Synopses & Reviews
The award-winning author of The Leavers offers a visionary novel of friendship, art, and ambition that asks: What is the value of a meaningful life?
In the early 1980s, Giselle Chin, Jackie Ong, and Ellen Ng are three teenagers drawn together by their shared sense of alienation and desire for something different. "Allied in the weirdest parts of themselves," they envision each other as artistic collaborators and embark on a future defined by freedom and creativity.
By the time they are adults, their dreams are murkier. As a performance artist, Giselle must navigate an elite social world she never conceived of. As a coder thrilled by the internet's early egalitarian promise, Jackie must contend with its more sinister shift toward monetization and surveillance. And as a community activist, Ellen confronts the increasing gentrification and policing overwhelming her New York City neighborhood. Over time their friendship matures and changes, their definitions of success become complicated, and their sense of what matters evolves.
Moving from the predigital 1980s to the art and tech subcultures of the 1990s to a strikingly imagined portrait of the 2040s, Memory Piece is an innovative and audacious story of three lifelong friends as they strive to build satisfying lives in a world that turns out to be radically different from the one they were promised.
"Remarkable...vividly captures the urgency of youth, and becomes a heartbreaking elegy for a communal, almost utopian approach to urban life." — Rumaan Alam, National Book Award finalist for Leave the World Behind
"Evocative and luminous. Ko once again introduces us to people we want to know deeply, then as always, delivers that and beyond. A glorious writer." — Jacqueline Woodson, National Book Award winning author of Red at the Bone
"Ko spans past, present, and future with the astute story of three Chinese American women from the New York City tristate area over the course of their lives...A worthy follow-up to Ko's striking debut." — Publishers Weekly
About the Author
Lisa Ko is the author of the nationally bestselling novel The Leavers, which was a finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction and the PEN/Hemingway Award, and winner of the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction. Ko's short fiction has appeared in The Best American Short Stories and her essays and nonfiction have been published in The New York Times and The Believer.