London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

Table for One: Stories [forthcoming]

From the publisher’s website: An office worker who has no one to eat lunch with enrolls in a course that builds confidence about eating alone. A man with a pathological fear of bedbugs offers up his body to save his building from infestation. A time capsule in Seoul is dug up hundreds of years before … [Read More]

Everything Good Dies Here: Tales from the Linker Universe and Beyond [forthcoming]

Introducing English readers to the speculative fiction of pseudonymous author Djuna, whose writings and interventions into internet culture have attracted a cult following in South Korea The stories brought together in this collection introduce for the first time in English the dazzling speculative imaginings of Djuna, one of South Korea’s most provocative SF writers. Whether … [Read More]

Wafers [forthcoming]

This 2006 collection of short stories is in line with the unsettling, engrossing style of Ha’s other two collections that have been translated into English, the critical and commercial successes Flowers of Mold and Bluebeard’s First Wife. A best-seller in Korea, Ha Seong-nan is one of the stars of contemporary short fiction, writing edgy, socially conscious stories that … [Read More]

At Night he Lifts Weights

A disquieting vision of ecological dystopia in a collection by a major Korean writer. An artist is plagued by desire for her mysterious double as disease spreads through an uncanny suburban landscape. An elderly woman suspects the old man who lifts weights in her neighborhood playground of being responsible for a spate of murders. While … [Read More]

Knockoff Viagra & Jeje

“I had been called to pick up Jeje from a karaoke bar in Jongno district…” A deftly expressive short modern love story concerning the misadventures of Hyoung and Jeje as they navigate the Seoul underworld in search of something more from life with lots to say about our contemporary moment; how people use and are used by others, but … [Read More]

Take My Voice

“The bloodstains on the linoleum were impossible to remove completely.” A madcap, sci-fi, found-family caper set in a world where a small group of people, known as ‘monsters’,  have developed odd special powers or traits necessitating their voluntary, or less voluntary, incarceration while the state works out what to do with them and which builds to a wonderfully comic set-piece, charmingly … [Read More]

Towards 0%

“Despite the hordes of people packing the theatre that day, I can’t remember a single face.” An extended meditation on the world of Korean cinema, the blockbuster versus the independent artist, its trends and its characters and role in society, seen through the eyes of a film enthusiast narrator and their interactions with those around them, each … [Read More]

Kyoko and Kyoji

“My name is きょうこ, Kyoko, I am Korean … I have something important to tell you.” A subtly disorienting story of reminiscences between a mother and daughter as they each in their own way struggle with the effects of the mother’s encroaching dementia. As they each try to piece together the fragments of a traumatic history, through doing so they tell … [Read More]

The Greatest Gamble On Earth

“If I had to choose the richest person whom I would call a friend, I would pick Han Seung-hui.” A reconnection with an old friend leads to an intriguing party invite with surprising results and, through this simple tale and the progress of a single relationship, but from separate and very different worlds, a deeper story is told of contemporary society and class. About the … [Read More]

Walk With A Goddess

“Are you referring to the ‘strange and sorrowful coincidences’? That’s what I call them. I don’t know what you’ve heard, but they’re no ordinary, everyday thing, just so we’re clear.” A young woman rumoured to be possed of a strange supernatural ability and a young man take a walk. As she tells him her story … [Read More]

Like A Barbie

“Met her again today. I finally got my hands on her, but still can’t believe what she put me through all that time. Attaching her face here. K-Bot.jpg” A story of a young student’s tribulations and those of the people around her which says a lot about the process of coming of age in contemporary Korean society … [Read More]

For That Which Cannot Be Restored

“I simply shrugged at her like a westerner, which did nothing to temper the bottled-up shame and simmering anger within me.” A cranky woman of letters ends up investigating after a story submitted for a writing competition at a government sponsored magazine is pulled from publication by its author, and in doing so finds a … [Read More]

The Penguin Book of Korean Short Stories

This eclectic, moving and richly enjoyable collection is the essential introduction to Korean literature. Journeying through Korea’s dramatic recent past, from the Japanese occupation and colonial era to the devastating war between north and south and the rapid, disorienting urbanization of later decades, The Penguin Book of Korean Short Stories captures a hundred years of vivid storytelling. … [Read More]

The Age of Doubt

The Age of Doubt collects some of Pak Kyongni’s most famous works, including her 1955 debut and other stories featuring characters that would appear in her 21-volume epic, Toji. Many of Pak’s stories reflect her own turbulent experiences during the period following the Korean war and the various South Korean dictatorships throughout the twentieth century. … [Read More]

The Partition

Twenty-one years after the publication of his landmark debut collection Yellow, Don Lee returns to the short story form for his sixth book, The Partition. The Partition is an updated exploration of Asian American identity, this time with characters who are presumptive model minorities in the arts, academia, and media. Spanning decades, these nine novelistic stories traverse an … [Read More]


WINNER OF THE PEN/ROBERT W. BINGHAM PRIZE • LONGLISTED FOR THE STORY PRIZE • The breathtaking debut of an important new voice—centered on a constellation of Korean American families “To encounter these achingly truthful, beautiful stories of newcomer Americans is like gazing up at the starry vault of a perfect night sky; it’s immediately dazzling and impressive, and yet the … [Read More]