Shin Kyung-Sook Book Reading at the Betts Auditorium

April 14, 2023

Book Reading
Shin Kyung-Sook
Betts Auditorium
Friday April 14, 4:30PM

Reading by one of South Korea’s most important and prolific authors, Shin Kyung-Sook, on the occasion of the English language translation publication of her most recent novel, I Went to See My Father.

Reading and discussion in Korean with live interpretation to English by Helen Hwayeon Kim.

Free and open to the public.

Kyung-Sook Shin is the author of numerous works of fiction and is one of South Korea’s most widely read and acclaimed novelists. She was the first woman to be awarded the Man Asian Literary Prize (for Please Look After Mom), and she has also been honored with the Manhae Literature Prize, the Dong-in Literature Prize, and the Yi Sang Literary Prize, as well as France’s Pirx de l’Inaperçu. Please Look After Mom is her first book to appear in English. It will be published in twenty-nine countries and has sold over 2 million copies in South Korea alone.

I Went to See My Father

A universal story about reconnecting with an aging parent, the novel follows Hon, who is tasked with taking care of her sick father after losing her own daughter in a tragic accident. Through many nights of trying to mitigate her father's sleep disorder and conversations with her siblings, Hon unravels secrets about her family history—including her father's time in the Korean War—and begins to realize her family members are much more complex than she'd previously given them credit for. Published by Astra House.

Praise for I Went To See My Father

"A book that makes you hurt all over, and yet smile at the same time. A book where the experience being shared is so immediately palpable, so universal yet Korean, and beautiful and powerful at the same time."

Kim Hyesoon, award-winning author of Autobiography of Death

"Kyung-Sook Shin is the writer who made me into a writer... I Went to See My Father features the author's hallmark emotional richness combined with a precision of language that pierces the soul... Shin guides us on a journey of heartache to literary catharsis."

Sang Young Park, author of Love in the Big City

"An insightful contemplation of memory and connectedness between family members. Shin threads together a lyrical family drama and the multilayered spectrum of Korean history in a compelling epic. It is not only a story of love and pain between father and daughter, but of how memories can heal tragic wounds and restore damaged relationships. A powerful, elegant, page-turner."

J.M. Lee, author of Broken Summer

"This is a book which reminds us that we all suffer from the same wounds, that no individual is free from the pains of their geography and that the greatest losses can only be healed where they all begin. Shin, once again, brings the unique history of a distant land into our homes and masterfully catches our hearts from the core, from the familiar bond of a child and a father."

Defne Suman, author of The Silence of Scheherazade and At The Breakfast Table

Sponsored by: Department of East Asian Studies, East Asian Studies Program, Comparative Literature, Program in Translation and Intercultural Communication, Creative Writing Program