Eastern Heathens: An Anthology of Subverted Asian Folklore

Out of stock

 We love Asian folklore. We grew up listening to Chinese legends, Arab fairy tales, Malay ghost stories and Indian sacred epics, and their fabulous images have continued to inhabit our imaginations ever since.

Yet as grown-ups, we’ve sometimes been bugged by the moralistic, simplistic manner in which these fables are often told. What better way to negotiate this than to reinvent our heritage? This collection brings together 14 subversions, reinventions and adaptations of folktales from all across Asia, written by an international crew of authors.

Within these pages, you’ll find a Cambodian horror story, a poetic meditation on Japanese fox spirits, a crime parable based on the Indian epic of the Ramayana, a sci-fi redaction of the Chinese legend of Lady White Snake, and many more exquisite gems.

This book is a treasure trove of the imagination, containing tales both intelligent and wondrous, combining the best elements of Asian heritage with the wit of the 21st century.

View sample pages




Eastern Heathens: An Anthology of Subverted Asian Folklore

Slide to see



$23.00 SGD

Out of stock

Receive an email when it’s back in stock.

Alert Me


"Eastern Heathens's place in the larger segment of subversive narratives and, ultimately, its place within the larger scope of Singapore literature, is an important one, and apposite praise must be accorded to both Lee-Koe and Ng Yi-Sheng for taking on the task of putting together this collection. The stories have been well-selected, based on the range of influences and the themes covered as a whole." ⁠—Laremy Lee, Quarterly Literary Review Singapore

“The stories in Eastern Heathens work to expose the extent to which our present values, mores and attitudes remain consistent (or part ways) with those found in the original folktales – a valuable exercise in an era in which national myths are embraced, adored and passed on, but rarely questioned.” ⁠—Roderick B. Overaa, Assistant Professor from the English Department at East Tennessee State University, USA, Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language & Literature


Amanda Lee Koe, Ng Yi-Sheng


Anila Angin, Chan Ziqian, Bryan Cheong, Jennani Durai, Jeannine Hall Gailey, Jon Gresham, Abha Iyengar, Amanda Lee Koe, Li Huijia, Jason Erik Lundberg, Hoa Pham, Zeny May Dy Recidoro, Alfian Sa’at, Cyril Wong