The story is about an Asian woman’s rebellion to white supremacy, but, at the same time, it tackles the inferiority complex experienced by all the first-generation immigrants who are trying to make it in this white-dominated society. Mayu Komori represents non-native speakers who are pursuing their dreams in America. Burdened with cultural differences and language proficiency, they often fail to convey their brilliant ideas. They’re often put down, brushed off, and smeared at because they’re different. They are also often too intimidated to stand up for themselves because speaking up is almost like challenging the dominance of the native speakers; but in fact, they’re just people who are playing against the home advantage of native speakers and trying to accomplish their dreams. This story is about rights, equality, and identity. I believe it also echoes to some current issues in the US; for instance, Trump administration uses pandemic as an excuse to expel migrants and foreign (especially Chinese). Posing a very unique predicament for all English-as-a-second language speakers, I believe this story has some unique values to be shared with the world.
Mayu Komori, a first-generation immigrant Japanese American, wants to become a writer. But brilliant as her story is, she finds that her friend and proofreader, Callie Davidson, has a better chance at making it as a writer than she does for possessing no more than native-level English proficiency. Frustrated, Mayu isolates herself and dedicate all her time into the writing contest she had entered, only to find that her crush, Andrew Helmer, another white boy, has fallen for Callie, just because they have much more in common. Angered and lost all hope, Mayu dedicates everything to writing, including her health, until one night she passes out due to overdose.
When Mayu wakes up, she finds herself in a whole different dimension where verything is turned up-side-down. Her real, inferior self is replaced by Yuma Hiki, the beautiful and powerful woman who can manipulate shadows, whom Mayu had created in her novel Kill Me if You Can. In this world, she, Yuma, owns the company Mayu works in, decides if Callie’s novel gets to be published, and has Andrew flung at her feet. However, as much as Mayu enjoys Yuma’s life, she feels Yuma’s personality lurking in the back of her bone, trying to take back control. Mayu has to flee from Yuma’s supernatural murder attempt. But meanwhile, Callie begins to notice Mayu’s secret. In order to keep what she has, Mayu has to decide on what to do with Yuma and Callie—to reconcile, or to kill.
Written by Xintong Han (USA)