Last week, I made my way through the National Book Award Finalist book Pachinko by Min Jin Lee.

This book gave me a lot to think about and a lot to Google as I read.

Pachinko follows four generations of a Korean family. It shows their love, their poverty, their ambition, and their family dynamics. Some of the family employment centers around yakuza owned Pachinko parlors. I knew nothing about these and gladly jumped into the internet rabbit hole to learn about them.

This book was beautiful and heartbreaking, giving the reader insight into the plight of Koreans in Japan. The narrative style was not my favorite. Chapters were long and the big life moments like falling in love, birth, and death were glossed over in time jumps.

Maybe that makes sense. Maybe the author was making a point that the characters could not take the time to dwell on any emotion. I would have loved to dwell on so many of them. When I read, I usually am swept up in the character’s emotions. They become my own. They urge me to finish a book, so that I can resolve the emotions. With this book, it was not the point, leaving me with my own unresolved emotions. Again, perhaps that is the point.

Pick it up and see for yourself!

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