“Fantastic and lyrical, like glimpses into the infinite potential of the universe.”
– Ken Liu, Author of The Grace of Kings and The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories
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A boy creates monsters from nanotech clay and programs them by reciting stories. A young woman finds the secret to save their doomed generation ship inside a children’s primer. Residents of Bukit Batok face a slow-motion disaster that threatens to turn them into living mathematical equations. Three Filipino siblings enter a black hole to save humanity from an enemy that uses words as weapons.
The seventeen stories in this loosely-connected collection push the limits of form and trope, from realism to genre and experimental fiction. All speak of the unease of being
between two worlds, of not quite fitting in, and also of the comfort of words and books, which illuminate our way through the darkness.
(Cover art by Sonny Liew, author & illustrator of The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye)
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“Ocampo is an exciting new voice.” – Shortlisted for the United Kingdom’s 2018 International Rubery Book Award (Fiction) for the best books by independent writers, self-published authors, and books published by independent presses.
“In his first collection of short fiction, Ocampo’s strengths are beautifully evident: an eye for the smallest of details that contribute to a powerful sense of place, an ear for dialogue that emanates from the hearts of his characters, and a passion-fueled imagination that recreates the past and constructs the future in bold and satisfying ways.”
– Dean Francis Alfar, Author of A Field Guide to the Roads of Manila and Other Stories, and founding editor of the Philippine Speculative Fiction series
“By turns funny, heartbreaking and creepy, those arresting linked stories will long linger in memory.”
– Aliette de Bodard, Author of The House of Shattered Wings and On a Red Station, Drifting
“Ocampo weaves together elements of the speculative, the metaphysical and the real in his elegant short stories to explore the past, present and potential futures of Southeast Asia. The Infinite Library and Other Stories is a fine contribution to Asian speculative fiction.”
– Zen Cho, Author of Sorcerer to the Crown and Spirits Abroad
“Victor Ocampo’s The Infinite Library is an invitation to explore an array of possibilities. These stories do not shirk away from provoking the reader and Ocampo pushes too against the boundaries as he seeks to tell his stories on his own terms. Crafted with sharp intelligence, with humor, and with love for language and for the genre, this collection is an ode not only to the author’s homeland (its history and literature), but also to the genre which he loves.”
– Rochita Loenen-Ruiz, author of The Song of the Body Cartographer
“The strength and subtlety of his voice is apparent in all of the stories which range from hard SF through steampunk to a Murakami-like surrealist bent. All are intriguing and fresh. ‘We grow tired of your monologuing’ is a line from the story ‘Infinite Degrees of Freedom’ and is appropriate here. Stop reading this and start reading the collection. You won’t be disappointed.”
– Tade Thompson, Author of Rosewater and Making Wolf
“Victor Ocampo’s Library is a repository of painful national history distilled in personal struggles, of wonder expressed through myth and magic. This collection shows what the Filipino imagination and experience can contribute to the literature of the fantastic.”
– Eliza Victoria, Author of Dwellers and Wounded Little Gods
The Infinite Library and Other Stories (1st edition Math Paper Press, 2017; 2nd edition 2020; 3rd edition Gaudy Boy, 2021)
Available from Bookshop.org and Amazon.com. In Singapore you can purchase a copy at BooksActually and Kinokuniya, or get one online at localbooks.sg. In the United States and Canada you can also get it at Barnes & Noble and other selected bookstores.