Why this book?
This novel was published a year after my college graduation, and even now, almost thirty years later, I can recall seeing the book at the neighborhood Waldenbooks. By this point I’d dreamed of becoming a writer myself, but who was I, a Korean-American kid, kidding? The only Asian-themed book I knew was The Good Earth, and it was written by Pearl S. Buck, who I assure you was not remotely Korean. So to have Native Speaker in print meant the world to me, and wouldn’t you know it, it’s also just a really engrossing book. With the self-doubting protagonist Henry Kim at its center, I adored how very Korean this book was. I still do.