At the Fiction Writers Review

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2 April 2010

A thoughtful review up at Fiction Writers Review, by Celeste Ng.

Because of [the] collage-like structure, the novel offers the same pleasures—and challenges—of a photography exhibit. Reading, we leapfrog across space and time, from a kitchen in a small South Korean town to a village in Darfur to a gallery in Paris, and we must put together the pieces. What’s the significance of this moment? Why is this snapshot placed beside that one? How do these all fit together?…

Chung presents each scene with confidence and trusts us to make the necessary connections, to see what the characters are saying by allowing themselves to be seen. And in fact, one of the joys in reading this debut is connecting the pieces, then stepping back for the big view: the intricate and nuanced family story that emerges… a portrait of the way the Hans are both fractured and then relinked in unexpected ways. Its quietness belies the deep emotions within.

Read the complete review here.

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