I just finished reading Please Look After Mom by Kyung-sook Shin. This is the English debut for the author, but she has sold many books already in Korea. I decided rather then doing the traditional reading of this book to try books on tape. Reality is I knew I would not be able to listen to the CD's at home, but as I work about 25 min away from my house this would allow me about an hour a day during the week to "read" the book on my commute.
This novel is about a rural Korean mother who goes to Seoul with her husband to visit their children and mysteriously disappears from the Seoul Station. Told from the point of view of a daughter, son, husband and mother. From these points of view you are able to see how anyone can make mistakes, even when it comes to someone you love. It also instills just how important a mother is to the family unit. Please Look After Mom, allows you to feel as though you are the characters or a fly on the wall, as they search for their wife and mother and hear stories of her been spotted in their old Seoul neighborhoods Through searching for her they are able to learn more about their mother/wife. Most of they either failed to pay attention to or were not aware of all the years she was physically in their life.
This novel really hits home as it allows you to view your own mother as more then just your mom. Many of us fail to see our mothers as a woman, wife or even a fragile human being. It also shows at the same time how selfless the job of a mother is and how very important it is, while at the same time how under appreciated it can be in the moment.
I found the books on tape as a great alternative way to read this book. Books on Tape I found was especially beneficial with this booking being based in Korea. I found that it brought more authenticity and realness to the story. Being able to hear these characters and hear about their Korea and their mother from their own words, made this fictional story seem real to me.
I would definitely recommend reading this book no matter what style you choose. You will definitely see the beauty in this authors work!
If you are looking for some other great reads why not check out my #50bookpledge reading list. Its also not too late to start your own!