Fresh Voices Above the Noisy Din

New works by four Chinese-American writers splendidly illustrate the frustrations, humor and eternal wonder of the immigrant's life

After receiving his first stack of rejection slips in the mid-1970s, David Wong Louie made a painful change in the short stories he sent out: he stripped them of all traces of ethnic identity. "What I'd do is write in the first person about somebody like myself, but I wouldn't identify him as Chinese American," he says. "I was trying to satisfy my paranoia about what people wanted to read or what editors thought people wanted to read. And I didn't see anything out there to tell me differently."

There wasn't much out there to see. Until the 1976 success of...

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