Hide Sora notification

Try Sora - the student reading app, by OverDrive

Apple App Store
Google Play Store
  Main Nav
The Woo-Woo
Cover of The Woo-Woo
The Woo-Woo
How I Survived Ice Hockey, Drug Raids, Demons, and My Crazy Chinese Family
Borrow Borrow
In this jaw-dropping, darkly comedic memoir, a young woman comes of age in a dysfunctional Asian family whose members blamed their woes on ghosts and demons when in fact they should have been on...
In this jaw-dropping, darkly comedic memoir, a young woman comes of age in a dysfunctional Asian family whose members blamed their woes on ghosts and demons when in fact they should have been on...
Available Formats-
  • OverDrive Read
  • EPUB eBook
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1

Recommended for you

 

Description-

  • In this jaw-dropping, darkly comedic memoir, a young woman comes of age in a dysfunctional Asian family whose members blamed their woes on ghosts and demons when in fact they should have been on anti-psychotic meds.

    Lindsay Wong grew up with a paranoid schizophrenic grandmother and a mother who was deeply afraid of the "woo-woo"—Chinese ghosts who come to visit in times of personal turmoil. From a young age, she witnessed the woo-woo's sinister effects; at the age of six, she found herself living in the food court of her suburban mall, which her mother saw as a safe haven because they could hide there from dead people, and on a camping trip, her mother tried to light Lindsay's foot on fire to rid her of the woo-woo.

    The eccentricities take a dark turn, however, when her aunt, suffering from a psychotic breakdown, holds the city of Vancouver hostage for eight hours when she threatens to jump off a bridge. And when Lindsay herself starts to experience symptoms of the woo-woo herself, she wonders whether she will suffer the same fate as her family.

    On one hand a witty and touching memoir about the Asian immigrant experience, and on the other a harrowing and honest depiction of the vagaries of mental illness, The Woo-Woo is a gut-wrenching and beguiling manual for surviving family, and oneself.

Excerpts-

  • From the book Prologue: Brain Child
    "Miss Wong, you are seriously ill," the neurologist in a midtown office said, preparing to offer me a sympathy tissue, but I was dry-eyed and benignly frosty, my way of responding to shitty news. It wasn't like me to fake a lady-like smile or even to cry.
    "The visual disturbances aren't going away," he continued, as if he were delivering a lecture in one of my writing workshops at Columbia University. "Migraine-related vestibulopathy isn't like having a cold. Objects and people are going to float around you. You're going to see bright auras. You're going to feel like you're moving when no one else is. This means that you could have vertigo for the rest of your life. You might have to spend many more months in bed. I don't even know if you'll get your ability to read back. You might not be able to finish school. What this means, is that you have to start thinking about your future."
    There was a dramatic, intentional pause — the kind that customer service and people speaking at funerals like to use.
    "Have you thought about who will look after you? Do you have any family that you can go to?"
    I was twenty-two years old and had been on my own in New York City for four months, a good two thousand miles away from my crazy Chinese family, who were still exorcising fake demons — The Woo-Woo — they called them, from anyone whose opinion they flagrantly disliked. That had included me, and it looked like The Woo-Woo had caught me anyway.
    This was normal in our family, who believed that mental illness or any psychological disturbance was caused by demonic possession. The Woo-Woo ghosts were sometimes responsible for cancers, unexplainable viruses, and various skin afflictions like mild cirrhosis.
    Growing up, my superstitious mother always believed that going to the bathroom alone could lead to possession, whereas my father said any emotional weakness would bring on symptoms not unlike those dramatically thwarted in The Exorcist film. "Lindsay, you cry and your eyeball will fall off," he would explain seriously, while clutching his head like he was having a moderate-sized seizure. "Ghost use any opportunity to possess you, okay? Don't be weak or it's game over for you." According to the neurologist, I had an extraordinary disease with no cure and a mysterious source. My brain was one hell of a light-headed mess. Electrical nerves had somehow gotten tangled and unplugged from their loose sockets. The feral wiring had somehow gotten wet and the damage had zapped the pupils and left me scrambling to understand why everyone and everything was jumping and leaping in polar directions; why the sky sometimes swapped with the versatile ground; why I had fallen face-down in his office when he asked me to walk in a straight line.
    My vestibular case (MAV-Migraine Associated Vertigo) was particularly rare (unlike anything the doctor had ever treated), and he seemed impressed by how severe my symptoms were, and was very excited to investigate my monstrous head. In Canada, I had not been able to get off the waiting list to see a decent neurologist, but in New York City, you could book one on a Sunday afternoon in less than 48 hours — a mind-shocking luxury of American healthcare, which I was so happy to have as a student.
    The neurologist thought I'd be particularly thrilled to know that a famous pop star, Janet Jackson, shared this exclusive brain disorder with me. How nice to know that I was officially un-Woo, I thought, although he was diagnosing me with a lifelong disorder which left me paralyzed in bed and frequently unable to read or write. I had a disease that gave me strange visual hallucinations...

Reviews-

  • Alexander Chee, author of How To Write an Autobiographical Novel "Lindsay Wong's The Woo-Woo is a brave, funny, and heartbreaking memoir that takes on the mysticism so regularly sold to us as part of the Asian American experience, and presents a side we don't often see: that of a young woman struggling to survive her family's adherence to a belief system she knows will doom her and them both."
  • Lily Brooks-Dalton, author of Motorcycles I've Loved and Good Morning, Midnight "The Woo-Woo will break your heart then bind it back together. With luxurious prose, dark humor, and a sharp yet tender gaze, Lindsay Wong gives us an unforgettable memoir that mines the truth of her explosive family and its everlasting ripples as they follow her into adulthood."
  • Elizabeth Greenwood, author of Playing Dead: A Journey Through The World Of Death Fraud "How anyone survives childhood is a mystery, but how Lindsay Wong endured hers is a revelation. Extraordinary in their cruelty and blacker-than-midnight hilarity, Wong's family in The Woo-Woo is unforgettable. Equal parts appalling and riveting, Wong proves that a sense of humor can get you through the most dire circumstances. A riveting, unbelievable family epic told in exquisite, visceral prose, you won't believe it's not fiction."
  • Sarah Perry, author of After the Eclipse: A Mother's Murder, A Daughter's Search "That Lindsay Wong is even alive to write this book is amazing. That she can make it into the hilarious, touching, and tragic story that she's given us here is proof that books still have a purpose. Her black humor combines with compassion: she represents the realities of mental illness in her family while still telling us the story from their perspective: that of people haunted by The Woo-Woo. After you read this book, you may be, too -- in the best way."
  • Sean Madigan Hoen, author of Songs Only You Know: A Memoir "Here's a memoir so alive and full of 'you can't make this stuff up' that you'll find yourself wincing and snickering and possibly weeping long after reading the last eloquent sentence. The Woo-Woo is both heart-wrenching and batshit insane, and is also beautifully rendered and fearless in its whip-smart humor. Lindsay Wong spares nothing, not even herself, in her search for clarity amidst madness, while the specificity of her prose reminds us of the woo-woo lurking within every family tree."

Title Information+

  • Publisher
    Arsenal Pulp Press
  • OverDrive Read
    Release date:
  • EPUB eBook
    Release date:

Digital Rights Information+

  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

You've reached your checkout limit.

Visit your Checkouts page to manage your titles.

Close

You already have this title checked out.

Want to go to your Checkouts?

Close

Recommendation Limit Reached.

You have reached the maximum number of titles you are allowed to recommend at this time. You can recommend up to 3 titles every 30 days.

Close

Sign in to recommend this title.

Recommend this title for your digital library.

Close

Enhanced Details:

Close
Close

Limited availability

Availability can change throughout the month based on the library's budget.

is available for days.

Once playback starts, you have hours to view the title.

Close

Permissions

Close

There are no copies of this issue left to borrow. Please try to borrow this title again when a new issue is released.

Close

The OverDrive Read format of this eBook has professional narration that plays while you read in your browser. Learn more here.

Close

Holds

Total holds:


Close

Restricted

Some format options have been disabled. You may see additional download options outside of this network.

Close

You've reached your library's checkout limit for digital titles.

To make room for more checkouts, you may be able to return titles from your Checkouts page.

Close

Excessive Checkout Limit Reached.

There have been too many titles checked out and returned by your account within a short period of time.

Try again in several days. If you are still not able to check out titles after 7 days, please contact Support.

Close

You have already checked out this title. To access it, return to your Checkouts page.

Close

This title is not available for your card type. If you think this is an error contact support.

Close

An unexpected error has occurred.

If this problem persists, please contact support.

Close

Close

NOTE: Barnes and Noble® may change this list of devices at any time.

Close
Recommend this title for your digital library
The Woo-Woo
The Woo-Woo
How I Survived Ice Hockey, Drug Raids, Demons, and My Crazy Chinese Family
Lindsay Wong
Optional:
Close
Buy it now
and support our digital library!
The Woo-Woo
The Woo-Woo
How I Survived Ice Hockey, Drug Raids, Demons, and My Crazy Chinese Family
Lindsay Wong
A portion of your purchase goes to support your digital library.
Close
Barnes & Noble Sign In |   Sign In

The first time you select “Send to NOOK,” you will be taken to a Barnes & Noble page to sign into (or create) your NOOK account. You should only have to sign into your NOOK account once to link it to your library account. After this one-time step, periodicals will be automatically sent to your NOOK account when you select "Send to NOOK."

You can read periodicals on any NOOK tablet or in the free NOOK reading app for iOS, Android or Windows 8.

Accept to ContinueCancel

Sora Turbo
Get the app!
Apple App Store
Google Play Store
Brought to you by Halton District School Board, and built with 💕 by OverDrive.
Close

Renewing this title won't extend your lending period. Instead, it will let you borrow the title again immediately after your first lending period expires.

Close

You can't renew this title because there are holds on it. However, you can join the holds list and be notified when it becomes available for you to borrow again.

Close