Fish Lion“A Test of Authenticity”

Book Review – Jason Erik Lundberg (ed.), Fish Eats Lion: New Singaporean Speculative Fiction (Math Paper Press, 2012)

In the introduction to his collection of new Singaporean short speculative fiction, Jason Lundberg tells his reader that “what you hold in your hands is a compilation of the best original speculative fiction being written in Singapore today.” It is a bold claim, but one that might just be true. Lundberg continues,

Here are tales that are recognizably science fiction and fantasy, and others that blend genres and tropes, including absurdism, police procedural, fairy tales, steampunk, pre- and post-apocalypse, political satire, and first alien contact. These twenty-two stories … explore the fundamental singularity of the Lion City.

Indeed, the collection casts a wide net and in so doing boasts an impressive array of writing styles and concerns. However, I suspect that for anybody who is holding the book in their hands it is not so much the eclecticism of the collection that is of interest as it is the implicit claim that these texts are representative or indicative of a specifically Singaporean speculative fiction. Put another way, the question one asks as one turns the volume over to read on the back cover that “this book is a celebration…

[Read the full review at Cha: An Asian Literary Journal]