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When her husband suddenly disappears, a young woman must uncover where he went—and who she might be without him—in this striking debut of immigration, identity, and marriage.
"What interests Ms. Chin—and what she so skillfully dramatizes—is rather the eternal conundrum of being a human among other humans…and, more specifically, of being an immigrant at the mercy of a volatile host…[Chin] expertly directs the shifting currents of emotion and of memory that sweep us along in this affecting novel." — Anna Mundow, The Wall Street Journal
“Edge Case is a beautifully subtle novel about precarity and dislocation. YZ Chin writes with wisdom, precision and humor, tracing the routes by which we become strangers to each other and ourselves.” — Katie Kitamura, author of Intimacies
“Chin writes about both the bright absurdities of modern tech-bro culture and the sharper stings of private heartache and displacement with bristling wit and vulnerability.” — Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly
“On the surface, YZ Chin’s debut novel is about a woman’s search for her missing husband, but her quest also speaks to so much else: what it means to belong to a new country and disentangle yourself from another, how relationships and memory change with time, what it means to be alone. Funny, smart and questioning, Edge Case is a glorious read.”
Tash Aw, author of We, the Survivors
“YZ Chin’s eerie and brilliant novel looks closely and tenderly at the margins of life for answers to pressing questions of love and self. Where do I belong? Who am I in the face of loss? What am I willing to do for my precarious place in this world? The result is a totally engaging and emotionally resonant story of one woman’s alienation, ambivalence, defiance, and humor in the face of turmoil—I won’t soon forget it and can’t wait to read what Chin writes next.”
Alexandra Chang, author of Days of Distraction
“Edge Case is a wry, sharply realistic portrait of a marriage in crisis; of an absurd immigration experience and scrawled social contract; of a hyper-intelligent person experimenting with her own tolerances, and her capacity to overcome loss. This is a dorky, funny, intimate, unusual novel of social realism and estrangement.”
Caoilinn Hughes, author of The Wild Laughter
“A quirky story of loss and limbo, Edge Case immerses us in the worries, hopes, and absurdities of life on a work visa in America. As a woman’s marriage disintegrates, YZ Chin examines her complicated, ambivalent quest for American citizenship and lays bare her indelible feelings of foreignness and unbelonging. This is a timely, intimate novel unlike any I've read.”
Chia-Chia Lin, author of The Unpassing
“The great tension of YZ Chin’s Edge Case is that it’s always pushing in two directions at once. It’s a domestic mystery wrapped with the international pressures of immigration. It features a narrator whose interior informs her surroundings (or worries that it’s happening the other way around). Even the engineering lingo that populates its characters everyday vocabulary reveal double meanings, in moments of irony, humor, or both. With Edge Case, Chin has written a wonderful debut that excavates how the U.S. oppresses its white-collar migrants, offering them stability that is dependent on marriage and the workplace, but rendered it in an intimate, human story that I flew through in two days.”
Kevin Nguyen, author of New Waves
"YZ Chin (author of the superb 2018 short story collection Though I Get Home) captivates in her debut novel ... Chin tells her story with dark humor, heart, and unflinching honesty (and, full disclosure, one surprisingly nauseating scene) while exploring themes of intimacy, family, race, and identity."
Arianna Rebolini, BuzzFeed
"Chin makes an impressive debut with this sharp take on faltering romance, the American dream, and self-realization...Edwina’s wry outlook and wrestling with thoughts about what it means to make it in America will resonate with readers. Those who enjoy the work of Charles Yu should take a look."
“YZ Chin’s Edge Case is one of the first great novels to examine the grinding effect of U.S. anti-immigration policies during the Trump administration…Chin, the author of the story collection Though I Get Home, is superb at describing the tumult of a woman being psychologically knocked about like a pachinko ball. Every chapter bears witness to Edwina’s pain, befuddlement and sheer exhaustion, while also revealing her snarky sense of humor, resourcefulness, tenaciousness and capacity for love. Edge Case shows what can happen to ordinary people when they’re caught up in systems beyond their control.”
Arlene McKanic, BookPage
"Chin’s novel is littered with genuinely funny moments; Edwina’s voice is a chatty, engaging one that belies her depth. ... An endearingly offbeat story with particularly timely themes."