Tip of the hat and waggle of the walking stick to the fearless translators at the blog subject object verb for noting that, “Two books from the Dalkey Archive Press Library of Korean Literature, Lee Ki-ho’s At Least We Can Apologize (tr. by Chris Dykas) and Jang Eun-jin’s No One writes Back (tr. by Jung Yewon), have been selected for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.”
LOL, you can tell it’s from SOV, because they name the translators, a perfectly wonderful habit I need to begin to observe. The SOV post also drops in the mysterious (to me) line, “Say what I will about the series (ahem),” which is mysterious to me because I’ve found the series (admittedly I’ve only read 8 of the 15 released so far) awesome, and these two books are, far and away, the best that were released in the first batch. For next year I’d make a strong argument for Park Min-gyu’s Pavane for a Dead Princess, but for last year, the IMPAC people got it just right.
It’s a bit post-modern, and a bit absurd, but also a fun read on at least two levels. First is the surface level, as a farcical course of events. Second is as a metaphor for the ability of power, particularly when it can instill guilt in the powerless, to control without having to use formal control, and how that, once unbalanced, can spill completely out of control.
KTLIT also reviewed Jang Eun-jin’s No One Writes Back (tr. by Jung Yewon) here, and the title (stolen entirely from London Korea Links) being ““Just read it. You won’t regret it.” Jang Eun-jin’s “No One Writes Back”. So that should sum up how we felt here at KTLIT about that.^^
Two awesome books, and it’s nice to see they are getting recognition.