Translated by: Deborah Smith
Publisher: Open Letter, 2017.
Link to online store *
A writer struggles to come to terms with the death of her beloved mentor; the staging of an experimental play goes awry; time freezes for two lovers on a platform, waiting for the train that will take one of them away; a woman living in a foreign country discovers she has been issued the wrong ID.
Emotionally haunting and intellectually stimulating, the seven stories in North Station represent the range and power of Bae Suah’s distinctive voice and style, which delights in digressions, multiple storylines, and sudden ruptures of societal norms. Heavily influenced by the German authors she’s read and translated, Bae’s stories combine elements of Korean and European storytelling in a way that’s unforgettable and mesmerizing.
I take comfort from the fact that Bae never expected this collection to be published (at least, according to what she said at a conversation in Foyles in late 2019). I got no further than the first short story before deciding that my time was better spent elsewhere. Maybe I'll come back to it in due course.
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