You probably won’t find a better-translated Korean novel than this one, courtesy of Krys Lee:
July Literature Night: Kim Young-ha’s I Hear Your Voice
25 July, 19.00-21.00
Venue: Korean Cultural Centre UK
Entrance Free – Booking Essential. Apply to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7004 2600 with your name and contact details by Thursday 12th July.
The booking system utilises a lottery based programme that picks names at random, once the final selection has been drawn we will send you an e-mail regarding the result of the selection
About the Book
In Korea, underground motorcycle gangs attract society’s castoffs. They form groups of hundreds and speed wildly through cities at night. For Jae and Dongyu, two orphans, their motorcycles are a way of survival.
Jae is born in a bathroom stall at the Seoul Express Bus Terminal. And Dongyu is born mute–unable to communicate with anyone except Jae. Both boys grow up on the streets of Seoul among runaway teenagers, con men, prostitutes, religious fanatics, and thieves. After years navigating the streets, Jae becomes an icon for uprooted teenagers, bringing an urgent message to them and making his way to the top of the gang. Under his leadership, the group grows more aggressive and violent–and soon becomes the police’s central target.
A novel of friendship–worship and betrayal, love and loathing–and a searing portrait of what it means to come of age with nothing to call your own, I Hear Your Voice resonates with mythic power.
About the Author
Born in 1968, Kim Young-ha kicked off his writing career with his first novel “I have the right to destroy myself”, which won him the much-coveted Munhak-dongne prize in 1996. Since then, he has gained a reputation as the most talented and prolific Korean writer of his generation. Kim’s novels and stories focus on articulating a new mode of sensitivity to life’s thrills and horrors as experienced by Koreans in the ever-changing context of a modern, globalized culture. In his search for a literary style, as is often the case with internationally renowned post-modern novelists, Kim attempts to embark on exhilarating and provoking crossing of the boundaries of high and low genres of narratives.
With some 20 of his novels and stories being translated into more than 10 languages, he has begun to be recognized by critics overseas as well as in Korea as representative of a literary breakthrough that occurred in the wake of democratization and post-industrialization in Korea.