Beautifully written with a great sense of character. A lingering sense of melancholy permeates each of these individual and immersive short stories. Te-Ping Chen's Land of Big Numbers is heartbreaking and insightful. A journey into day-to-day lives that are teetering on the edge of doom. It is an incredible collection.
Most stories have a Black Mirror feel to them, with authoritarianism and heads-down citizens at the forefront. Some stories carry an impending sense of danger, like Hotline Girl, with the reader always left to wonder what will happen next. Chen is a master of filling pages with suspense without relying on gimmicks. I appreciate the multitude of personal perspectives presented, too.
There are themes of stagnation despite constant movement, attempting to fit in, and the ever-relatable pursuit of self-improvement, no matter what. I cannot recommend it enough.