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Head of Zeus
Waste Tide
Waste Tide Chen Qiufan, translated by Ken Liu

A Guardian Science Fiction Book of the Year.

Mimi is drowning in the world's trash.

She's a 'waste girl', a scavenger picking through towering heaps of hazardous electronic detritus. Along with thousands of other migrant workers, she was lured to Silicon Isle, off the southern coast of China, by the promise of steady work and a better life.

But Silicon Isle is where the rotten fruits of capitalism and consumer culture come to their toxic end. The land is hopelessly polluted, the workers utterly at the mercy of those in power. And now a storm is gathering, as ruthless local gangs skirmish for control, eco-terrorists conspire, investors hunger for profit, and a Chinese-American interpreter searches for his roots.

As these forces collide, conflict erupts – a war between rich and poor, a battle between past and future. Mimi must decide if she will remain a pawn... or change the rules of the game altogether.

'An accomplished eco-techno-thriller with heart and soul' DAVID MITCHELL.

'Waste Tide is a work of spoiled and toxic beauty ... It's more than a timely eco-thriller; it's a dark mirror held up to our selves' SIMON INGS.

Head of Zeus * Science Fiction
30 Apr 2019 * 480pp * £5.99 * 9781784977924
REVIEWS
'An accomplished eco-techno-thriller with heart and soul as well as brain. Chen Qiufan is an astute observer, both of the present world and of the future that the next generation is in danger of inheriting'
David Mitchell
'The pinnacle of near-future SF writing'
Cixin Liu
'Something startlingly new ... an action-packed story that's full of moral complexity'
Charlie Jane Anders
'A hard-hitting, uncompromising look at the near future'
Adrian Tchaikovsky
'A stunning tale of greed [that] deftly exposes all the hidden contours of the human heart'
Maggie Shen King
'A work of spoiled and toxic beauty ... It's more than a timely eco-thriller; it's a dark mirror held up to our selves'
Simon Ings
'Chinese author Chen Quifan's debut novel Waste Tide is all too true to life'
SFX
'A cracking science fiction novel by Chen Qiufan suggests humanity's future may be even stranger than its past'
New Scientist
'Chen's portrait of industry and society alike is caustically bleak – life is short and cheap – and the cultural impact of his future tech well thought through'
SFX
'A crop of younger writers are now emerging in the duo's wake [Cixin Liu and Han Song]. Waste Tide takes place on an island devoted to electronics refuse in a fictionalised South China Sea ... The setting is not too far divorced from parts of real-life China, in which the by-products of the electronics industry create uninhabitably toxic environments'
Economist
'This chilling eco-techno tale, well translated by Ken Liu, illustrates that the eternal conflict of good and evil remains alive in our "brave new world"'
The Tablet
'There's an old school cyberpunk quality to the book, a compelling reflection on a world defined by its waste'
Guardian
Author
Chen Qiufan
Chen Qiufan
Chen Qiufan is an award-winning science fiction writer. He grew up near Guiyu, China, home to the world's largest e-waste recycling centre, an area the UN called an 'environmental calamity' and his experiences there inspired The Waste Tide. He currently lives in Shanghai and Beijing and works as the founder of Thema Mundi Studio. chenqiufan.cn @ChenQiufan
Translator
Ken Liu
Ken Liu
Ken Liu is an award-winning American author of speculative fiction. His collection, The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories, has been published in more than a dozen languages. Liu's other works include The Grace of Kings, The Wall of Storms, and Star Wars tie-in The Legends of Luke Skywalker, and a second collection The Hidden Girl and Other Stories. He has been involved in multiple media adaptations of his work including the short story 'Good Hunting', adapted as an episode in Netflix's animated series Love, Death + Robots; and AMC's Pantheon, adapted from an interconnected series of short stories. 'The Hidden Girl', 'The Message', and The Grace of Kings have also been optioned for development. Liu previously worked as a software engineer, corporate lawyer, and litigation consultant. He frequently speaks at conferences and universities on topics including futurism, cryptocurrency, the mathematics of origami, and others. Liu lives with his family near Boston, Massachusetts.
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