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Y/N: A Novel

Y/N: A Novel

"A listless young woman becomes obsessed with a K-Pop star and uproots her life to find him on the other side of the world. I expected this to be a light, breezy read about fandom and young love; instead, it’s a cerebral meditation on artistry, individuation, and the nature of modern obsession. Through these two characters, Esther Yi explores the role that fans play in creating the stars they worship, even sublimating their own identities to their devotion. An academic treatise on this subject would be interesting enough, but Yi also happens to be a sharp and witty storyteller. As soon as the book begins, it’s clear that Y/N is itself a work of art, and every word is chosen with careful deliberation."

Melissa S.

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Author Esther Yi
Publisher Astra House
Publication Date 2024-03-26
Section New Titles - Paperback / Fiction / All Staff Suggestions / Fiction Suggestions / Melissa S.
Type New
Format Paperback
ISBN 9781662602740

“Wondrous and weird" —The New York Times
"Gorgeous." —The New Yorker
"Utterly brilliant." —Cosmopolitan
"Riveting and innovative." —TIME

Now in paperback, Esther Yi's critically acclaimed novel about a woman whose obsession with a K-pop idol sends her to Seoul on a journey of literary self-destruction.

It’s as if her life only began once Moon appeared in it. The desultory copywriting work, the boyfriend, and the want of anything not-Moon quickly fall away when she beholds the idol in concert, where Moon dances as if his movements are creating their own gravitational field; on live streams, as fans from around the world comment in dozens of languages; even on skin-care products endorsed by the wildly popular Korean boyband, of which Moon is the youngest, most luminous member. Seized by ineffable desire, our unnamed narrator begins writing Y/N fanfic—in which you, the reader, insert [Your/Name] and play out an intimate relationship with the unattainable star.

From a conspicuous new talent comes Y/N, a provocative literary debut about the universal longing for transcendence and the tragic struggle to assert one’s singular story amidst the amnesiac effects of globalization. Crackling with the intellectual sensitivity of Elif Batuman and the sinewy absurdism of Thomas Pynchon, Esther Yi’s prose unsettles the boundary between high and mass art, exploding our expectations of a novel about “identity” and offering in its place a sui generis picture of the loneliness that afflicts modern life.

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