Skipping the long list and the short list. I finally had my answer after reading Han Kang’s novel “The Vegetarian”: What if “the despised” can stand up on their own? First thought - I am glad I don't live in a country with such level of patriarchal b-shit going on. Disturbing. By this point, they decide that the best way to help is to physically force her into eating meat again, which absolutely made my blood boil. And it was hard reading about her harming herself like that, especially watching it through In-hye's eyes. I liked how Kang in pretty simple words and descriptions - and it's a really short novel - tacked on so many deeply rooted problems. Nope. “The thing is, she’s stopped eating meat.” In. Han Kang is a writer whose books are in conversation with each other. In this novel the more outwardly stable and successful a character is, the less likely they are to have any perspective on their life choices. I’ve been called a heretic. So... Let's eat! You should get a steak!" Reply. The vegetarian in here serves as a metaphor, a rallying cry, for a more accepting world. For those who have dealt with abuse, it's not as cut and dry to understand why mental illness affects them. I had no idea what I was getting into. 2015. Several seconds passed before he grasped that she was in earnest. Ultimately, though, how could we not go back to Kafka? Honestly? To be totally honest, this book is weird. The year is 2013. Another good article, courtesy of Chinook's review is this one. I don't know whether this was an intentional decision, but for me as a reader it meant that every 60 pages or so I was forced to feel like I was adjusting to a new writing style. . I had to sit and reflect on several of the passages for a few minutes—not because they were ill-written, but because they were both profound and often just outside of my immediate mental grasp, and that was a wonderful thing. Close reading is deep analysis of how a literary text works; it is both a reading process and something you include in a literary analysis paper, though in a refined form. In her mind. 5 stars. It starts off energetic, fast-paced, and almost manic. or, maybe not . I like my breasts; nothing can be killed by them. Had I paid for this one instead of getting a review copy from Crown Publishing in exchange for the review you are currently reading, I probably would've been pissed. Outside intervention, from family and friends and doctors, works to moderate the reality of this story, but their efforts are in the end as anemic as Anne Rice’s rescue of “the despised.” After all, who is the victim here? Stunning. Unlike The Vegetarian and Human Acts which wear the clothing of a novel, The White Book is naked. i will need to reflect on this book for 3-5 months before i say a single word about it. When the phone rang again she pulled out the cord. She seemed to be somewhat happy. I’ve lived it. In summation: Allegorical or not, this book failed on certain levels for me. What “the Vegetarian” needed in here was someone to understand her individuality and to respect it. Popularized in the mid-twentieth century, this way of reading allows you to interpret a text without outside information such as historical context, author biography, philosophy, or political ideology. The experience I have there made me feel deeply about this novel. (A second film, based on another novella, was released in 2011.) You have to suspend your past experiences with reading (outside of this genre) in order to enjoy this one. Triggers: This book is probably unusable for those in the depths of eating disorders, body dysmorphia, or suicidal ideation. . “She had merely absorbed all her suffering inside her.” It's not a bad thing though because there is a LOT packed into this little story. It’s not really about vegetarianism. But it concludes: Intrigued, moved, and pleasantly bemused. Her brother-in-law, a video artist, sexually exploits her. And has this, uh, unprecedented year gotten completely in the way of... Before the nightmare, Yeong-hye and her husband lived an ordinary life. yeah . I'll make a small commission! You’re telling me not to eat meat?” THE VEGETARIAN owes everything to Kafka and the idea of metamorphosis in life and in death. Over 10 million scientific documents at your fingertips. It’s a brutal reminder of the narrowmindedness that infects this planet towards those that fall through the cracks of society. Exceptional. This book is both sad, sensual and yes, a little crazy. It was also picked as one of the 10 Best Books of 2016 by the NYTimes Book Review. Too bad, too, because it was going so well. Whether or not this is a vegetarian, homosexual, transgender, a Buddhist Monk or a Christian isn’t overly important. Haven’t you done your makeup?” Update: Han Kang's book, "The Vegetarian", is the Man Booker international winner Han refrains from showing us the pandemonium of an uprising; instead she focuses on its effects. It's not a completely shit book. He should have been taking to the gallows, but I digress. In The White Book, Han lists the white things that form the nacreous structure of her nautilus shell. It is about sexism and discrimination, but it's also about disintegration of family, it's about society and invisible oppression by its norms, it's about mental I can't say I "liked" this book, a word "appreciated" is more accurate. “The monochrome world, entirely devoid of the colours he was now experiencing, had had a calmness that was beautiful in its way… All of his energy was taken up in trying to cope with the excitement, the heightened awareness of living in the present moment.”