London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

Beasts of a Little Land [forthcoming]

It is 1917, and Korea is yet to be divided into north and south. With the threat of famine looming, a young girl named Jade is sold by her family to Miss Silver’s courtesan school in cosmopolitan Pyongyang, an act of desperation that will cement her place in the lowest social status. But the city’s … [Read More]

The Red Palace [forthcoming]

To enter the palace means to walk a path stained in blood… Joseon (Korea), 1758. There are few options available to illegitimate daughters in the capital city, but through hard work and study, eighteen-year-old Hyeon has earned a position as a palace nurse. All she wants is to keep her head down, do a good job, … [Read More]

The Forest of Stolen Girls

Suspenseful and richly atmospheric, June Hur’s The Forest of Stolen Girls is a haunting historical mystery sure to keep readers guessing until the last page. 1426, Joseon (Korea). Hwani’s family has never been the same since she and her younger sister went missing and were later found unconscious in the forest near a gruesome crime scene. Years later, … [Read More]

K-Pop Confidential

From the publisher’s website: A Korean-American girl travels to Seoul in hopes of debuting in a girl group at the same K-pop company behind the most popular boy band on the planet, in this romantic coming-of-age novel perfect for K-pop fans everywhere! Candace Park knows a lot about playing a role. For most of her … [Read More]

If I Had Your Face

From the publisher’s website: A riveting debut novel set in contemporary Seoul, Korea, about four young women making their way in a world defined by impossible standards of beauty, after-hours room salons catering to wealthy men, ruthless social hierarchies, and K-pop mania “Powerful and provocative … a novel about female strength, spirit, resilience—and the solace … [Read More]

Straight White Men / Untitled Feminist Show

“Young Jean Lee’s Untitled Feminist Show is one of the more moving and imagina­tive works I have ever seen on the American stage…what makes it so transcendent is its delicious ability to alternate the pain of being different with a sense of humor about lives not lived among the status quo.” —Hilton Als, New Yorker … [Read More]

The Silence of Bones

June Hur’s elegant and haunting debut The Silence of Bones is a bloody YA historical mystery tale perfect for fans of Kerri Maniscalco and Renée Ahdieh. I have a mouth, but I mustn’t speak; Ears, but I mustn’t hear; Eyes, but I mustn’t see. 1800, Joseon (Korea). Homesick and orphaned sixteen-year-old Seol is living out the ancient … [Read More]

East Goes West

From the publisher’s website: Foreword by Alexander Chee | Afterword by Sunyoung Lee | Notes by Sunyoung Lee Having fled Japanese-occupied Korea for the gleaming promise of the United States with nothing but four dollars and a suitcase full of Shakespeare to his name, the young, idealistic Chungpa Han arrives in a New York teeming … [Read More]

The Island of Sea Women

Mi-ja and Young-sook, two girls living on the Korean island of Jeju, are best friends that come from very different backgrounds. When they are old enough, they begin working in the sea with their village’s all-female diving collective, led by Young-sook’s mother. As the girls take up their positions as baby divers, they know they are beginning a … [Read More]

White Chrysanthemum

Publisher description: ‘Look for your sister after each dive. Never forget. If you see her, you are safe.’ Hana and her little sister Emi are part of an island community of haenyo, women who make their living from diving deep into the sea off the southernmost tip of Korea. One day Hana sees a Japanese soldier … [Read More]

Pachinko

Publisher description: Yeongdo, Korea 1911. In a small fishing village on the banks of the East Sea, a club-footed, cleft-lipped man marries a fifteen-year-old girl. The couple have one child, their beloved daughter Sunja. When Sunja falls pregnant by a married yakuza, the family face ruin. But then Isak, a Christian minister, offers her a … [Read More]

How I became a North Korean

From the publisher’s website: Yongju is an accomplished student from one of North Korea’s most prominent families. Jangmi, on the other hand, has had to fend for herself since childhood, most recently by smuggling goods across the border. Danny is a Chinese-American teenager of Korean descent whose parents left China when he was nine; his … [Read More]

Funereal

From the publisher’s website: Soobin Shin is an aspiring young woman in a near-future version of Seoul. Ever since her college graduation, she has struggled to escape from her dead-end job in a doughnut chain. Her twin sister Hyewon is one of Korea’s most recognizable models, but Soobin just can’t seem to find her lucky … [Read More]

Magnolia: a novel

From the publisher’s website: Here is an extraordinary love story that speaks to the crisis of separation and scorn, love and hate, following the Korean War ceasefire in July 1953. Four years later, Sukey, a graduate with much promise, falls in love with Kwon, a man who confesses to having been a North Korean spy. Although … [Read More]

Seven Contemporary Plays from the Korean Diaspora in the Americas

From the publisher’s website: Showcasing the dynamism of contemporary Korean diasporic theater, this anthology features seven plays by second-generation Korean diasporic writers from the United States, Canada, and Chile. By bringing the plays together in this collection, Esther Kim Lee highlights the themes and styles that have enlivened Korean diasporic theater in the Americas since … [Read More]

The Orphan Master’s Son

Publisher’s description: Citizens of our beloved Democratic Republic of North Korea! Imagine the life of an orphan boy from nowhere who is plucked from his orphanage by the military, to be trained as a tunnel assassin, a kidnapper, a spy. He has no father but the State, no sweetheart but Sun Moon, the greatest opera … [Read More]