernetic implants, weather-bending superpowers, and a world-ending plague, Yang deftly illuminates the contours of fractured childhoods, of human alienation and desire. Yang’s voice is so assured and compelling that, while reading The Runaway Restaurant, I had the rare experience of not wondering if the next story would be good, but assuming it would be. I make the same assumption of her future books. This is a writer to watch.”
— Kim Fu, author of Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century
“In The Runaway Restaurant, Tessa Yang writes stories so nimble and sharp you don’t notice how deeply they’ve buried their claws until the last page. Mothers and daughters hurt and love each other in equal measure, teenagers fiercely seek love and freedom, and a world of the marvelous and strange feels, briefly, so very real. A delight of a book, I couldn’t stop after just one story, I wanted to keep living in Yang’s complex and deeply felt worlds.”
— Gwen E. Kirby, author of Shit Cassandra Saw
“Witches, dragons that tell you your flaws, lost princesses, pandemic apocalypses, biohacking, ghosts, and more! Tessa Yang delights with whimsy and bravery, her magical conceits probing the human heart’s quest for love, laying bare how we fumble desperately toward each other.”
— Brenda Peynado, author of The Rock Eaters