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Book Review: Long for This World
Summary from GoodReads:
Sonya Chung's astonishing first novel tells the story of a family divided between contemporary America and a small Korean town. Long for This World is about loss and renewal and what it means to go home.
In 1953, on a remote island in South Korea, a young boy stows away on the ferry that is carrying his older brother and sister-in-law to the mainland. Fifty-two years later, Han Hyun-kyu is on a plane back to Korea, leaving behind his wife and grown children in America. It is his daughter, Jane -- a war photographer recently injured in a bombing in Baghdad and forced to return to New York -- who journeys to find him in the South Korean town where his brothers have settled. Here, father and daughter take refuge from their demons, unearth passions, and, in the wake of tragedy, each discover something deeper and more enduring than they'd imagined possible.
Long for This World is a pointillist triumph -- depicting whole worlds through the details of a carefully prepared meal or a dark childhood memory. But Chung is also working on a massive scale, effortlessly moving between domestic intimacies and the global stage -- Iraq, Paris, Darfur, Syria -- to illuminate the relationship between troubled world affairs and personal devastation. The result is a profound portrayal of the human experience -- both large and small. Long for This World establishes Sonya Chung as a thrilling new voice in fiction.
My Review: In this book we meet the Han family. Jane is a photojournalist & war correspondent and happens to be the narrator for this book. To me, this was a very interesting approach for a narrator and it really works well. Jane also happens to be the daughter if immigrants, though she was born in the US.
Some of the Han family have come to America while others remain in Korea.
This book covers so much more than just one subject. It shows us how the things surrounding us form the path and outcome to our lives. There's the issues of being an immigrant, friendship, family, love and the differences of various types of relationships.
There are difficult characters, understanding characters, driven characters and characters who just want to stop the world and have a look at the path of their lives to be certain they're on the path they want to be.
Long for this World has wonderful character development and a really great story. It flows so well and keeps moving throughout with no *dead* spots. This is a great read to pick up on one of those nights that you're especially in a family type mood.
Review copy of this book provided by the author/publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. In no way did the provision of the book affect the outcome of my review.