Carrying on with my phase of East Asian literature, I recently read the South Korean/Japanese saga Pachinko by Min Jin Lee.
It’s the story of multiple generations of a South Korean family living in Japan. Sunja moves from South Korea when she is a young woman, unexpectedly pregnant by a married yakuza, and very much clouded in shame. A Christian minister stays at her parent’s guesthouse, and offers to marry her and move to Japan with him, where he is to preach his faith.
This is the start of a new life for Sunja, and a new life for her future child. It won’t be an easy ride for a South Korean family in Japan in the midst and aftermath of WW1. Pachinko gives voice to the immigrant outsiders, and as the Guardian puts it, ‘is a rich tribute to a people that history seems intent on erasing’. If you read and enjoyed the wonderful ‘Do Not Say We Have Nothing’, I think you’d like this too. It’s the sort of book in which you learn about modern history through the emotive family saga.
Highly recommended (and thanks to all you bookstagrammers who recommended it to me!) #Pachinko #MinJinLee