Compared to other conflicts, the Korean War has not produced many memorable works of fiction. This novel is so brilliant it might very well say all that needs to be said, all by itself. The book’s intertwining stories of three characters—two Americans, one Korean—are so sumptuously composed, it is tempting to just be awestruck by its creative beauty. That beauty’s opposite is the defining truth of this work: the human disfigurement and the infinitely horrific toll war takes on all who experience it. While this book vividly captures the sights, sounds and feel of war, its concern is much deeper than the politics that get us into wars and the maneuvers we use to get out of them. It’s about the permanent scars of war.
Riverhead Trade, March 2011. Trade Paperback. New. Item #216113
Chang-rae Lee, the bestselling and award-winning author of Native Speaker, A Gesture Life, and Aloft returns with his most ambitious novel yet-a spellbinding story of how love and war echo through an entire lifetime. June Han was orphaned as a girl by the Korean War. Hector Brennan was a young GI who fled the petty tragedies of his small town to serve his country. When the war ended, their lives collided at a Korean orphanage, where they vied for the attention of Sylvie Tanner, a beautiful yet deeply damaged missionary. As Lee masterfully unfurls the stunning story of June, Hector, and Sylvie, he weaves a profound meditation on the nature of heroism and sacrifice, the power of love, and the possibilities for mercy, salvation, and surrendering oneself to another.