May 2017 Wrap-Up

May saw me leaving the Man Booker International Prize behind (if only temporarily…), allowing me to devote the month to other areas.  In fact, while I did read a few other books, all of May’s reviews look at works from South Korea or Japan, with several ideas for anyone interested in the two countries’ literature.  But what was my pick of these eastern selections?  Well, you’ll just have to be patient – as always, the numbers come first…

Total Books Read: 8
Year-to-Date: 51

New: 7
Rereads: 1

From the Shelves: 2
Review Copies: 6
From the Library: 0
On the Kindle: 1 (1 review copy)

Novels: 5
Novellas: 1
Short Stories: 2
Non-Fiction: 0

Non-English Language: 8 (5 Korean, 3 Japanese)
In Original Language: 0

Books Reviewed in May were:
1) The Impossible Fairytale by Han Yujoo
2) Time Differences by Yoko Tawada
3) Friendship for Grown-Ups by Nao-Cola Yamazaki
4) Inheritance from Mother by Minae Mizumura
5) Familiar Things by Hwang Sok-yong
6) Meeting with my Brother by Yi Mun-yol
7) The Pinch Runner Memorandum by Kenzburō Ōe
8) Dishonored by Choi Min-woo
9) Hot Air Balloon by Son Bo-mi
10) Gold Rush by Yu Miri

Tony’s Turkey for May is: Nothing

A wonderful month of East-Asian reading – no turkeys here.

Tony’s Recommendation for May is:
Yu Miri’s Gold Rush

There were several contenders this month, and I was tempted to single out Hwang Sok-yong’s story of a boy on the fringes of society as my favourite.  However, despite a couple of minor flaws, Gold Rush is a wonderful work, and in my month of Japanese-Korean literature, perhaps it’s only apt that the recommendation connects the two countries.

June sees the announcement of the Booker winner (and, more importantly, our Shadow winner, too!), so I’ve already started a little rereading in order to be prepared for the big day.  However, with a few more review copies trickling in, there are plenty of other books to be read, and not all of them are from Korea and Japan.  Stay tuned to find out what’s up next on the list 🙂


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