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Upcoming books

Here are the upcoming Korea-related books that we’re particularly looking forward to – both fiction and non-fiction. There are probably loads more that we should be looking forward to, if only we knew about them. Sorted by anticipated publication date.

If you know about any titles you think we should be tracking, please let us know via the form at the bottom of this page. We can only log the titles we know about, so do tell!

BookPub dateCover image

The Candlelight Movement, Democracy, and Communication in Korea
Chuyun Oh, Hojeong Lee, Huikyong Pang, Hun Shik Kim, Jiwoon Yulee, JongHwa Lee, Jungwon Kim, Yong-Chan Kim, Youllee Kim

From the publisher’s website: This book examines key features, problems and implications of the 2016-2017 Candlelight Movement, a historical cornerstone for democracy and social movements in South Korea. The Candlelight Movement brought profound social changes with important lessons and questions for scholars, practitioners, activists, and the public. To examine the full complexity of the movement, […] (Amazon link)

Sep 2021

Sound of the Border: Music and Identity of Korean Minority Nationality in China
Sunhee Koo
University of Hawai'i Press

From the publisher’s website: Using ethnographic data collected in China and South Korea between 2004 and 2011, Sound of the Border provides a comprehensive view of the music of Koreans in China (Chaoxianzu), from its time as manifestation of a displaced culture to its return home after more than a century of amalgamation and change in China. […] (Amazon link)

Sep 2021

Future Yet to Come: Sociotechnical Imaginaries in Modern Korea
Robert Ji-Song Ku, Sonja Kim
University of Hawai'i Press

From the publisher’s website: South Korea is home to cutting-edge electronics, state-of-the-art medical facilities, and ubiquitous high-speed internet. The country’s meteoric rise from the ashes of the Korean War (1950–1953) to rank among the world’s most technologically advanced societies is often attributed to state-led promotion of science and technology in nation-building projects. With chapters that […] (Amazon link)

Sep 2021

Kwon Yeo-sun tr Janet Hong
Head of Zeus, Other Press

From the publisher’s website: ‘A haunting literary crime story … Razor-sharp observations of class, gender and privilege in contemporary Korea’ Cosmopolitan In the summer of 2002, nineteen-year-old Kim Hae-on was murdered in what became known as the High School Beauty Murder. There were two suspects: Shin Jeongjun, who had a rock-solid alibi, and Han Manu, to […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

The Constitution of South Korea: A Contextual Analysis
Chaihark Hahm

From the publisher’s website: The current South Korean Constitution of 1987 is the culmination of decades-long efforts by the South Korean people to achieve democratic self-government. It is the fruition of untold sacrifices made by dedicated citizens who tirelessly fought to rein in the power of the government under some form of constitutional rule. In […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

The Cabinet
Kim Un-su tr Sean Lin Hilbert
Angry Robot

From the publisher’s website: Winner of the Munhakdongne Novel Award, South Korea’s most prestigious literary prize. Cabinet 13 looks exactly like any normal filing cabinet…Except this cabinet is filled with files on the ‘symptomers’, humans whose strange abilities and bizarre experiences might just mark the emergence of a new species. But to Kong, the harried […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

Education in South Korea: Reflections on a Seventy-Year Journey
Won Ki Kim

From the publisher’s website: This book, the result of a landmark colloquium held in Korea to reflect on the role of education in Korean society, provides fascinating insights into the interplay of political evolution and pedagogy. Korea has gone from one of the world’s poorest societies after the Korean War to one of its richest, […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

Love in the Big City
Park Sang-young tr Anton Hur
Tilted Axis

A fresh and unique debut novel by the bestselling young star of Korean queer fiction. Love in the Big City is an energetic, joyful, and moving novel that depicts both the glittering nighttime world of Seoul and the bleary-eyed morning-after. Young is a cynical yet fun-loving Korean student who pinballs from home to class to the […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

Hegemonic Mimicry: Korean Popular Culture of the Twenty-First Century
Kyung Hyun Kim
Duke University Press

From the publisher’s website: In Hegemonic Mimicry, Kyung Hyun Kim considers the recent global success of Korean popular culture—the Korean wave of pop music, cinema, and television also known as hallyu—from a transnational and transcultural perspective. Using the concept of mimicry to think through hallyu’s adaptation of American sensibilities and genres, he shows how the commercialization […] (Amazon link)

Oct 2021

Carving Status at Kŭmgangsan: Elite Graffiti in Premodern Korea
Maya KH Stiller
University of Washington Press

From the publisher’s website: North Korea’s Kŭmgangsan is one of Asia’s most celebrated sacred mountain ranges, comparable in fame to Mount Tai in China and Mount Fuji in Japan. Carving Status at Kŭmgangsan marks a paradigm shift in the research about East Asian mountains by introducing an entirely new field: autographic rock graffiti. The book details how […] (Amazon link)

Nov 2021

Song of Arirang: The Story of a Korean Rebel Revolutionary in China
Kim San, Nym Wales tr Dongyoun Hwang

From the publisher’s website: Song of Arirang tells the true story of Korean revolutionary Kim San (Jang Jirak), who left colonized Korea as a teenager to fight against Japanese imperialism and fought alongside Mao’s Red Army during the Chinese Revolution. First published in 1941, this remarkably intimate memoir (as told to the American journalist Nym […] (Amazon link)

Nov 2021

Invented Traditions in North and South Korea
Andreas Schirmer, Andrew Miles Logie, Don Baker, Eunseon Kim, Jan Creutzenberg, Keith Howard, Laurel Kendall, Maria Osetrova, Robert Winstanley-Chesters
University of Hawai'i Press

From the publisher’s website: Almost forty years after the publication of Hobsbawm and Ranger’s The Invention of Tradition, the subject of invented traditions—cultural and historical practices that claim a continuity with a distant past but which are in fact of relatively recent origin—is still relevant, important, and highly contentious. Invented Traditions in North and South Korea examines the ways […] (Amazon link)

Nov 2021

The Societal Codification of Korean English
Alex Baratta

From the publisher’s website: From K-pop to kimchi, Korean culture is becoming increasingly popular on the world stage. This cultural internationalisation is also mirrored linguistically, in the emergence and development of Korean English. Often referred to as ‘Konglish’, this book describes how the two terms in fact refer to different things and explains how Koreans […] (Amazon link)

Dec 2021

Painter of the Wind
Lee Jung-myung tr Hannah Pang, Stella Kim
Harriet Press

From the publisher’s website: A heart-wrenching and gripping novel with over a million copies sold! Painter of the Wind is a masterful novel that was adapted into a popular, award winning South Korean TV series. This gem of a book also delights readers with a rare collection of thirty-four colour paintings, including Shin Yun-bok’s Portrait of a […]

Dec 2021

20 Years 20 Days: Reflections from Prison
Shin Young-bok
Meredith Victory

Exact publication date not known. Visit the publisher’s website for up-to-date info Reflections from Prison is a collection of  letters and essays from renowned Korean thinker Shin Young-Bok written during his 20 years as a political prisoner under the military government. ​The letters range from post cards to tiny characters squeezed onto his Army Prison daily […]

Dec 2021

Record of the Seasonal Customs of Korea: Tongguk sesigi by Toae Hong Sŏk-mo
Toae Hong Sŏk-mo tr Werner Sasse
University of Hawai'i Press

Record of the Seasonal Customs of Korea (Tongguk sesigi) is one of the most important primary sources for anyone interested in traditional Korean cultural and social practices. The manuscript was completed in 1849 by Toae Hong Sŏk-mo, a wealthy poet and scholar from an influential family. Toae, with his keen interest in the habits and customs […] (Amazon link)

Dec 2021

The God Susanoo and Korea in Japan’s Cultural Memory: Ancient Myths and Modern Empire
David Weiss

From the publisher’s website: This book discusses how ancient Japanese mythology was utilized during the colonial period to justify the annexation of Korea to Japan, with special focus on the god Susanoo. Described as an ambivalent figure and wanderer between the worlds, Susanoo served as a foil to set off the sun goddess, who played […] (Amazon link)

Jan 2022

Balancing Communities: Nation, State, and Protestant Christianity in Korea, 1884–1942
Paul S Cha
University of Hawai'i Press

From the publisher’s website: Starting in 1884 with the arrival of the first resident Protestant missionary in Korea and ending with the expulsion of missionaries from the peninsula by the Japanese colonial government in 1942, Balancing Communities examines how the competing demands of communal identities and memberships shaped the early history of Protestantism in Korea. In so […] (Amazon link)

Jan 2022

The Penguin Book of Korean Short Stories
Han Kang, Hwang Sok-yong, Kim Young-ha, Park Wan-suh, Yi Mun-yol, Yi Sang tr Bruce Fulton

From the publisher’s website: This eclectic, moving and wonderfully enjoyable collection is the essential introduction to Korean literature. Journeying through Korea’s dramatic twentieth century, 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 […] (Amazon link)

Feb 2022

Korea: A History
Eugene Y Park
Stanford University Press

From the publisher’s website: The first English-language history of Korea that offers a balanced, comprehensive overview reflecting recent East Asian and Western scholarship While popular trends, cuisine, and long-standing political tension have made Korea familiar in some ways to a vast English-speaking world, those who follow K-Pop or North Korea’s nuclear weapons program have little […] (Amazon link)

Feb 2022

The Old Woman with the Knife
Gu Byeong-mo tr Kim Chi-young
Hanover Square Press

From the publisher’s website: The kinetic story of a sixty-five-year-old female assassin who faces an unexpected threat in the twilight of her career—this is an international bestseller and the English language debut from an award-winning South Korean author  At sixty-five, Hornclaw is beginning to slow down. She lives modestly in a small apartment, with only her […] (Amazon link)

Mar 2022

Justifying Violence on Korea’s Cold War Frontlines: The Life and Representations of Kim Tu-han
Erik Mobrand

From the publisher’s website: The son of a nationalist martyr, Kim Tu-han (1918-1972) rose to prominence as a mobster in 1930s Seoul. As conditions shifted, he deployed his gang first as a construction corps supporting the Japanese war effort, then as a progressive force, and, most successfully, as an anti-communist vigilante group. After narrowly escaping […] (Amazon link)

Mar 2022

Gwangju Uprising: The Rebellion for Democracy in South Korea
Hwang Sok-yong, Jeon Yong-ho, Lee Jae-eui tr Slin Jung

The essential account of the South Korean 1980 pro-democracy rebellion On 18 May 1980, student activists gathered in the South Korean city of Gwangju to protest the martial law government of General Chun Doo-hwan. The security forces responded with unmitigated violence. Hundreds of students, activists and citizens were arrested, tortured and murdered. This fresh translation […] (Amazon link)

Mar 2022

Park Seo-Bo: Écriture
Lee Jin Joo, Rosa Maria Falvo

From the publisher’s website: This is the definitive monograph on the “godfather” of Korean contemporary art, master painter Park Seo-Bo, also the founder of Korea’s Dansaekhwa movement. Park Seo-Bo was born in 1931, in Yecheon, Gyeongbuk, South Korea, as part of a generation that was deeply affected by the Korean War (1950–1953). While in Paris […] (Amazon link)

Apr 2022

Shin Kyung-sook tr Anton Hur
Feminist Press, Weidenfeld + Nicolson

NYT-bestselling author of PLEASE LOOK AFTER MOM and winner of the International Man Booker Prize Kyung-Sook Shin’s VIOLETS – her first novel -, about a young woman who works in a flower shop and has been shunned by her female high school lover, which sets her apart from society and the world of Seoul. From […] (Amazon link)

Apr 2022

The Lazarus Heist: From Hollywood to High Finance: Inside North Korea’s Global Cyber War
Geoff White

Investigative journalist, author and broadcaster Geoff White is among the UK’s leading technology specialists, working for the BBC, Channel 4 News, The Sunday Times and many more. In a career spanning 20 years he has covered election hacking, the dark web, the personal data trade and the emergence of cybercrime as one of the primal […] (Amazon link)

Jun 2022

Table for One: Stories
Yun Ko-eun tr Lizzie Buehler
Columbia University Press

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 […] (Amazon link)

Sep 2022

The Korean Cinema Book
Julian Stringer, Nikki Lee

Publisher description: The volume provides the first detailed and authoritative overview of Korean cinema history, and in so doing develops new historical and critical understandings of Korean cinema from the period of Japanese colonial rule to the present day, with two very different cinematic traditions in this divided peninsula. The contributed chapters approach the subject […] (Amazon link)

Mar 2023

The Consultant
Im Seong-sun tr Brother Anthony of Taizé

From the feature in the Korea Times: “The Consultant” is not your average thriller. It revolves around a young aspiring novelist who, unbeknownst to himself, becomes part of a hit squad. Upon the requests of his clients, the protagonist conducts elaborate amounts of research and planning in order to make planned murders look natural, creating […]

Mar 2023

This list can only contain the books we know about. So if you’re aware of an upcoming book that we should be tracking, whether fiction or non-fiction, let us know about it. If it’s literature in translation, we’ll definitely add it. If it’s non-fiction, we’ll probably add it, but reserve the right to politely decline because hours in the day, and database space, are finite resources.