At the age of 21, Chloe Gong published her first young adult novel, These Violent Delights on November 17, 2020. The novel, which she started at 18 just after her first year at the University of Pennsylvania. She would then go on to becoming a best-selling author, with plans for more books. One is the sequel to These Violent Delights called Our Violent Ends, which came out on November 16, 2021. Another is a spin-off young adult series of the same universe called Foul Lady Fortune, coming Fall 2022. She also has plans for her debut adult fantasy called Immortal Longings, which is a retelling of Anthony and Cleopatra.
Chloe Gong has achieved high awards for her work at such a young age. This blog will take a look at her writing journey, analyzing her growth as an author.
Chloe Gong was born in Shanghai, but when she was two, she moved to New Zealand with her family. She started writing books when she was thirteen years old, producing nine books until she released her debut novel at 21.
She came to the United States for college, double majoring in English and International Relations at the University of Pennsylvania. She write her debut novel in May 2018, the year after her freshman year at school. She would then publish it as These Violent Delights under Simon & Schuster. She currently resides in New York, where she works as a full-time writer.
Outside of writing, she is an avid Swiftie and has a huge platform on TikTok, under the username @thechloegong.
As previously mentioned, Chlor Gong started writing as a hobby at a young age. She mentioned Wattpad being a huge conductor of her writing. In a Buzzfeed interview, when asked about her writing experience as a teen, she answered “It got harder as I aged up, because back when I was 13, writing was a fun little hobby that I did when I had finished all my homework, and I didn’t think of it as anything except an enjoyment to kill time”.
When These Violent Delights was picked up by the publisher, she was still in the process of obtaining her undergraduate degree. Balancing school and writing were a challenge, which she wrote:
“There were times where I needed to be strict with myself: I often couldn’t treat a Friday/the weekends like a regular college student because I would be on deadline, and I knew I needed to sit at my desk to make progress. Or if I had an assignment and a manuscript draft due on the same day, I would be planning my schedule months in advance instead of a few days before because otherwise I wouldn’t be able to stay on top of it.”Buzzfeed
However, despite all the troubles, it was worth it when she released her novel, These Violent Delights. These Violent Delights is a Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet re-telling but set in 1920’s Shanghai with rivaling gangs. Juliette Cai is the daughter of the crime lord controlling The Scarlet Gang, while Roma Montagov is the son of the crime lord in charge of the White Flowers. The book follows the two as they must deal with the magical monster wreaking havoc in Shanghai while resisting the pull they feel towards one another. These Violent Delights peaked at number three on the young adult hardcover books in the NYT Best Sellers list, spending 27 weeks on the rank.
Her sequel, Our Violent Ends, released November 16, 2021, follows the betrayal that took place in the second book. It is set after the attack of the dangerous monster, as Shanghai is rebuilding from the damage. This book peaked at number one on the young adult hardcover books, spending two weeks on the chart.
She also planned a spin-off duology series, set in the same universe as These Violent Delights. The first book is titled Foul Lady Fortune and will follow a familiar character in the years after the events of the first series. This is slated to release in Fall 2022.
Chloe Gong plans to make an adult debut with a fantasy trilogy called Flesh and False Gods. The first book is titled Immortal Longings and is inspired by Shakespeare’s Antony & Cleopatra and the Kowloon Walled City. This is planned to release in 2023.
Title:These Violent Delights The year is 1926, and Shanghai hums to the tune of debauchery. A blood feud between two gangs runs the streets red, leaving the city helpless in the grip of chaos. At the heart of it all is eighteen-year-old Juliette Cai, a former flapper who has returned to assume her role as the proud heir of the Scarlet Gang—a network of criminals far above the law. Their only rivals in power are the White Flowers, who have fought the Scarlets for generations. And behind every move is their heir, Roma Montagov, Juliette’s first love… and first betrayal. But when gangsters on both sides show signs of instability culminating in clawing their own throats out, the people start to whisper. Of a contagion, a madness. Of a monster in the shadows. As the deaths stack up, Juliette and Roma must set their guns—and grudges—aside and work together, for if they can’t stop this mayhem, then there will be no city left for either to rule.
Title: Our Violent Ends The year is 1927, and Shanghai teeters on the edge of revolution. After sacrificing her relationship with Roma to protect him from the blood feud, Juliette has been a girl on a mission. One wrong move, and her cousin will step in to usurp her place as the Scarlet Gang’s heir. The only way to save the boy she loves from the wrath of the Scarlets is to have him want her dead for murdering his best friend in cold blood. If Juliette were actually guilty of the crime Roma believes she committed, his rejection might sting less. Roma is still reeling from Marshall’s death, and his cousin Benedikt will barely speak to him. Roma knows it’s his fault for letting the ruthless Juliette back into his life, and he’s determined to set things right—even if that means killing the girl he hates and loves with equal measure. Then a new monstrous danger emerges in the city, and though secrets keep them apart, Juliette must secure Roma’s cooperation if they are to end this threat once and for all. Shanghai is already at a boiling point: The Nationalists are marching in, whispers of civil war brew louder every day, and gangster rule faces complete annihilation. Roma and Juliette must put aside their differences to combat monsters and politics, but they aren’t prepared for the biggest threat of all: protecting their hearts from each other.
Title: Foul Lady Fortune The first of the two books, is a speculative historical neoir surrounding the events of Imperial Japan's expansion into CHina in the 1930s. A familiar character is recruited as a national spy, maintaining her false identity by posing as a young married couple with someone who might be the very enemy.
Title: Immortal Longings Set in the dense, ruthless twin cities of San-Er, which recall the historic Kowloon Walled City of 1990s Hong Kong, Immortal Longings follows Calla Tuoleimi, a former princess who wants to remove her uncle, the king, from his throne. Certain individuals in San-Er possess the ability to take over others’ bodies, which is on full display at a deadly city-wide competition each year. Calla joins the games to take vengeance on her uncle, who only ever appears to congratulate the winner—and makes precarious alliances with both her cousin, August, and her fiercest competitor, exiled aristocrat Anton Makusa. But Calla is running from a dark past, and only one of them can walk out of the games alive.
Chloe Gong is an accomplished writer at the age of 22. She started her writing career at the young age of thirteen, where she wrote for fun. Many readers have enjoyed books as they have amassed a large fanbase only a few years after release.
She inspires readers to keep fantasizing and writers to keep trying to tell their stories. When asked what advice she would give to writers, she stated:
“To keep writing! There’s only working and working on your craft until it’s at a level that you can convey your stories and ideas and thoughts with, and then whether the next step is traditional publishing or non-traditional publishing, the world is truly your oyster.”Buzzfeed
This concludes my author highlights of Chloe Gong. Chloe has been one of my favorite authors to read, so this blog felt appropriate to write. I want to continue exploring and researching more authors, so expect more blogs like this. If you want to keep talking about Chloe and any other authors, please comment below! As always, thank you for your time!