When Fox Is a Thousand

When Fox is a Thousand is a lyrical, magical novel, rich with poetry and folklore and elements of the fairytale. Larissa Lai interweaves three narrative voices and their attendant cultures: an elusive fox growing toward wisdom and her 1000 birthday, the ninth-century Taoist poet/nun Yu Hsuan-Chi (a real person executed in China for murder), and the oddly named Artemis, a young Asian-American woman living in contemporary Vancouver.

With beautiful and enchanting prose, and a sure narrative hand, Lai combines Chinese mythology, the sexual politics of medieval China, and modern-day Vancouver to masterfully revise the myth of the Fox (a figure who can inhibit women’s bodies in order to cause mischief). Her potent imagination and considerable verbal skill result in a tale that continues to haunt long after the story is told.

First published to wide acclaim in 1995 and out of print since 2001, this new edition of When Fox is a Thousand, published by Arsenal Pulp Press for the first time, features a new foreword by the author.

Praise for When Fox is a Thousand:

“A sure-footed writer and teller of tales, Lai takes the reader on a magnificent journey through layers of time, myth, and imagery.”—Susan Crean

“A particularly acute pleasure.”—The Advocate

Larissa Lai was born in La Jolla, California and lives in Calgary where she is completing a Ph.D. in English at the University of Calgary. She was awarded an Astraea Foundation Emerging Writers Award in 1995. She is also the author of the novel Salt Fish Girl (2002).