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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Korean Word for Butterfly Review

Korean Word for Butterfly

Written by: James Zerndt
# of pages: 328

Average Rating: 3.63/5
My Rating: 2/5

Read in February 2013

Summary according to goodreads

Set against the backdrop of the 2002 World Cup and rising anti-American sentiment due to a deadly accident involving two young Korean girls and a U.S. tank, The Korean Word For Butterfly is told from three alternating points-of-view:

Billie, the young wanna-be poet looking for adventure with her boyfriend who soon finds herself questioning her decision to travel so far from the comforts of American life;

Moon, the ex K-pop band manager who now works at the English school struggling to maintain his sobriety in hopes of getting his family back;

And Yun-ji , a secretary at the school whose new feelings of resentment toward Americans may lead her to do something she never would have imagined possible. 

The Korean Word For Butterfly is a story about the choices we make and why we make them. 

It is a story, ultimately, about the power of love and redemption.

My Thoughts

I received a copy of this novel to review, but that does not influence my opinion on the book. 

Although this book is only slightly over 300 pages, it took me a long time to get through and I had even put it down at one point. It is very rare for me to want to give up on a book but that desire was strong while reading this. I could not relate to the characters, and that bothered me more than the actual storyline.

One of the characters, Billie, I had hoped I would relate to because she is young and artistic but I found her almost hard to read. The parts written in the perspective of Billie could almost be read like diary entries - that's how I read her. I didn't like the tone or writing style used on this character at all, as I thought it didn't show much personality. 

I had high hopes going into this book since it was something different than I am used to, but I could't seem to connect with any of the characters, and the writing didn't flow the way I prefer to read. I wish I could have enjoyed it more, but it was to slow, couldn't grasp my attention, and I couldn't get sucked into the story. 

It is nothing against the author, and the story had great potential, I just feel that is was executed poorly. I hope to reread this when I am later into my adult years to see if time will change my views on this novel.

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