UPDATE: THIS EVENT IS NOW SOLD OUT. YOU CAN ADD YOUR NAME TO THE WAIT LIST BELOW AND WE WILL BE IN TOUCH IF ANY SPOTS OPEN UP.
Porter Square Books is delighted to present RF Kuang, best-selling author of Babel, for an event live and in-person at the Brattle Theatre! This event will take place on Sunday, November 12 at 12pm. The author will be joined in conversation by TBD, and the talk will be followed by a book signing in which you can get your copy of Babel personalized and up to one other book signed. Please note that all attendees will be required to wear masks at this event!
Each ticket to this event includes one pre-signed paperback copy of Babel and entrance for one to the event. Purchase your ticket below!
Instant #1 New York Times Bestseller from the author of The Poppy War
“Absolutely phenomenal. One of the most brilliant, razor-sharp books I've had the pleasure of reading that isn't just an alternative fantastical history, but an interrogative one; one that grabs colonial history and the Industrial Revolution, turns it over, and shakes it out.” -- Shannon Chakraborty, bestselling author of The City of Brass
From award-winning author R. F. Kuang comes Babel, a thematic response to The Secret History and a tonal retort to Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell that grapples with student revolutions, colonial resistance, and the use of language and translation as the dominating tool of the British empire.
Traduttore, traditore: An act of translation is always an act of betrayal.
1828. Robin Swift, orphaned by cholera in Canton, is brought to London by the mysterious Professor Lovell. There, he trains for years in Latin, Ancient Greek, and Chinese, all in preparation for the day he’ll enroll in Oxford University’s prestigious Royal Institute of Translation—also known as Babel.
Babel is the world's center for translation and, more importantly, magic. Silver working—the art of manifesting the meaning lost in translation using enchanted silver bars—has made the British unparalleled in power, as its knowledge serves the Empire’s quest for colonization.
For Robin, Oxford is a utopia dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge. But knowledge obeys power, and as a Chinese boy raised in Britain, Robin realizes serving Babel means betraying his motherland. As his studies progress, Robin finds himself caught between Babel and the shadowy Hermes Society, an organization dedicated to stopping imperial expansion. When Britain pursues an unjust war with China over silver and opium, Robin must decide…
Can powerful institutions be changed from within, or does revolution always require violence?
Rebecca F. Kuang is the #1 New York Times and #1 Sunday Times bestselling author of the Poppy War trilogy, Babel: An Arcane History, and Yellowface. Her work has won the Nebula, Locus, Crawford, and British Book Awards. A Marshall Scholar, she has an MPhil in Chinese Studies from Cambridge and an MSc in Contemporary Chinese Studies from Oxford. She is now pursuing a PhD in East Asian Languages and Literatures at Yale, where she studies diaspora, contemporary Sinophone literature, and Asian American literature.
AUBE REY LESCURE is a French-Chinese-American writer who grew up between Shanghai, northern China, and the south of France. After receiving her B.A. from Yale University, she worked in foreign policy and has co-authored and translated two books on Chinese politics and economics. She was the 2019 Ivan Gold Fellow at the Writers’ Room of Boston, a Pauline Scheer Fellow at GrubStreet, a finalist for the 2018 Boston Public Library Writer-in-Residence program, and an artist-in-residence at the Studios of Key West and Willapa Bay AiR. Her fiction and creative nonfiction have appeared in Guernica, Best American Essays, The Florida Review online, WBUR, and more. Her debut novel, River East, River West will publish on January 9th, 2024.
We are now at capacity for this event! Fill out this form to add your name to the wait list, and we'll be in touch if any spots open up.