pachinko by min jin lee

i was peeved at the publisher’s decision to put a major spoiler on the back-of-the-cover blurb, so no spoilers in this opinion.

pachinko is a family saga of three generations – classic approach. what makes it different is the setting, so unusual for anglophone readers – korea and japan. mostly japan. i think this is the first fiction book where i get to see this country through the eyes of a non-japanese person. and let me tell you, it’s not a flattering view, which has been a surprise in itself.

i absolutely recommend this book if you are:

  • not scared by books longer than 350 pages (don’t worry, this is a page-turner)
  • want to learn about moving from Korea to Japan in 30’s of of previous century
  • want to get curious about that historic period (i totally went on a wikipedia rabbit hole afterwards)
  • and just want read astonishingly well-written book.

five out of five from me.