From the Stars in the Sky to the Fish in the Sea
“This book’s themes can resonate with any child who feels excluded (or excludes others) and can also open up conversations about nonbinary gender identities. A relevant tale of love and acceptance that can find a home in any children’s collection.” – Kirkus Reviews
Featured on CTV’s The Social and in The New York Times
In the magical time between night and day, when both the sun and the moon are in the sky, a child is born in a little blue house on a hill. And Miu Lan is not just any child, but one who can change into any shape they can imagine. The only problem is they can’t decide what to be: a boy or a girl? A bird or a fish? A flower or a shooting star? At school, though, they must endure inquisitive looks and difficult questions from the other children, and have trouble finding friends who will accept them for who they are. But they find comfort in the loving arms of their mother, who always offers them the same loving refrain: “whatever you dream of / i believe you can be / from the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea.”
Order from Arsenal Pulp Press here
“An exquisitely rendered picture book about gender and identity . .. The illustrations, by Wai-Yant Li and Kai Yun Ching, are saturated with colour and sparkling with invention, and Thom’s gentle, rhythmic text resonates like a wise old fairy tale that has been told and retold, and like the mother’s song, passed down from one generation to the next.” – Quill and Quire (STARRED REVIEW)
Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl’s Confabulous Memoir
“With Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars, you really get the sense of creativity and invention that comes from becoming your own woman – an artist of your own identity […] This is writing at its best. Enjoy being touched by the sparkle, warmth, community, violence and fierceness of the world Kai Cheng Thom has created.” – Emma Watson
Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl’s Confabulous Memoir is the highly sensational, ultra-exciting, sort-of true coming-of-age story of a young Asian trans girl, pathological liar, and kung-fu expert who runs away from her parents’ abusive home in a rainy city called Gloom. Striking off on her own, she finds her true family in a group of larger-than-life trans femmes who live in a mysterious pleasure district known only as the Street of Miracles. Under the wings of this fierce and fabulous flock, the protagonist blossoms into the woman she has always dreamed of being, with a little help from the unscrupulous Doctor Crocodile. When one of their number is brutally murdered, she joins her sisters in forming a vigilante gang to fight back against the transphobes, violent johns, and cops that stalk the Street of Miracles. But when things go terribly wrong, she must find the truth within herself in order to stop the violence and discover what it really means to grow up and find your family
Order from Metonymy Press here.
“Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars by Kai Cheng Thom […] It effortlessly changes the rules, cracking open a space of freedom, the kind of freedom that can only come from entering a game already in play and breaking each played-out rule with greater and more playful impunity. A dark fairy tale told by a “notorious liar.” – Montreal Review of Books
a place called No Homeland
“This is a slim book of poetry that will wreck you in only the most glorious ways.” – Teen Vogue
This extraordinary poetry collection is a vivid, beautifully wrought journey to the place where forgotten ancestors live and monstrous women roam―and where the distinctions between body, land, and language are lost. In these fierce yet tender narrative poems, Kai Cheng Thom draws equally from memory and mythology to create new maps of gender, race, sexuality, and violence. In the world of a place called No Homeland, the bodies of the marginalized―queer and transgender communities, survivors of abuse and assault, and children of diaspora―are celebrated, survival songs are sung, and the ancestors offer you forgiveness for not remembering their names.
Descended from the traditions of oral storytelling, spoken word, and queer punk poetry, Kai Cheng Thom’s debut collection is evocative and unforgettable.
Order from Arsenal Pulp Press here
From the book:
“I dream warm, wet
That rise and tremble and swell with the moon
To give birth to babies connected
By blue-river veins of memory”
and coming in fall 2019…
I HOPE WE CHOOSE LOVE: A Trans Girl’s Notes From the End of the World
“This enlightened essay collection is both an invocation of and invitation to love—with intention—as a way to repair, rebuild and reimagine new worlds. I hope readers will choose to take up Kai Cheng Thom’s fiery call to arms.” – Vivek Shraya
What can we hope for at the end of the world? What can we trust in when community has broken our hearts? What would it mean to pursue justice without violence? How can we love in the absence of faith?
In a heartbreaking yet hopeful collection of personal essays and prose poems, blending the confessional, political, and literary, acclaimed poet and essayist Kai Cheng Thom dives deep into the questions that haunt social movements today. With the author’s characteristic eloquence and honesty, I Hope We Choose Love proposes heartfelt solutions on the topics of violence, complicity, family, vengeance, and forgiveness. Taking its cues from contemporary thought leaders in the transformative justice movement such as adrienne maree brown and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, this provocative book is a call for nuance in a time of political polarization, for healing in a time of justice, and for love in an apocalypse.
Pre-order from Arsenal Pulp Press here