Yeongdo, Korea 1911. In a small fishing village on the banks of the East Sea, a club-footed, cleft-lipped man marries a fifteen-year-old girl. The couple have one child, their beloved daughter Sunja. When Sunja falls pregnant by a married yakuza, the family face ruin. But then Isak, a Christian minister, offers her a chance of salvation: a new life in Japan as his wife. Following a man she barely knows to a hostile country in which she has no friends, no home, and whose language she cannot speak, Sunjas salvation is just the beginning of her story. Through eight decades and four generations, Pachinko is an epic tale of family, identity, love, death and survival. ...
|Format Type||:||Kindle Edition|
|Number of Pages||:||496 pages|
|Url Type||:||Home » Pachinko » Pachinko|
Min Jin Lee
MY RATING ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PUBLISHER Grand Central Publishing/Hachette Audio
PUBLISHED February 7, 2017
NARRATED Allison Hiroto
Absorbing and thought-provoking, PACHINKO will remain in your memory for years to come.
Pachinko is an addicting Japanese vertical arcade game, a cross between pinball and a slot machine. It’s a game of chance and the house odds are high. There are only a few winners, but lots of losers.
PACHINKO, the book, follows one Korean family though four generations b ...more
Told in chronological order, this book spans 4 generations and nearly a century of time and focuses on Zainichi or ethnic Koreans living in Japan. These Zainichi are essentially stateless citizens registered to Joseon or a unified Korea that hasn’t existed since the Korean War. Up until recently they had to apply for alien registration cards that required fingerprinting every three years and were rarely granted passports making overseas travel impossible. In Japan, ethnic Koreans are seen as sec ...more
One of the things I like about reading well written historical fiction is that it can take me to another time and place and can be a profound learning experience. I knew close to nothing about the Japanese occupation of Korea from 1910 through WWII. Last year I read Tiger Pelt which introduced me to this time in Korea which was horrific in so many ways for the Koreans. While this novel begins in a village in Korea, most of the story takes place in various places in Japan, but this is a Korean st ...more
I really enjoyed this saga of a Korean family from the 1930's to 1989. The story centers around Sunja, who is a teenager in Korea in the early 30's. Her father has died and she and her mother run a boarding house, earning money by taking in lodgers. Sunja is seduced by a mysterious businessman who lives in Japan and becomes pregnant by him. The businessman cannot marry Sunja and she makes a marriage of convenience to a Korean Christian minister who takes her to Japan, where she lives the remaind ...more
Pachinko is just the kind of book I love. It starts in Korea in the early 1900s with Hoonie, a young man with a cleft palate and a twisted foot. Despite his deformities he marries and his wife gives birth to a daughter, Sunja. When Sunja is a young teenager she makes some bad choices and ends up pregnant. The man who is to be the father is already married, and Sunja is ashamed of her mistake; but proud and determined she refuses to be his mistress. A single, kind pastor, sickly as a child and un ...more
Although some of the central events of the novel, like World War II and the atomic bomb drop at Nagasaki, are familiar territory for fiction, Lee prioritizes out-of-the-ordinary perspectives: her Korean characters are first the colonized, and then the outsiders trying to thrive in a foreign country despite segregation and persecution. I recommend Pachinko to readers of family sagas and anyone who wants to learn more about the Korean experience. My only caveat is that the book goes downhill in Pa ...more
Despite this being a 480 pg mini brick of a book, I absolutely flew through Pachinko on two commutes and a night. It's a sweeping, multi-generational epic of a Korean family, and we follow their collective and individual rises and falls, triumphs and failures, in 19010 - 1930 in Korea under Japanese occupation, and in Japan from 1930 - 1989 as expatriates and Zainichi Koreans. The characters are memorable, well-drawn, and their circumstances and hurdles extremely compelling, from family shame of ...more
!! NOW AVAILABLE !!
3.5 Stars rounded up
Pachinko is a sweeping family saga listed as being for readers of The Kite Runner and Cutting for Stone.
Following one Korean family through the years from Yeongdo, Busan, Korea where a poor fisherman and his wife give birth to a young infant boy. Hoonie, their only child of four to survive, was born with a cleft palate and a twisted foot, in addition to a pleasant temperament and broad shoulders.
The year Hoonie turns 27, 1910, Japan annexed Korea. His par ...more