City Literature: LARB Blog

It’s my bi-weekly piece in the Los Angeles Review of Books Korea Blog. This week the article is BRIGHT LIES,

Big City, Big Angst

Big City, Big Angst!

BIG CITY: KOREAN AUTHORS AND SEOUL. Below you will find additional information on the books/stories I mentioned on the LARB Blog

.Here’s an excerpt and below that the information on all the works mentioned in the piece.


The Korean relationship with big cities, particularly Seoul, mixes love with a strong undercurrent of hate. The love of Seoul is often clear: when I first got a job in Korea, which was in Daejeon, I called my best friend, who is Korean. Happy to hear that I got a job, he told the news to his wife, also Korean. “Where is the job?” he then asked. Woosong University in Daejeon, I replied, which he also dutifully relayed to his wife. In the background I could hear a small commotion, which was shortly interrupted by my best friend’s wife grabbing the phone from his hands and loudly yelling into it, “Why didn’t you get a job in Seoul? You won’t understand Korea unless you live in Seoul!”
To read more you must click here^^


Works discussed on LARB blog (with links to reviews on KTLit on the title, links to Amazon at the bottom of each entry).

The Soil, Yi Kwang-Su
Paperback: 512 pages
Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press (November 16, 2013)
ISBN-13: 978-1564789112
Available on Amazon

A Day in the Life of Kubo the Novelist, Park Taewon
In On the Eve of the Uprising and Other Stories from Colonial Korea
Paperback: 284 pages
Publisher: Cornell East Asia Series; Hardcover edition (May 15, 2010)
ISBN-13: 978-1933947495
Available on Amazon

Seoul: 1964, Winter, Sung-ok Kim
In Modern Korean Fiction An Anthology
Paperback: 408 pages
Publisher: Columbia University Press (August 3, 2005)
ISBN-13: 978-0231135139
Available on Amazon
Online as a PDF from the Korea Journal
OR (if you are rich) on Amazon (Don’t do it!^^)
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The Dwarf
, Cho Se-hui
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press (September 29, 2006)
ISBN-13: 978-0824831011
Available on Amazon (Kindle also)

A Distant and Beautiful PlaceYang Kwi-ja
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press (December 1, 2002)
ISBN-13: 978-0824826390
Available on Amazon

Please Look After Mom, Shin-Kyoung Sook
Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (April 3, 2012)
ISBN-13: 978-0307739513
Available on Amazon (Kindle also)

Kong’s Garden (Bilingual), Hwang Jung-Eun
Paperback: 116 pages
Publisher: Asia Publishers (2015)
ISBN-13: 979-1156621164
Available on Amazon

Homecoming (Bilingual), Cheon Myeong-kwan
Paperback: 116 pages
Publisher: Asia Publishers (2015)
ISBN-13: 979-1156621188