In brief: Lemon; The Nutmeg’s Curse; Dirt – reviewsEnglish(English) Article
The Guardian / September 26, 2021
Kwon Yeo-Sun brings eerie beauty to crime fiction, Amitav Ghosh traces the climate crisis to colonialism and Bill Buford goes to the heart of French cuisine Lemon Kwon Yeo-Sun (translated by Janet Hong) Apollo, £12.99, pp192 Seoul 2002 and a city that’s been gripped by World Cup fever is about to be consumed by an infinitely darker news story: the murder of 18-year-old Kim Hae-on, whose ethereal good looks lead to the case being dubbed “the high school beauty murder”. Nobody is ever charged and 17 years on it still consumes her younger sister, Da-on, whose entire self – dumpy and plain but whip-smart and brimming with life – has altered in response. Though the narrative takes the form of a detective novel, it becomes a meditation on envy, grief and, this being South Korea, plastic surgery. Understated yet lingeringly eerie.
20 New Works of Fiction to Read This SeasonEnglish(English) Article
The New York Times / September 21, 2021
New novels from Jonathan Franzen and Anthony Doerr, a political thriller by Hillary Clinton and Louise Penny, a Korean murder mystery — and more.
A Murder Mystery That Refuses to Be SolvedEnglish(English) Article
Vulture / October 28, 2021
Read the first chapter of Kwon Yeo-Sun’s slim novel Lemon and you could easily mistake it for a thriller. The book, translated from Korean by Janet Hong, has all the elements of the genre: protagonists haunted by an unsolved murder, a cop more interested in making an arrest than finding the killer, a dead girl whose beauty has turned her into something approaching myth. But this is a murder mystery less interested in victim and killer than in the motivations of those consuming their story—those who create meaning where, most likely, none exists. That consumption is its own violence. Gradually, we managed to return to our rightful place, our emotions numbed by the strain and struggle of our looming college entrance exam. We told ourselves: Some of us had to go, that’s all. One had an accident, one went abroad, one transferred schools, one dropped out, but we’re still here, aren’t we? Ah, this is killing us. Nothing’s changed. What kind of life is this? Is this living?
What Fran’s Reading: Two compelling novels about sibling loyaltyEnglish(English) Article
Jersey's Best / October 27, 2021
One of the exciting things about our increasingly smaller world is the surfacing of authors whose work is known, even award-winning, in their countries, yet new to American readers. Korean author Kwon Yeo-sun’s new novel, “Lemon” (Other Press, 160 pp., $20), is a case in point. Yeo-sun’s novels and short stories have won literary awards in her country, but this is her first novel to be published in English. But I suspect we’ll be encountering more of her writing.
8 Must-Read New Books Out This WeekEnglish(English) Article
Bustle / October 26, 2021
A Virgin Homicide as Told by the Girls She Left BehindEnglish(English) Article
The New York Times / October 25, 2021
The best recent crime and thrillers – review roundupEnglish(English) Article
The Guardian / October 15, 2021
This 28th and, sadly, final Inspector Montalbano novel was written in 2005 and kept in a safe until the author’s death in 2019. It’s set, as usual, in the fictional Sicilian town of Vigata, where the humane and witty detective, grown ever more weary and cynical, is joined, for the first time, by the author himself. Equally tired and tetchy, the fictional Camilleri repeatedly chides Montalbano for his lack of progress investigating the death of the titular Riccardino, a man with a colourful private life who has been gunned down in the street by an unknown killer on a motorbike.
For your weekend book browsing: A (hefty) list of the most anticipated titles of the seasonEnglish(English) Article
Daily Press / October 08, 2021
Summer reading may snag all the headlines, but fall is a wonderful time to be a reader. We have rounded up 57 books to watch for, from novels and story collections to books on the most pressing issues of our time. Biographies of Oscar Wilde, Pablo Picasso and Stephen Crane elucidate some of our greatest artists and thinkers, and memoirs from Stanley Tucci, Katie Couric and others offer a look behind their public personas. No matter what you are searching for this fall, you can find it in the pages of a book. (Titles without a publication date noted are on sale now.) — JOUMANA KHATIB
LITERARY FICTIONEnglish(English) Article
Daily Mail Online / October 07, 2021
BURNTCOAT by Sarah Hall (Faber £12.99, 240 pp) Sarah Hall has described the compulsion she felt to write at the start of the pandemic, and the pain of 2020 is wrought into this novel’s fabric. It’s also made manifest in the form of artist Edith and her monumental sculptures, which involve wood that has, paradoxically and suggestively, first been burnt. Edith is now in her 50s, and about to deliver her last commission — we know that she is entering her final days. But as the novel slides fluidly between timeframes, we also learn how, some decades before, Edith’s relationship with a chef, Halit, was forged in a period of lockdown, when the country was swept by a devastating disease.
Kwon Yeo-sun’s Lemon: Not Your Average ThrillerEnglish(English) Article
Cultured Vultures / October 06, 2021
Lemon is author Kwon Yeo-sun’s English language debut novella, a book described in the marketing as a literary thriller, and categorised as such in most of the places it can be pre-ordered from. But in her native South Korea, Yeo-sun has a reputation for writing unconventional stories, playing with form and, therefore, being known as an author who is sometimes difficult to read.
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