Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Pachinko

Min Jin Lee

A long family saga, 1910-1989, of a Korean immigrant family in Japan. The book continually dwells on the Japanese contempt for the Koreans for reasons which are, at times, unclear. Good on family dynamics with strong female characters. It seems as though every possible human tragedy is covered. An interesting historical and political read.

Extract

'You asked for news of her, and I thought it would be better for her to come here. It's very bad in Japan, but it's worse in Korea right now. When the war ends, it may get better, but it'll be worse before it stabilizes.'
'What do you mean?'
'When the Americans win, we don't know what the Japanese will do. They'll pull out of Korea, but who'll be in charge of Korea? What will happen to all those Koreans who supported the Japanese? There will be confusion. There will be more bloodshed. You don't want to be around it. You don't want you sons around it.'

Parallels
  • The Surrendered by Chang-Raelee
  • The Girl with Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee

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