Explaining the difference between speculative fiction and science fiction can feel like sorting out overlapping nebulae. The main distinction of speculative fiction may be that a story is just barely possible, at a slight remove from reality that veers into the playfully weird. A Japanese author exemplifying this style is Yukiko Motoya, who writes of flying umbrellas and dressing rooms that swallow up shoppers.

That We May Live: Speculative Chinese Fiction, by Dorothy Tse, Zhu Hui, et al.160 pagesTWO LINES PRESS

To introduce more translated fiction in this genre, the San Francisco-based publisher Two Lines Press has released “That We May Live,” a collection of seven contemporary tales from writers based in Hong Kong and China, themed loosely around urban alienation.