Off the Shelf

The Hong Kong International Literary Festival—that sure sounds like an oxymoron. Isn't Hong Kong the place where residents are interested exclusively in the Hang Seng Index, Rolex watches and, um, Rolex watches? Where the closest thing to a hot comic novel is Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa's latest plan to stabilize the real estate market?

Apparently not. This week, the third annual Hong Kong International Literary Festival will bring together international and Asian writers for eight days of discussions and seminars, most of which are open to the public. Yann...

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