Pachinko (National Book Award Finalist) - Min Jin Lee

Pachinko (National Book Award Finalist)

By Min Jin Lee

  • Release Date: 2017-02-07
  • Genre: Fiction & Literature
Score: 4.5
4.5
From 936 Ratings

Description

A New York Times Top Ten Book of the Year and National Book Award finalist, Pachinko is an "extraordinary epic" of four generations of a poor Korean immigrant family as they fight to control their destiny in 20th-century Japan (San Francisco Chronicle).

NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF 2017 * A USA TODAY TOP TEN OF 2017 * JULY PICK FOR THE PBS NEWSHOUR-NEW YORK TIMES BOOK CLUB NOW READ THIS * FINALIST FOR THE 2018 DAYTON LITERARY PEACE PRIZE* WINNER OF THE MEDICI BOOK CLUB PRIZE

Roxane Gay's Favorite Book of 2017, Washington Post

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * #1 BOSTON GLOBE BESTSELLER * USA TODAY BESTSELLER * WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLER * WASHINGTON POST BESTSELLER


"There could only be a few winners, and a lot of losers. And yet we played on, because we had hope that we might be the lucky ones."

In the early 1900s, teenaged Sunja, the adored daughter of a crippled fisherman, falls for a wealthy stranger at the seashore near her home in Korea. He promises her the world, but when she discovers she is pregnant--and that her lover is married--she refuses to be bought. Instead, she accepts an offer of marriage from a gentle, sickly minister passing through on his way to Japan. But her decision to abandon her home, and to reject her son's powerful father, sets off a dramatic saga that will echo down through the generations.

Richly told and profoundly moving, Pachinko is a story of love, sacrifice, ambition, and loyalty. From bustling street markets to the halls of Japan's finest universities to the pachinko parlors of the criminal underworld, Lee's complex and passionate characters--strong, stubborn women, devoted sisters and sons, fathers shaken by moral crisis--survive and thrive against the indifferent arc of history.

*Includes reading group guide*

Reviews

  • Exceptional

    5
    By DeoRS
    From the moment I started reading it up until the very end, I was marveled by this story. I’ve cried and laughed along with it. I simply could not put this book down. Beautiful!
  • Best book I’ve ever read.

    5
    By LunaUki
    Amazing plot and characters. Intriguing story. I read a lot of books and this is now my favorite. Will definitely read again and will read more from this author. This book made me sad. I can honestly say that I love this book. Would recommend to everyone. Read it, you won’t regret it.
  • A moving masterpiece

    5
    By Aithy Nguyen
    I genuinely did not think I would love this book so much. Initially I read this book because I was intrigued by the Korean and Japanese aspects of the book and wanted to get a good story out of it. We follow four generations of a Korean family and their struggles, losses, experiences, and family connections through the entire novel. I loved every minute of this book and love the characters even more. Min Jin Lee really gave us a heartfelt story about family and identity and endurance. Everything I read was so well thought out and I sympathized with everything that was thrown at me. The circumstances of the characters and their responses to them were really what shaped the story. Sacrifice and love play huge roles in the book, and that is ultimately what makes it so special.
  • Pachinko

    5
    By Brunetta4u
    Breathtaking Heartbreaking Eye opening
  • Introspective

    5
    By Unusual reviewer
    Multi-generational tapestry of Korean immigrants in Japan that spoke directly at my heart as an immigrant myself. The struggles and triumphs of uncharted life are beautifully illustrated in times of war and hope. This novel is a living history book about family, love and despair that will keep you hooked from beginning to the end. Based on author’s extensive research and creativity, the novel comes to life with relatable characters and familiar surroundings that makes you wonder how the life is for these immigrants in the land of privacy and order called Japan.
  • More than I could have ever expected

    5
    By Carly_Latham
    What an accomplishment. I am more educated about Korea and Japan than I ever was in school after reading this novel, but it didn’t feel like a history lesson. It felt raw and real and you see the fishing village, feel the starched shirts Sunja wore and my face even felt the flame of shame that is so ingrained in their cultures. I read some reviews that didn’t like the swift change of point of view, but that is what makes this book so amazing. Enjoy the story! I understand WWII and even issues I didn’t were issues in the 80s and 90s more than ever before through characters that expanded my perspective on history. Beautifully written!
  • Excellent story

    4
    By Auggie's Man
    I enjoyed reading almost every minute of this story. Being in Japan while reading it somehow made the plot more meaningful. There were a few times that I was annoyed by the prose, and while that’s probably true of all books, for some reason (maybe grumpy old age) I took one star off for that. Even so, I highly recommend it!
  • The people effected by the pre WWII Asia

    3
    By nurse cathi
    I had read about the “dislike”the Koreans &Japanese had for each other over the centuries. In history books but history books unless specific to a country or timeline tend not to bring daily life into the chapter. I have Korean &Japanese friends who were born after WWII thought friendly you could feel some unidentifiable tension that I could not identify.After reading this book I got. feeling for what it may have meant to be a minority in a country that has spent years of fighting each other.
  • Long

    3
    By Lady Sparhawk
    This long and depressing novel has some cultural fascinations, but its world view is so antithetical to mine that I thought it would velvet end.
  • Pachinko

    5
    By Judy1954
    I love reading about foreign countries and this book was awesome. You follow a family and then their offsprings from Korea to Japan. What a wonderful story.

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