A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
“Lean, relentless, and incandescent.” —Colson Whitehead
From the acclaimed author of Stories of Your Life and Others—the basis for the Academy Award –nominated film Arrival: a groundbreaking new collection of short fiction.
"THE UNIVERSE BEGAN AS AN ENORMOUS BREATH BEING HELD."
In these nine stunningly original, provocative, and poignant stories, Ted Chiang tackles some of humanity’s oldest questions along with new quandaries only he could imagine.
In “The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate,” a portal through time forces a fabric seller in ancient Baghdad to grapple with past mistakes and second chances. In “Exhalation,” an alien scientist makes a shocking discovery with ramifications that are literally universal. In “Anxiety Is the Dizziness of Freedom,” the ability to glimpse into alternate universes necessitates a radically new examination of the concepts of choice and free will.
Including stories being published for the first time as well as some of his rare and classic uncollected work, Exhalation is Ted Chiang at his best: profound, sympathetic—revelatory.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Ted Chiang’s fantastical story collection insists that while technology can’t dim the human spirit, it can certainly complicate it. Chiang—who wrote the riveting short story that inspired Hollywood’s deeply affecting Arrival—has an inquisitive, philosophical approach to science fiction that’s on full display here. In one story, corporations have designed semi-anthropomorphic electronic pets, whose owners begin to instinctively treat them like children. In another, a civilization of sentient robots recognizes that its extinction is approaching. Chiang continues to confront the fast and fluid pace of change not with fear, but with compassion and empathy.