“With subtle intelligence and wry humor, Kathryn Ma brings us characters whose
lives are complicated—in all the best ways—by family, race, immigration, and quirks
of personality. These wonderful stories have the resonance of truth even as they make
you see the world in new ways.”
– Curtis Sittenfeld, author, American Wife
Barbara’s mother needs a new kidney, and Lawrence is the best match.
“No, no,” says her mother. “One of the girls will be fine.”
“It’s okay, Ma,” says Lawrence. Barbara sees him reach for something small at the
top of Ma’s shelf, so she knows it’s costing him to sound enthusiastic. It’s an old
family habit, lying while turning away. “I’ve got two, way more than I need.
You take one. I want you to have it.”
Ma nods but doesn’t answer, another deft deception, the yes that’s really a no.
Ma has no intention of letting him give her a kidney. She’s already made that
perfectly clear to Barbara. She’s got four daughters but only one Lawrence.
She wants the girls to draw straws from the second-best broom in the house.